Chief Operating Officer
Chicago, IL Office of the CEO
We are happy people making people happy!

Round The Table Hospitality (RTTH), a family of companies that includes Blue Plate Catering, tesori  trattoria & bar, and Wild Blue, seeks a dynamic and visionary Chief Operating Officer. Our future COO is a balance of entrepreneur, savvy business operator and thoughtful innovator.  As champion of our 2020 Vision, the COO will design and launch new lines of business under RTTH to grow into a multi-faceted food service organization. 

The COO will collaborate directly with CEO, Jim Horan, who’s not going anywhere!  Jim launched the catering business with a single employee and a van in 1983. Over the past 30+ years, the company has cultivated relationships and developed a reputation for delicious fare and exceptional service and hospitality. 

With multiple endeavors beyond Blue Plate, the family of companies employs as many as 600 employees during peak season at its restaurant in downtown Chicago and catering company in the West Loop. RTTH is now based at Larkin Hall, a newly constructed, state-of-the-art, 80,000 square foot headquarters and venue space just west of the Fulton Market District. 

The organization’s success is centered around growing the company from the inside out; gathering diverse ideas and perspectives around the table (It’s not just our name!); promoting a collaborative culture; delivering outstanding, customizable service; building strong relationships in the community; developing an intrapreneurial incubator program, Wild Blue; and launching future lines of business and brands to include retail, wine cellar and bakery.

The COO is an experienced, hospitality business leader who will inspire those around her/him to innovate and operationalize new ideas while blending the legacy of the catering business with strategic plans for organization-wide growth. This COO will be a rare talent - Are you that rare talented leader?

Position Summary:

The Chief Operating Officer will oversee design, enhancement, implementation, and reporting of Round the Table Hospitality’s (RTTH) operating companies with a specialized focus on the development of new business lines. The role collaborates with the CEO to develop RTTH management services and operational strategies, and is charged with facilitating these efforts across operations. As a key member of the RTTH leadership team, the COO assumes a leadership role in building, implementing, and overseeing all operational systems, processes, workflows, and procedures. The COO plays a critical role in providing leadership, management and vision to ensure proper controls, administrative and reporting procedures, and necessary systems are in place to effectively grow the organization to ensure financial strength and operating efficiency of RTTH.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Work closely with the CEO to develop and accomplish goals and strategic plans for growth
  • Oversee operations for RTTH family of operating companies (Blue Plate, Tesori, Wild Blue, etc.) and new business opportunities to include the development of corporate catering.
  • Operationalize visions by leading the development of organization-wide growth strategies and business plans.  
  • Motivate and lead a high performance management team; mentor direct reports to cultivate skills and to increase consciousness of the inter-relationship between each department in the operations groups. 
  • Translate the strategic plan to staff to ensure support; modify plans in response to changing internal and external factors.
  • Design and deliver an agile organizational structure that enables the movement of people and resources quickly to capture new market opportunities.
  • Set comprehensive goals for performance and growth; regularly reviews RTTH operational performance and productivity.
  • Direct the functions of budgeting, accounting, and reporting; keeping leadership team informed of operating results in terms of costs, trends and increased profit opportunities. 
  • Analyze revenue, profit and cash flow opportunities for RTTH operations and recommend actions.
  • Establish operational policies that support and promote RTTH operations culture and vision.
  • Provide leadership in expansion activities (investments, acquisitions, corporate alliances).
  • Manage relationships with external clients and internal partners.
  • Uphold, safeguard and promote RTTH values and philosophy relating particularly to ethics, integrity, and corporate (social) responsibility.
  • Measure effectiveness and efficiency of operational processes both internally and externally and finds ways to improve processes.
  • Partner with sales leadership and teams to develop strategic sales plans based on organization goals that will promote sales growth and increase guest satisfaction.
  • Manage and develop leaders to include selection, work allocation, training, coaching and mentoring, problem resolution, performance evaluation and feedback and corrective actions.


Job Requirements:

Education and Experience:  The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.

  • Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality, Marketing, Business or a related industry.
  • Minimum of 15 years of comprehensive and progressive experience within the hospitality industry. 
  • Executive- level leadership experience to include development of strategic plans for both operations and new business development.
  • Previous experience executing business expansion plans to include new products, services and markets.

Essential Qualifications:   To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. 

  • Ability to demonstrate strong affinity for Blue Plate’s Core Values:

Exceed Expectations

Nurture Relationships 

Honor and Respect all People

A spire to Greatness 

Nourish and Inspire 

Communicate and Share Feedback

Enrich our Community

Learn and Lead

Innovate and Create 

Foster Teamwork


  • Demonstrated skill with developing long-term strategic plans
  • Results oriented, with focus on continuous improvement 
  • Flexible and able to multi-task; can work within a fast-moving environment, while also driving toward clarity and solutions
  • Demonstrated resourcefulness in setting priorities and guiding investment in people and systems
  • Entrepreneurial-minded
  • Proven leadership with the ability to inspire others to work toward a common goal and reach their potential
  • Strong business acumen with advanced knowledge of financial management disciplines to include but not limited to – P&L, budget design and management, financial analysis, and ROI
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills with the ability to prepare and deliver clear, concise reports and presentations that are understandable by the target audience
  • Ability to manage confidential information and maintain its integrity
  • Proven ability to handle multiple priorities simultaneously, data analysis, setting and meeting organizational goals, and time management
  • Proven ability to influence thinking, and apply complicated strategies
  • Proven ability to build relationships, communicate effectively, and present ideas confidently and persuasively
  • Proven business development, and negotiation experience
  • Strong computer skills that include proficiency with MS Office applications

Language Skills: 

Ability to read, write and speak English proficiently. Bilingual skills preferred.

Physical Demands:  The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential function.

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear  
  • Frequently required to stand, walk, sit, use hands to feel; reach with hand and arms, and stoop, kneel or crouch.  
  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 40 pounds
  • Specific vision requirements include the ability to see at close range, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus
  • May require more than 40 hours per week to perform the essential duties of the position

Work Environment:  The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is exposed to weather conditions prevalent at the time
  • The noise level may include that of a combination of both a typical restaurant and office environment

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