It’s a tale as old as time. A small, local business struggles to compete against large corporations flush with cash and a streamlined application process. Nothing about that sentence is shocking to hear. But what if we changed a few words in that sentence? Maybe take out’ struggles to’ and replace it with something like…’ successfully competes?’
That’s Taylor Matthew’s story, and she’s still telling it, five years after she started FOOD Richmond Hill, the city’s premier restaurant delivery service. The company was born without food delivery services such as DoorDash and Uber Eats available in the locale. Those companies and others have since saturated the city’s market with fancy applications, abundant coupons, and quick delivery. But Matthews has taken a different approach to building her business. It all started with defining her role in her community.
Having a local tie is Matthews’s key to success with FOOD Richmond Hill as she says that her customers and area restaurants appreciate doing business with a company headquartered in town. “We have a lot of advantages in Richmond Hill,” Matthews says. “A lot of our [clients] are local, so they see the advantage of working with another local business…we have regular customers that have used us for years,” she explains.
Matthews also uses an approach with the company that differentiates her from those larger, nationwide competitors. She chooses a system that works for her staff.
“Our model is a little different than Doordash’s,” she says. “Whereas they operate with whoever is available, we schedule our workers so that someone is always available.”
Success is a theme when it comes to Matthew’s work. But like any small business owner, she walked a long road to get to this point.
“Sometimes it never feels like it’s enough,” she admits. “You need to figure out ‘what is good enough for me?'” Otherwise, you’ll just really run yourself ragged.”
No matter the trudge or sprint, she keeps pushing, always looking for new opportunities to make life a little easier for others. A driven entrepreneur and community participant, she also owns a cleaning company called Sparkling Queens 912 and is the administrative director at her church.
“I love being able to impact people,” she says. “I try to be very honest with people. When you start seeing a return on that, it’s just very powerful.”
It’s not always hustling and grind for Matthews, and she encourages others to pursue it only when necessary. Her advice?
“I read all these leadership books, and I always read that sleep comes last,” Matthews says, laughing. “And that’s just not possible, in my opinion. If I don’t get sleep, I’m just not capable of thinking.”
If you’re in the Richmond Hill community, support local and order your next restaurant delivery from FOOD Richmond Hill’s app or website here.