Training Top 125 Best Practice: Penn Station East Coast Subs’ First-Line Supervisor Training

Training programs for new franchisees and general managers are validated through a 1,000-point test, and verification of skills, understanding, and leadership.

The First-Line Supervisor Development program is one of the cornerstones of Penn Station East Coast Subs’ training and operational success; essentially the same program is applied for both new franchisees and general managers. 

Program Details

For new managing owners, the program entails several different training techniques. First, there is classroom training, which takes place at the corporate office. This training focuses on the company culture, basics of operational disciplines such as controlling costs and scheduling labor, as well as beginning the process of learning operational procedures and policies. 

Second, there is an intensive, four-week training program at the corporate restaurant, working side-by-side with a full-time Training professional, as well as the general manager and staff of the restaurant. The training involves: 

  • Developing operational proficiencies at all stations
  • Learning administrative tasks such as inventory, ordering, and cash management
  • Learning employee management strategies, including interviewing, hiring, training, and scheduling the crew
  • Receiving constant reinforcement of policies and procedures

This portion of the training is predominantly on-the-job learning, with some classroom work, print media, and training videos. There is also a weekly meeting with Training professionals and members of the Operations department to validate understanding, answer any questions, and foster an in-depth understanding of the financial structure and profitability of a successful franchise.

The Managing Owner training also involves training meetings with all department heads and marketing partners to familiarize participants with the staff, responsibilities, and company culture as it relates to each department. This training is validated through a 1,000-point test, and verification of skills, understanding, and leadership by the Training department, as well as weekly follow-up training phone support and a 12-week-follow-up session to validate results and evaluate the implementation of the material presented during training. 

For general managers, the training program is essentially the same, except they are trained by the franchisee rather than the corporate Training Department. Their learning also is validated by a 1,000-point test and verification of skills, understanding, and leadership by an area representative. 


Over the last three years, test scores for general managers have improved by an average of 9 percent, while scores for all testers (general managers and managing owners) have improved by 6.2 percent.

The Managing Owner program has resulted in new franchisees being prepared to leave training and open their own franchise restaurant. Success is validated through Penn Station East Coast Subs’ industry-leading success rate (meaning restaurants that are still open). 


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