“Waitr” CEO Tells Entrepreneurs At Conference, ‘You Cannot Do This Alone’

By Dan Boudreaux
The Advocate, Baton Rouge, La.

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) The founder of food delivery app “Waitr” shares the highs and lows of starting, growing and exiting a startup.

The Advocate, Baton Rouge, La.

Hot on the heels of Thursday’s announcement that he was selling Waitr for $308 million, Chris Meaux, the founder and CEO of the popular food delivery app gave an audience of business professionals and entrepreneurs in Lafayette his advice on how to start and grow their own businesses.

Meaux told the crowd at Opportunity Machine’s annual OM Innovation Conference that one of the most important things he learned on his journey building Waitr is that when a start up is just getting off the ground, you can’t just pay people to make it successful.

Waitr grew up within the walls Opportunity Machine, which incubates new companies Lafayette.

“One of the mistakes I made was that I thought I could pay people to do the things that were necessary to make a start up successful and the reality is that you just can’t,” Meaux said. “Even if you have the money to pay them, they will never be as passionate about it as you will, they will never ask the questions you would, they will never develop the product the way you would. They won’t do any of those things.”

For Meaux, the responsibility when it comes to a new business, first and foremost, starts with the entrepreneur.

While he did say bringing people on people who can help you at the start, be they family or friends or invested partners, you have to lead by example and do everything at first.

“I took calls. I listened to complaints. My mother had to go do deliveries. She hated it, but she knew that if the company was going to be successful, she had to do it,” Meaux said. “If you’re an entrepreneur and you’re starting a business, these are the things that have to be done and you have to do them.”

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