Author Archives: Big Dave Ostrander

2010 August: A Pizza My Mind

2010 August: A Pizza My Mind

Beauty lies in the bottom line. Simply put, beautiful menus are money-making menus. All the rest are money losers. What kind of menu do you have and how do you know? Let’s slice and dice a typical pizzeria menu. Profitability should be the deciding factor on all future decisions. This exercise will lean on theMore »

2010 July: A Pizza My Mind

2010 July: A Pizza My Mind

How many times have you asked yourself the question, “I wonder how the (you fill in the blank) national chains’ mega promotions are working out?” Sometimes, it seems like the big four national chains have an exclusivity on creativity. They constantly toss new ideas against the wall to see if they stick. Some do andMore »

2010 June: A Pizza My Mind

2010 June: A Pizza My Mind

Long before Cuba Gooding Jr. laid that line on Tom Cruise in the movie Jerry McGuire, I heard it from my wife every April 15th. My CPA heard the same such words from me. Did you ever ask yourself the question, “What am I doing this for? Did I buy myself a low paying job?More »

2010 June: Finding Success

2010 June: Finding Success

When I was a young pup 25 years ago, my landlord approached me. I had been renting my restaurant from him for five years or so. Ray was retired from the phone company and wanted to sell his local real estate properties and buy a retirement place in Florida. I was the de-facto landlord anyways.More »

2010 April: A Pizza My Mind

2010 April: A Pizza My Mind

I’m a volunteer firefighter. My department consists of 28 men and two women. We make around 150 runs a year. We’re on duty 24/7/365 through central dispatch via a belt pager. I’ve done this a long time, and my experience has taught me that there is no typical run. Each call varies between structure, aircraft,More »

2010 January: A Pizza My Mind

2010 January: A Pizza My Mind

I was blessed to train and develop many talented pizza delivery drivers over the years. What they found is that customers prefer to do repeat business with friendly people. They also found that they could earn tips three times their hourly wage by going the extra mile for our customers. In this day and age,More »

2010 February: A Pizza My Mind

2010 February: A Pizza My Mind

It was surreal. All that was missing from a scene from the Soprano’s were the candles and violins. I was being inducted into the management family of a growing pizza chain in Detroit. At 18 years old, I had earned my bones by running a very high volume delco while a senior in high school.More »

Ask Big Dave: Start-up worries

2013 January: Ask Big Dave

Q: I’m ready to do it, Dave. After attending International Pizza Expo and reading the magazine for a year now, I feel like I’m learning what it will take to succeed with my own pizza shop. I’m scared to death. Should I be? Phil Cross Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania A: Like many things in life, you justMore »

Ask Big Dave: Supplier Discounts

2012 December: Ask Big Dave

Q: Do you know of any independents grouping together to get discounts with suppliers? Darren Larson AllStar Pizza, Clute, Texas A: For the most part, suppliers are not keen on pricing with a loose group of independents. They are looking for groups that have been around for a while and have the authority to speak/representMore »