Behind the Scenes: Piada

Piada’s success is no secret. The continually expanding fast-casual restaurant concept was voted Metropreneur’s top high-growth small business of 2013.

Behind Founder Chris Doody is a duo that has been a part of the carefully curated concept since its inception.

Jamy Bolling is Corporate Chef, Partner & Director of Operations – a title that shows the variety of roles one individual can encompass at a growing organization.

“I oversee operations and the day-to-day responsibilities of upholding the Piada Lifestyle,” Bolling says. Inside the restaurant he oversees each shift and provides guidance and leadership for team members and chefs. Outside of the restaurant, he is always looking for was to improve operations.

“Each day I am working with all food and non-food items that enter the restaurant, and I collaborate with our Executive Culinary Chef, Mike Bomberger, on all areas of operations and culinary,” Bolling says. ”

As the Director of Design and Brand Development, David Berg is the man behind Piada’s sleek look. Berg oversees the interior and exterior design of each location, as well as the overall brand concept. “I now weigh in on brand development, from packaging design [and] menu development, down to details like what music plays in the store,” he says. “To sum it up, I help craft the experience from when you park your car to when you eat Chef Mike’s amazing food.”


Between the two, they oversee practically every detail involved in the Piada experience, helping Doody to executive his vision.

“Having the chance to be involved in so many areas has really given me perspective from the eyes of different departments, whereas with a larger organization, you would not necessarily see at that detail,” Bolling says.

Both appreciate that being part of a small business allows for a meaningful influence on ideas and details.

“I enjoy being hands on with the development of a new concept and ability to impact each guest experience firsthand,” Bolling says.

Berg notes how in a small business, communal working environments facilitate the flow of information. Everybody knows a bit about what others are accomplishing. “Everyone still stays in their lane but they are able to lend help when the project needs it,” he says.

Berg and Bolling were confident in the Piada brand from the beginning.

“When Chris described the concept and you looked at the offerings in that category there simply were none,” Berg says. “It fit the perfect niche.”

Piada’s rapid and continued success demonstrates the potential of a highly detailed and well-thought-out plan.

“I knew we would be successful,” Bolling says. “I thoroughly believe due to our research and development of the concept before opening the doors day one – from the products we use, to the way we build the teams and provided opportunities – that we set ourselves up for success.”

Bolling says being part of a growing business is exciting and rewarding, but can be overwhelming as they continue to push for the high brand standard they have set. However, their growth has ultimately forced them to tightly guard and focus on what made the concept successful.

“We have been very diligent with the development and implementation of our training, tools and maintenance program standards to keep us where we want to be,” Bolling says.

While the company obviously has a solid system in place, there’s no time to slow down.

“The concept of coasting isn’t in the Doody Handbook!” Berg says. “It’s always what’s next or how can we do it better, and that’s exactly why I work for Chris Doody.”

A brand can’t be successful with out driven employees like Berg and Bolling, but each person works hard to contribute to the success of the company. Building the Piada team is part of what Bolling loves about his job.

“It has been extremely rewarding to have been and continue to be such a big part of peoples’ opportunity for advancement and creating careers for people as the company grows,” he says.

For Berg, being a part of Piada has expanded his skill set. He owns successful design firm, David M Berg Ltd, that specializes in high-end residential and vacation homes. Piada has exposed him to smaller, entrepreneurial firms and greatly influenced his business acumen.

“I get to expand my design skills from just interior design to now building a brand, a national brand,” he says. “I am learning management skills, business skills and team building skills that I would never have had the exposed to in my own firm.”

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Photos provided by Piada.