Sam Mustafa, CEO of Charleston Hospitality Group shares his advice for new CEOs on how to fight natural human impulse reactions to starting a new business such as giving up, accepting the first offer and ignoring the competition.
I have said it before and I will say it for as long as my experiences tell me otherwise; being an Entrepreneur is a job that requires inexhaustible grit, resilience and dedication. When you open up a company, that company and your employees soon become your everything. You’re now the leader and Chief Commander. It’s game time.
In the hospitality industry, your employees are your life-line to providing an exceptional service to all your guests in your establishment. You realize quickly how much pressure there is on yourself to fulfill all the promises you have made. The promises for yourself, your company, your employees and in my case, my guests. All these pressures can make you easily want to run away and push off responsibilities.
Being the founder of Charleston Hospitality Group for over 16 years, you could say that I have earned my stripes as a CEO. These stripes have also endured the ups and downs that come with the mass amount of success. I would be lying if I said there wasn’t a time that I thought about giving up. What I will add is that quitting was never an option for me.
A recent online article on Inc. that I resonated with earlier in my career as a CEO describes, “5 Common Urges Among Entrepreneurs That You Must Fight To Be Successful”. It is outlined below:
What are 5 Common Impulses Among New CEOs?
1) You Want To Run With Your Idea Immediately
Everything starts with a concept. Ideas are everything. However, ideas also need structure and a long-term plan or it will crash and burn as quickly as it becomes established.
Charleston Hospitality Group started with an idea. That idea was to provide all guests with a unique and memorable experience from sunup to sundown. Today, Charleston Hospitality Group portfolio has grown and diversified with 6 restaurant brands and over 15 locations. One of our concepts, Toast All Day recently rebranded its concept and franchised nationwide. Since I started my business in 2008, my company has continued to evolve and adjust to trends.
2) You Don’t Want To Accept That You Have Direct Competitors
Analyze your competition. By understanding your competitors, strengths and weaknesses you are able to utilize this into your business strategy, and reinforce your competitive advantage.
The reason Toast All Day has been so successful in Charleston, a town known for its bruncheries and infinite food choices, has much to do with our extensive market research.
3) You Raise Money As Soon As You Can
Growing your business and scaling quickly is very exciting. Trust me. I’ve been there. What I have learned is that there is something to be said about the phrase: “Slow and steady wins the race.” By having all operations in place, you are more attractive to prospect investors.
4) You Don’t Want To Tell Anyone Your Idea
Stop this immediately! You are only hurting yourself, your ego and those who want to help you scale your business. This was a mistake I had made early in my career. I didn’t want to share my idea with investors right away, I thought it would be harmful. Now as Toast All Day is franchised, I realize the exact opposite. When you share, you win.
5) You’re Tempted To Take The First Offer You Receive
Getting a million dollar deal right off the bat is pretty exciting and hard to say no to, but what if over time your business could be worth millions? Billions? Could be worth holding on to and scale your company as big as you can until you’re ready, and confident that it’s the right move.
Sam Mustafa is the the CEO of Charleston Hospitality Group and Toast! All Day Franchise. Named one of the nation’s 100 most influential CEOs by Nation’s Restaurant News and frequent speaker on Joe Pardavila’s Podcast on ForbesBooks Radio. He has also been featured on Medium, Authority Magazine, describing his version of the American Dream. Sam is one of the leading voices in the Restaurant Industry.
1) Fuld, Hillel. “5 Common URGES among Entrepreneurs That You Must Fight against to Be Successful.” Inc.com, Inc., 28 July 2021,