SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – As part of KTAL’s Honoring Black History Month special, we spoke Roy Griggs, CEO & Owner Operator of Griggs Enterprise, Inc, on his success and lessons for the next generation.
This fast-food enterprise can be found at nearly every exit and in every small town across America. McDonald’s is a billion-dollar brand and one Mississippi native who now calls Shreveport home owns 14 of them.
“I still have the passion today. I love what I do and I’m always asked when am I going to retire and I say I’m not done yet,” Griggs said.
Growing up in Meridian, Mississippi Griggs said he never dreamed he would this successful.
“My parents were very poor and there was not a lot of friends and family that owned businesses in the area I grew up in. So I had no idea growing up that I would own a business like this or own any business,” Griggs said.
At 18, he started his career at McDonald’s in Meridian as a crew member. The owners hired him on the spot during his interview after he made a great first impression at a previous job.
Little did he know this would be the beginning of something big.
“During my 10 years there I learned a lot about the business and the franchisee was a great coach for me,” Griggs said. “He saw something in me and he worked with me and encouraged me and then I said, ‘Okay if you think I could do it then I’m not afraid of a challenge.'”
In March of 1989, Griggs moved his wife and four kids to Thomasville, Alabama to open up his first store.
“I was nervous, excited, and scared, oh my God! So failure was not an option.”
In the fall of 1997, he relocated to Shreveport.
“I bought four restaurants at the time and we’ve been here since then and we’ve grown from four to fourteen stores throughout the ArkLaTex,” Griggs said.
He said in his current role he tries to educate the youth on taking advantage of opportunities that are in front of them.
“They don’t realize the opportunity and the benefits in working for McDonald’s. Fast food today is not seen as other some other careers today.”
He advises anyone interested in following a dream to do so and not to fear failure. But most importantly, love what you do.
“Find something that you enjoy doing, number one, that you are passionate about. Because every day is not going to be an easy day. Don’t be afraid to work hard.”