Special Events (choose 1 of 8)
Every activity within the RLC agenda is an opportunity to expand your professional network. Whichever you choose, you'll be surrounded by the restaurant industry's best and brightest. Don't miss this opportunity to meet new friends, chat with old ones and, most importantly, have fun.
Pre event registration for special events is required.
You are also required to check in for each special event at the special event desk the morning of your selected activity to secure your spot.
If you do not check-in at least 10 minutes prior to bus departure time, you forfeit your place to an attendee on the wait list.
Enjoy a morning of golf on the picturesque fairways of the Wildfire Golf Club. This is the perfect opportunity to continue building business relationships while practicing your swing. After the tournament, enjoy lunch with your fellow golfers.
6:45am - 7:45am Check-in, breakfast, and warmup
8:00am: Tournament begins (Shotgun Start)
Following Tournament - Lunch
6:00pm: Results and awards will be available at the RLC Registration Desk
Two different hikes will be offered by our professional guides: one for the more fitness-oriented hiker seeking a unique outdoor workout and one for the more leisurely hiker looking for an up close and personal tour of the desert's beauty.
7:30am - 8:00am - Check-in and breakfast (confirmed participants must check in by 7:45am)
8:00am - Bus departure from the Sunset Terrace
8:30am - 10:30am - Hiking
11:00am - Arrive at JW Marriott Desert Ridge
Climb on board in an open-air Jeep and experience the beauty and serenity of Arizona's Sonoran Desert on this guided tour. Learn about the spectacular trails from a genuine cowboy guide.
7:30am-7:45am: Check-in and breakfast (confirmed participants must check in by 7:45am)
8:00am: Bus departure from the Sunset Terrace
8:30am - 10:30am: Jeep Tour
11:00am: Arrive at JW Marriott Desert Ridge
Test your racing skills at Octane Raceway and zoom in your very own go-kart at up to 45 miles per hour. Will you have the fastest time on the track? Enjoy some friendly competition and get to know your fellow racers.
7:30am - 8:00am: Check-in and breakfast (confirmed participants must check in by 7:45am)
8:00am: Bus departure from the Sunset Terrace
8:30am - 10:30am: Octane Raceway Experience
11:00am: Arrive at JW Marriott Desert Ridge
How is your competitive energy? Test it out with pickleball, one of America’s fastest growing sports. Participate in a tournament on the new pickleball courts at the JW Marriott. Winners will take home a cash prize!
8:00am - Check-in at tennis courts
8:15am - Instruction and tournament
11:00am -Tournament completes
Location: Pickleball Courts at the JW Marriott
Discover the rich musical diversity and history of many of the world’s cultures at the Musical Instrument Museum. Featuring over 8,000 instruments from over 200 countries, this is the largest museum of its type in the world.
8:15am - 8:45am - Check-in and breakfast (confirmed participants must check in by 8:35am)
8:50am - Bus departure from the Sunset Terrace
9:00am - 11:00am - Musical Instrument Museum Experience
11:15am - Arrive at JW Marriott Desert Ridge
Test your sharpshooting ability at the Scottsdale Gun Club, the largest public indoor shooting range in the United States with state-of-the-art features, including user-friendly touchscreen control panels and a 360-degree rotating target system.
9:00am - 9:35am - Check-in and breakfast (confirmed participants must check in by 9:25 am)
9:40am - Bus departure from the Sunset Terrace
10:00am - 11:30am - Range Time
11:30am - 12:00pm - Awards presentation
12:20pm - Arrive at JW Marriott Desert Ridge
Create a take-home gift with the guidance of an experience paint instructor. This DIY crafting activity is a fun and unique way to connect with other attendees while tapping into your creative side.
9:15am - 9:45am: Check-in and breakfast (confirmed participants must check in by 9:35am)
9:50am - Bus departure from the Sunset Terrace
10:00am - 12:00pm: Painting Workshop
12:00pm - Bus departure
12:15pm - Arrive at JW Marriott Desert Ridge
SPECIAL SESSION - PRE REGISTRATION REQUIRED: RLD @ RLCLocation: Wildflower Ballroom C
Based on Leading NOW’s global research on leadership, The Missing 33%™, and the barriers to advancement for underrepresented talent, this program focuses on preparing them to be confidently placed into succession plans for leadership roles.
Unique to the industry, this program layers business, strategic and financial acumen on top of skills for personal greatness and engaging others to drive a deep understanding of the restaurant business. Held during the Restaurant Leadership Conference, this opportunity will also support the development of strategic relationships and exposure for your future leaders to leadership of the industry.
Please use this link to register and find out more information.
SPECIAL SESSION - U.S. Restaurants Now & NextLocation: Grand Sonoran F
This session will examine key trends, growth and outlook for the restaurant industry, touching upon critical issues facing restaurants as the industry continues to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Opening General SessionLocation: Grand Saguaro Ballroom
Inspire Brands CEO Paul Brown is one of the most relevant executives in the industry today. The former winner of the Restaurant Business Restaurant Leader of the Year award provides his insight into the challenges facing the industry in 2022, as well as its opportunities. He sits down for a wide-ranging interview with RB Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Maze about technology, labor challenges and why size matters in the restaurant industry.
Join Restaurant Leadership for a rare - and guaranteed memorable - appearance by David Chang, the chef and founder of Momofuku. Called one of “the most influential people of the 21st Century” by Esquire and one of Fast Company’s “10 Most Creative People in Food of the 21st century,” David has been honored by Food & Wine Magazine and Bon Appetit, named a TIME 100, one of GQ 's “Men of the Year,” and Fortune’s “40 Under 40.” He has taken home four James Beard Foundation Awards and Momofuku Ko has two Michelin stars; his cookbook, Momofuku, is a New York Times bestseller. He was the first chef to be featured on the Emmy-award winning PBS television show, “The Mind of a Chef,” and along with Academy Award Winning Director Morgan Neville, David is a creative force behind “Ugly Delicious,” an eight-part Netflix original documentary series about foods we love and the stories that shape them. Don’t miss this conversation with one of food’s most fascinating personalities!
Innovation Forums (choose 1 of 11)
Led by the brightest professionals in foodservice, RLC's innovation forums are packed with hot topics and powerful messages designed to spark new ideas. Connect with the industry's game changers and gain valuable takeaways from the latest and greatest in foodservice innovation. There's something for everyone!
During this session, learn to unlock the sales and guest visit generating power of the multiple new data sources now available to restaurant marketers and operators. By focusing on the customer first, ADM Marketing has consistently driven incremental sales for its clients over its 20 year history.
Consumers were already embracing digital solutions, but over the past 18+ months, we witnessed - and were forced to embrace - an unprecedented acceleration of technology. Pick-up, Delivery and even In Restaurant Technologies challenged restaurants to survive and consumers to find new ways to experience food service. So now, as the world re-emerges and foot traffic returns, restaurants should ask: "What do customers want, and how do we build customer experiences that meet their expectations in 2022 and beyond?"
For the fourth year in a row, Tillster commissioned a survey of 1,000 QSR and Fast-Casual consumers to understand the impact of technology on customer behavior. Tillster CMO Hope Neiman will share findings and actionable takeaways from this report, comparing the latest findings with where previous results showed consumers were already heading. You will leave this interactive session with key insights and a better understanding of customers' preferences in the post-pandemic world that will enable brands to craft customer experiences their guests will love and that generate more profits from their technology and loyalty investments.
In the current environment, where operators are fighting for talent, reacting to fast-changing market dynamics, and needing to lean into (or get sidelined by) the accelerating pace of innovation, one operational lever has become both a major constraint on the business and the path to growth: team execution. Specifically, ops leaders are investing in initiatives that will give them an edge in both making store, field and HQ employees more efficient and that will raise the bar on the quality of execution across every one of their stores, even as they add more locations.
As one of the world’s largest quick service restaurant companies with operations spanning 100 countries, Restaurant Brands International Inc. understands the strategic importance and tangible impact of improving how work gets done across its 28,000 restaurants. John Zurovchak, Sr. Director Ops Training of RBI joins Zenput’s VP of Customer Success, Lydia Olu-Harding to share how RBI is prioritizing initiatives and technology investment decisions to scale operations by elevating team execution.
Staffing and talent shortages are impacting all segments of the restaurant industry in an unprecedented way. At the same time, restaurant operators are looking to invest in talent development solutions that will prepare their workforce for leadership roles in the future. Strategic Enterprise Education programs are the solution that address all of these challenges and more. In this session hosted by InStride with guests Dr. Howard Liebman of Smart Horizons Career Online High School and Courtney Brafford of the University of Memphis, attendees will learn how investments in employee education have helped companies like McDonald's, FedEx, and more to build education-based career opportunities for their employees. Come learn how organizations are able to solve talent challenges, create positive ROI, drive brand engagement and loyalty, and accomplish DEI goals.
Off-premise dining was an industry lifeline the past two years, but now it’s more than that: it’s a “sticky” habit that consumers enjoy because it makes their lives easier and more enjoyable. But with the rise of order ahead, curbside pickup, delivery, and drive thru, how can restaurants keep hospitality front and center?
In this panel, you’ll hear from industry experts who will speak on how digital is transforming the off-premise dining experience. Native apps, line busting, curbside pickup and new store designs are changing the way restaurants do business. Learn how Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers and Shake Shack are using digital tools and strategies to increase efficiency and throughput while giving customers what they want: convenience and excellent hospitality.
As the restaurant industry recovers amidst many challenges such as rising costs, labor shortage and elevated patron expectations, operators that are ready to adapt will thrive.
The foodservice industry has experienced a paradigm shift in the last 18 months. With persistent supply and labor shortages, and inflation at a 40-year high, operators face higher costs across every aspect of their business, including ingredients, consumables, third-party delivery, and labor. This market volatility and rising prices environment is expected to persist for the rest of the year and most operators are broadly exploring new ways to mitigate costs and empower productivity. While there has been a steady increase in productivity enhancing technology and automation solutions, the industry has reached an inflection point. Investments in these solutions are not only necessary but also critical for survival.
Furthermore, operators will have to shift mindset and operating models to accommodate smaller and changing workforce and the need to optimize both dine-in and off-premise experiences. A renewed focus on productivity is essential within the new foodservice landscape, as many operators look toward technology and automation to complement their downsized workforce.
Join a panel of reputed Foodservice industry experts and C-suite Operators who will share their real life experiences and practical advice. Learn how investments in solutions that enhance operational efficiency can help elevate your patrons experience, improve customer service, increase staff productivity, and raise the bar on hygiene and food safety.
The restaurant industry, like many others, has faced its set of challenges. Closures, capacity limits and labor shortages all contribute to today’s market uncertainty. But has widespread vaccine availability and general pandemic fatigue created a new—and complicated—relationship with restaurants?
Restaurant marketers have been agile, innovative, and resilient through many new challenges. And now more than ever, it’s important to deliver personalized messages that connect with guests on a 1:1 level.
Join Travis Freeman of Inspire Brands and Heather Hicks of Epsilon in this interactive fireside chat as they review new research from Epsilon on consumer sentiment towards restaurant ordering and eating, and how marketers can adjust their strategy accordingly to ensure success.
During this session, we’ll innovate together and discuss:
- Hot off the press research and trends reflecting insights on guest sentiment as it relates to third-party delivery versus native restaurant ordering
- The restaurant marketer’s strategies that are nimble and personalized
- The importance of understanding your guests as an individual
- Today’s pick-up and delivery preferences
Feeling the strain of “The Great Resignation” restaurants are turning to technology for help. Find out how top brands are empowering team members through automation technology, nimble labor management tools, and talent development solutions to help address some of the challenges they face. Join us for this dynamic panel featuring executives from several restaurant chains who have found creative ways to mitigate staffing shortages with technology.
Customers are more interested now than ever in treating themselves to innovative beverages while dining out, according to December 2021 research from The National Restaurant Association. Updating and/or adding to your beverage menu can increase guest check and drive revenue, but creating such intricate drinks for mass consumption could be quite the challenge given the labor shortage. This session will discuss how to quench the consumer’s thirst for new options and customization despite fewer workers.
Join Chris DeFrain, Vice President, Strategic Planning and Business Development of Lehigh Valley Restaurant Group (Red Robin Franchisee) and Hernan Mujica, Chief Information Officer of Texas Roadhouse to hear key technology learnings from the past two years and how technology is being implemented to bring guests back on-premise, support their restaurant teams and to streamline operations. Hosted by Raymond Howard, Chief Sales Officer of Ziosk.
You decide, 5 restaurant trends that will define the future of food service.
The restaurant industry is on the road to recovery from Covid 19 but now it must face the longer-term effects from the pandemic such as a higher business costs, a shallow labor pool, and supply chain/procurement disruptions. There are several predictions for the future of food service but, what does the restaurant leadership see as the most influential key trends that will define the industry in the categories of: Marketing, Workforce/labor, Products/Service, Supply Chain, Technology and Sales/Economic?
In this interactive session a panel of food service and hospitality leaders in restaurant operations, distribution and culinary will discuss some of the evidence-based trends, innovation and influences predicted to impact the restaurant and hospitality industry. The panelists along with help from the attending audience will vote on what they see is the most impactful trends in each category and the most game changing trend of all.
RLC MarketplaceLocation: RLC Marketplace (Grand Canyon Ballroom)
With almost 200 suppliers on display, you're sure to find all the industry-shapers within the RLC Marketplace. It's all about the connections you make and the hands you'll shake here, where suppliers and operators gather to uncover the latest solutions, sample new products and even close deals.