Decade of Disruption: Restaurant Insiders Dish What’s on the Plate

This article originally appeared in Modern Restaurant Management (MRM) magazine.

Modern Restaurant Management (MRM) magazine asked restaurant industry movers and shakers, including Compeat’s CMO, Kristi Turner: “What do you feel is going to cause disruption in the restaurant industry over the next decade?”

Their answers touched on a variety of subjects including AI, virtual reality, virtual kitchens, staffing and retention, social media marketing, sustainability and third-party delivery.

Below are just a few of the highlights. Wondering what this decade will bring for the restaurant industry? Click here to read the full article.

Kristi Turner, CMO of Compeat

Technology and business intelligence will be key to superior customer service over the next decade. Geofencing, for example, is a powerful tactic that allows operators to apply business intelligence in real-time. Through receiving this hyper-targeted information about our customers, we can connect with them like never before.

Imagine this: you’re close to your favorite lunch spot and you receive a message on your cell phone reminding you of an unused balance on a gift card. Then, they ask if they can get your usual order started – and it will be ready in five minutes.  No ordering. No standing in line. Many large QSR’s are already edging out the competition by leveraging real-time consumer data to build customer loyalty. These personalized and seamless customer service experiences are sure to win market share over those who are not using it.

Other expert predictions include:

  • “Guests will demand a personalized journey when food is delivered to their door.” – Elo’s Sonal Apte, vice president of retail and hospitality
  • “Restaurant groups that figure out how to find, compensate, motivate, and keep the very best people on staff will continue to disrupt the rest of their culinary competitors.” – Christopher Baron of RedBaron Consulting
  • “The most successful restaurateurs of the 21st century are going to be the people who harness the full potential of customer data.” – Heloise Blaure, founder of
  • “Decreasing labor costs and increasing efficiency is driving robotic development and implementation.” – David Bloom, Capriotti’s Chief Development and Operations Officer
  • “With self-service options, like kiosks, restaurants can improve efficiency, create new business opportunities and enhance the customer experience.” – Mark Bunney, Director of Go-To-Market Strategy at Ingenico Group
  • “Every restaurant is now a drive-thru at your front door. The eruption of ghost kitchens will further disrupt traditional restaurant space as we compete for market share.” – David Foxx, Chief Operations Officer for Ted’s
  • Pop up restaurants, food carts, ghost kitchens, and other non-traditional food service structures are the new launchpad for young chefs.” – Chef Ellie Golemb of Ghost Vegan
  • “Gone are the days when a family or friends go out to dinner and order individual entrees—sharing is now becoming the norm with the emergence of more tapas-style, dim sum, and gastro pub options.” – Ken Heymann, Chief Operating Officer, UniFocus
  • “I would also anticipate restaurant menus will become more and more data-driven with customization options not only allowing customers to personalize their meal but also gathering data on the most popular ingredient and menu items.” – Megan Palmer of ZeroCater
  • “Voice ordering, facial recognition and AI are all likely to play a role in continued restaurant disruption as merchants cater to consumers’ demands.” – Stacy Schulist, director of product marketing at Clover


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