With more than 2,400 locations, Chick-fil-A is a massive hit restaurant – which is one of the reasons Charlie Kleine, owner and operator of the new Whitestown location, was convinced that his establishment would be a success with local residents.
Kleine opened the new Chick-fil-A, located at 6240 East Whitestown Parkway, last September to an enthusiastic response from the local community.
“People have been very excited and happy that we opened,” Kleine says. “There was a lot of positive feedback from customers right away. This really has been a great location. People were happy that we came here. They love the food. They don’t have to drive as far to another location.”
Kleine undertook extensive research in order to find an optimal location, long before the doors of the new Chick-fil-A opened.
“This is a very mature market, and we knew we would be able to hold our own here in Whitestown,” Kleine says. “There is a lot of awareness of our name brand, which always helps when you open a restaurant. Chick-fil-A has such a solid reputation, and this area was identified as a strong place to open another franchise. I chose this location. There is a lot of room for growth, and we are looking to get further involved in the community.”
Kleine believes there are several reasons why Chick-fil-A is so successful, but he can narrow it down to three key factors.
“First, there is really a strong focus on excellent customer service,” he says. “We really go out of our way to make sure the customer is served fast. Second, we have excellent food. Third, the Chick-fil-A people are always asking how we can make our food and service better. You really can’t beat that strong commitment to the customer. We really want people to love their food and our strong customer service.”
Kleine adds that months – sometimes even years – of research goes into adding a single menu item.
“There was a lot of time and research that went into adding mac and cheese to the menu, which has turned out to be a huge success with customers,” Kleine says.
The biggest Chick-fil-A hit (including the Whitestown location) is still the Chick-fil-A chicken sandwich, a breaded, boneless chicken breast sandwich between two buttered buns. Chick-fil-A Founder S. Truett Cathy experimented with the sandwich for years at a restaurant called the Dwarf Grill In Hapeville, Georgia, and perfected the recipe in 1964. The sandwich has been a multi-million-dollar hit ever since.
“It’s still our customer favorite,” Kleine says. “The capital A in the title means grade-A, top quality. It gets ordered the most. It’s our number-one product, and what we are known for the most.”
Kleine’s personal favorite meal is a Chick-fil-A sandwich, with Chick-fil-A’s house sauce, waffle fries, mac and cheese, and a lemonade.
Kleine has enjoyed getting to know residents of the Whitestown and Zionsville communities.
“My wife Krystal and I have really been welcomed by the community here,” Kleine says. “We moved here last July from Ohio. We really love the way people here are so happy and friendly. We wanted to move to a place where we could work, shop and worship in a positive environment, and we have found it.”
Chick-fil-A is located at 6240 East Whitestown Parkway in Whitestown. For more info call 317-769-3551 or visit chick-fil-a.com.