It’s surreal for Eric Titus when he reflects on the last 30 years of his career with Buffalo Wild Wings.
He began working as a cook at the original restaurant in Columbus, Ohio, in the summer of 1987 — just five years after the brand had launched. He was just a freshman at the time while attending Ohio State University and came across the help wanted ad while scouring the student newspaper for a job.
“When I started, Buffalo Wild Wings was very different than what it is today.” Eric Titus, Franchisee, Buffalo Wild Wings
“The restaurant was pretty small and we’d show MTV on the television instead of sports. I believe we only had about six locations at the time.” Eric said.
Just a college student at the time, Eric’s career transitioned quickly in his brief time at Buffalo Wild Wings. He moved out of the kitchen and into an hourly shift supervisor position shortly after starting. Before he’d even graduated, Eric took over as the general manager at two Columbus restaurant locations.
As he moved up the ranks at Buffalo Wild Wings, he remembers witnessing first-hand nearly every step of the brand’s growth.
“Being at the location on the campus of Ohio State, we started realizing early on that we needed to cater to the local sports events — the Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns and of course the Ohio State Buckeyes,” he said.
“People started asking to watch those games, and we as a company started seeing this evolution into what the brand is today: the home of wings, beer and sports.”
As Buffalo Wild Wings continued to grow, so did Eric’s list of responsibilities. Just a few years after graduating from Ohio State, he was tasked with overseeing nine restaurants in Columbus, Minneapolis and Pittsburgh. By 1995, he had franchised his own restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky, while continuing to work as a regional manager within the company.
“I realized the pace the business was growing, and I thought there would be some great opportunities down the road.
I never would have envisioned how big this brand would get.” Eric Titus, Franchisee, Buffalo Wild Wings
For Eric, he never imagined what he’d be apart of when he first joined Buffalo Wild Wings more than three decades ago as a cook. While reflecting where the brand came from and how it’s grown over the years, he couldn’t be more excited for where Buffalo Wild Wings is headed within the Inspire Brands family.
“Under Inspire Brands, we’re going to focus our efforts on making Buffalo Wild Wings a truly iconic brand around the world,” Eric said.
“We are very excited about our future.”