Business Spotlight: Stadium

This Business Spotlight is the first in a series of posts highlighting Small Business Week (Sept. 12-18, 2021) in Gahanna!


Stadium, (101 Mill St. Suite B105) is one of Creekside Gahanna’s most vibrant small businesses.

Stadium’s owner-operator Phil Richardson uses a variety of techniques to retain 27 employees and recruit talent for its seven open positions. Since it opened in June 2020, Stadium has retained nearly half its original staff despite the turbulence across almost all industries.

Richardson, an industry veteran with more than 20 years of experience, was previously a general manager at The Walrus and Pecan Pennies, both located in downtown Columbus. Phil follows in his grandfather’s footsteps – who operated George’s BBQ restaurants in Oklahoma. Today, Phil carries on secret family recipes through Stadium’s menu offerings. 

Despite a nationwide workforce shortage in the food and beverage industry, Phil has found success by offering an employee referral bonus coupled with a 90-day new employee retention bonus. To retain employees, Richardson proactively creates a sense of vulnerability among his crew, enabling them to comfortably approach management with their concerns and needs.  

“I ask all my employees to be especially understanding as we navigate the unpredictable pandemic. This helps forge a better team environment, especially as we consider the impact of being understaffed.” 

Richardson not only provides hands-on training, but he also takes his crew on field trips to better understand the broader supply chain process and unique production systems of local brewers.   

“Understanding the food and beverage industry is key in helping employees appreciate the craft.  Employees become more empowered to participate in company decisions. I take seriously customer service training by instilling proactive, rapid engagement with all customers,” Richardson explained.   

To cement Stadium’s place at Creekside, Richardson’s team develops strong relationships with local customers, making Stadium incredibly welcoming. He described how local workers often come by after work. Conversely, Richardson is looking to grow Stadium’s regional brand by driving foot traffic from across the entire Columbus metropolitan area into Gahanna’s bustling Creekside District.