Reimagining an experience for a quick-service giant


Chick-fil-A, a leader in the quick-service industry, was growing faster than it ever imagined. With double-digit sales growth year after year and new restaurants opening up all over the country, it was becoming increasingly important that the thousands of restaurant operators and headquarter employees were aligned around a vision for the future of the company.

One of the most important channels Chick-fil-A uses to communicate its business vision is its annual event that brings the entire organization together for four days. This event had been occurring for over 40 years, however, the approach and experience had become predictable and was losing relevance. Prophet was engaged to provide a “fresh set of eyes” to this event with the goal of rethinking how it could more effectively inspire Chick-fil-A Operators to take their businesses, and even their lives, to the next level.


Prophet took leaders at Chick-fil-A through a strategic process to reimagine and redefine this annual event, and to elevate its purpose and impact well beyond just a few short days. Prophet then helped design an entire experience with multiple formats that reflected how Operators wanted to engage with each other and the organization. The result was a newly branded and newly defined event called NEXT.

At NEXT, key leaders and external speakers were able to share inspirational perspectives and a vision for the future through bite-sized TED-style talks during “Common Ground” time. Breakout sessions became “Labs,” and the “Expert Corner,” and gave attendees the chance to work together to hone specific skills and engage with speakers in a more intimate format. The typical corporate expo became the “Garages,” which brought the most critical initiatives across the organization together into a highly experiential and hands-on format.


Prior to NEXT and Prophet’s involvement, there was a sense of frustration from Operators that the event, which was once meant for them, had lost its focus. However, following the first reimagined event, attendees and especially Operators felt re-engaged, empowered and inspired to be part of such an incredible organization. In fact, more than 80% shared they were likely to make a change in their business or their lives as a result of NEXT.

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