102: Real business success isn’t about making money; it’s about making a significant impact on the lives of others with Matt Thompson

Matt Thompson has been an owner-operator for Chick-fil-A for 18 years with his wife, Jill. Matt and Jill matt-thompson-picturehave two teenage children, which they enjoy seeing play sports and grow in the Lord. Matt serves as a board member of the Carolina Pregnancy Center, and he is a lay leader at First Baptist Church North Spartanburg.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • [2 min 23 sec] Tell us about your career journey. Currently owner-operator of Chick-Fil-A in Duncan, SC. At age 14, began working at Fuddruckers in Spartanburg, SC. Worked at Fuddrucker’s in Greenville during college years. Worked at Chick-Fil-A after that. Went to school at Clemson to get an industrial management degree. He and wife felt led to open a Chick-Fil-A. Opened first in 1999 at Hillcrest Mall in Spartanburg, SC. Released that contract and moved to his current Duncan, SC location in Dec. 2014.
  • [7 min 58 sec] Worst career failure? Stole a sleeve of cups from Fuddruckers while in college. Was caught, repented, and was forgiven. Lesson: The value of mercy and grace in dealing with others.


  • [19 min 55 sec] What was your biggest career success? Learning that real business success isn’t about making money; it’s about making a significant impact on the lives of others.
  • [24 min 00 sec] What three business tips can you offer to aspiring business owners? 1) Take care of the customer, 2) Do things the right way, 3) Protect your workplace environment from negative influences.
  • [27 min 28 sec] What one piece of career advice would you give a room of high school seniors? 1) Don’t expect everything to be handed to you, 2) Work for what you want, 3) Don’t be easily deterred from your dreams/goals, 4) Do not let your circumstances dictate who you are.
  • [29 min 11 sec] How can people connect with you? 1) Come by the Chick-Fil-A store in Duncan, SC, 2) matt.thompson@cfafranchisee.com


  • [32 min 00 sec] How do you use your workplace as your mission field? Partners with local organizations, both faith-based and non-faith-based. School outreaches with character education and leadership programs. Engage the hands, head, and heart of the people on his team. Work with them as a whole person, not just a worker whose job is to make the company money. Be a spiritual marker for his people.
  • [40 min 14 sec] Biggest weakness? Doesn’t offer encouragement and positive feedback enough to others.
  • [41 min 33 sec] Biggest strength? Vision casting. Setting the vision and constantly sharing the vision with the team.
  • [44 min 22 sec] Ever had a challenge to your faith in the workplace? Has grown spiritually as God has kept him back from growth opportunities in order to teach him lessons of trust.  God is sovereign in the circumstances. Trusting God by Jerry Bridges
  • [50 min 34 sec] Your number one personal habit for success? Making time for team and customers. Must be available to people to live out Ephesians 2:10 (KJV) – For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
  • [52 min 53 sec] Your number one business habit for success? Work/life balance so that he can be fresh at work. This requires being present both physically AND mentally with family and friends.
  • [56 min 35 sec] Productivity tool? Evernote
  • [58 min 11 sec] What one book would you recommend? Wooden on Leadership by John Wooden and Steve Jamison

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imgRobbie Romeiser is a commercial real estate broker, real estate instructor, and author of the daily devotional Today’s Quote From God (www.TodaysQuoteFromGod.com). Desiring to help his own children follow God’s calling in their lives, Robbie founded Career Callings (www.CareerCallings.net) to help people find, prepare for, and pursue the work God has called them to do. To have Robbie speak at your church, business, professional association, or civic club, please email Robbie at robbie@careercallings.net.