Restaurant Sr. Principal Design Lead- Innovation


The Design Innovation Sr Principal Design Lead is a corporate professional position responsible for providing strategic design direction on the initiatives that impact Restaurant Development and Restaurant Design.

As a Sr. Principal Design Lead on the Restaurant Design Innovation Team, you will be responsible for leading a design-thinking approach to create experiences and environments that are industry-leading and relevant to our guests, team members, and Operators. As part of a multidisciplinary team, you will tackle all aspects of the design process from defining user research methodologies, physical and/or digital prototyping and validating design solutions for our restaurant chain. You must be able to clearly define project goals and parameters in an ambiguous state of imagining future needs of the business. You must be an ambitious problem solver, flexible, and able to succeed within a cross-functional environment. The ideal candidate for this position will be, at ease combining business strategy with design methodologies to execute ideas into solid designs and experiences.

  • This role will provide Design expertise to multiple Big Move and Strategic Team initiatives that will have a board impact across the organization.
    • Leads vision and execution of innovation projects
    • Provides guidance on how the organizational initiatives will impact the design of New Restaurants, Existing Restaurants, and Rollouts
    • Leads the strategies of future restaurant designs and experiences
    • Leads the creation of design solutions that will alleviate pain points and create growth opportunities for Operators, Team Members, and Guest
  • This role requires a curious leader who is a self-starter and can inspire others
  • Build and manage appropriate cross-functional teams and partners from across the business to ensure successful design solutions
  • Ensure innovation process includes various approvals/inputs from key stakeholder such as Operators, Field Operations, Marketing, Food Safety, IT, Risk Management and Restaurant Development teams
  • Leverage key insights from Operators, Team Members, Guests, and industry trends to identify future design projects


  • Develop innovation project plans including:
    • Scope
    • Project Teams - internal staff, consultants, agencies, and vendors
    • Timelines
    • Budgets
  • Oversee and be accountable for Design Innovation consultants, contractors, and vendors. Specifically, responsible for building and managing outsourcing/agency strategy for various workstreams.
  • Provide initiative report outs to executive leadership, Big Move, and Strategy Teams
  • Estimate, track, and analyze budgets
  • Identify a communication plan to keep key stakeholders informed
  • Develop processes and systems to ensure that innovation projects are aligned with corporate and departmental goals
  • Lead Operator innovation sessions to vet new design solutions

Preferred Qualifications

  • Bachelor's Degree in Design (Service Design, Architecture, Interior Design, Industrial Design, Engineering, etc.) or Design Management
  • Experience in restaurant design, operations, customer experience, product development, innovation management

Travel Requirements


Required Level of Education

Bachelor's Degree

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