It's been three years since we spoke with Mueller. At that time he recalled how he and his team had not only weathered the massive Hurricane Katrina--which affected many of his Gulf Coast Domino's stores--but how he had reopened stores within days to take care of his team members and the people in the communities they served.
Beyond his compassion and relentless drive, it's difficult to write about Mueller without acknowledging his unending pursuit of innovation. For example, those insulated bags that keep your pizza steaming hot while it makes its way to your house? Courtesy of Mueller and his team. And those illuminated portable car-top signs? You guessed it. And we haven't even mentioned his role in developing Domino's own drive-thru and carry-out-only store concepts.
"This is a 'fast-food' business," he says. "You've got to stay ahead, to innovate, to improve, and continually invest in the brand." These are all things he's passionate about--and all things Domino's CEO Patrick Doyle is passionate about too, he adds. They make a great team. "Competitors never sleep," says Mueller, "and we have to continue to adapt, improve, and meet customer demand."
Mueller's RPM Pizza organization remains a family business. He and his brother Richard Jr. founded the operation in 1981. Today ownership consists of three others: Richard Jr.'s son Richard III, COO (20 years in the business); Glenn's son Glenn Jr., marketing vice president (3 years in the business); and Linda Mueller (Richard Jr.'s wife, who also is an owner and outside investor). Glenn Jr. has taken over marketing as Richard Jr. retired in 2012 year after 45 years in Domino's. Also, Glenn's daughter Stephanie works in accounting (6 years in the business).
As you might expect, Mueller has been busy innovating in the two years since we last spoke. He says his organization is using more technology to maximize dollars and efficiencies and to increase driver security. "There is GPS and mapping technology now that allows us to provide a much safer operating environment for our drivers," he says.
Mueller also has been one of the first Domino's franchisees to launch the new "pizza theater store" concept at his Gulfport, Miss., location. He says it's a friendly, inviting atmosphere where customers can see their pizzas being made with fresh ingredients through a large glass window. "We also have the new wordless Domino's logo on our pole sign--the first one in the world," he says. "We have been a test basis for some of the new products, including artisan pizza, and have helped with the new store design."
For Mueller, innovation--and growth--are all in a day's work.
Name: Glenn Mueller
Title: Chief Excellence Officer
Company: RPM Pizza, LLC
No. of units by brand: 135
Family: Married 35 years, 5 children
Years in franchising: 31
Years in current position: 31 in the Domino's business; going on 10 as majority owner.
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