Real Time Cases Announces Partnership with CAVA

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We’re excited to announce a new partnership with CAVA as part of our mission to bring innovative cases from ground-breaking companies into the classroom. Originating in Maryland, CAVA is the brainchild of three friends, Ike Grigoropolous, Ted Xenohristos, and Chef Dimitri Moshovitis, who wanted to bring their Greek culture via Mediterranean cuisine onto the dining table.

To date, CAVA Group owns and operates 5 CAVA Mezze locations as well as 50+ CAVA Grill locations, and produces a line of prepackaged dips and spreads available at Whole Foods. And now, CAVA aims for expansive growth with CAVA Grill, a fast-casual spin-off of the full-service dining experience. CAVA Grill offers a flavorful and healthy fast-casual restaurant experience featuring customizable salads and grain bowls.

Since launching CAVA Grill, CAVA has grown 75% year over year and raised over $95,000,000 across three rounds of fundraising. CAVA’s mission is to fuel full lives—with customers, teams and partners—through values of positivity, transparency and humility.

We’re excited to launch this partnership as both official and available to Real Time Cases users teaching across the Management and Marketing course areas. We have a total of seven video-based case studies involving CAVA, as outlined below. Each case includes a CEO overview, a background video for the department, and then the case itself.

  • Growth Hiring: Setting Team Members Up for Success 
  • Key Topics: Hiring, Organizational Behavior, Recruiting, Organizational Fit
  • As CAVA grows, so do its staffing needs. However, as a restaurant company, CAVA does not see much in the way of potential new hires seeking long-term career opportunities. This needs to change if Dave McKlveen, VP of People + Culture, is to combat turnover and create stability within the organization. How should CAVA approach hiring to reduce turnover?


  • Brand Consistency & Cohesion
  • Key Topics: Branding, Strategy, Brand Culture
  • As the company launches new CAVA Grill locations across the United States, the team will need to ensure brand consistency while appealing to broader and more diverse markets. Meg Schiffman, Director of Marketing, has established and disseminated brand standards internally, learning from experience via testing different marketing approaches. To get ahead of stresses brought about by CAVA’s aggressive growth, they will need a broader understanding of the brand’s core appeal so they can articulate it to customer prospects in new regions. How can CAVA make good on its brand promise with every consumer interaction?


  • Always Improving: Training for Optimal Operations & Services
  • Key Topics: Training, Lean Six Sigma
  • As a restaurant company, CAVA’s ability to grow effectively and efficiently is dependent on their team members’ ability to make the best decisions every day on the job. Team members are key to CAVA’s continued success, and as such, they require continuous training—from initial employee onboarding to rollouts of new initiatives and improvements to existing operations. Maintaining and improving training operations is one of Lori Goldstrohm’s jobs as VP of Operations Services. How should Goldstrohm approach improving training operations to ensure that CAVA has well-equipped, quality employees at every level?


  • Fueling Full Lives: Mission Driven at CAVA
  • Key Topics: Organizational Behavior, Strategy
  • As CAVA grows, Brett Schulman (CEO) and Dan Jones (COO) want to be sure they maintain stability despite rapid change by engaging and including employees in driving CAVA’s strategic direction. How can leadership at CAVA ensure alignment within and across teams?


  • Heatmapping the United States: Expansion at CAVA
  • Key Topics: Business Development, Real Estate, Strategy, Growth
  • CAVA is opening 12+ CAVA Grill locations a year in an effort to rapidly spread the brand. People are still learning what CAVA is today, and in new markets, the stores tell that story. To optimize their return on what is typically a $2.5M investment per location, Brent Renner, VP of Real Estate, and Jeff Polhemus, VP of Development, have to work together to streamline the process and reduce overall costs. How do Renner and Polhemus cut costs or achieve a better return while staying on track with CAVA’s mission, values, and strategic objectives?


  • Whipping Up a New Era: Digital Ordering at CAVA
  • Key Topics: Fast Casual, QSR, Digital Ordering
  • For CAVA, digital ordering makes CAVA’s food accessible to consumers short on time and ensures they stay competitive in the market. However, digital ordering also challenges current operating standards and asks them to rethink customer experience through different touch points with the CAVA brand. In light of these challenges, how can CAVA increase the return from digital ordering revenues?


  • The Cost of Doing Business – The Financial Side of Food Service Delivery
  • Key Topics: Fast Casual, Business Development, Finance
  • Chris Lloyd, CAVA’s VP of Finance and Business Development, is faced with a challenge critical to CAVA Grill’s continued growth: delivery. For a quick service restaurant (QSR), the opportunity to capture more customers on a daily basis with delivery is significant, though feasibility and cost considerations for a low-margin offering can make implementation difficult. The two primary options Lloyd presents are in-house or partnership with a national delivery provider. These options become more meaningful when weighed against CAVA’s plans for growth. What delivery option presents the greatest opportunity for success on CAVA’s terms?


Log into the Real Time Cases platform today to see the videos and review the comprehensive Teaching Notes available with each case. Through this collaboration with CAVA, we aim to prepare tomorrow’s leaders with today’s challenges.

About Real Time Cases

Real Time Cases’ mission is to serve as the bridge between the higher education classroom and the professional world. Real Time Cases delivers engaging video-based activities that make it easier for educators to let students address real problems facing relevant companies in the moment, as they are happening. With CAVA’s fast growth and the opportunity for students to make an impact in their business, the partnership between Real Time Cases and CAVA  could not be a better fit for our customers. This is also a very exciting occasion as CAVA is added to our list of current partners, including Team Liquid, KIND, CustomInk, WeddingWire, and many more.

Yunzhe Zhou helps people bridge the skills gap through experiential learning – by creating 30 day implementation projects. You can check out her writings on accelerated learning and experiments on life + work here.