Walk-On’s CEO Landry Talks Culture, Leadership And Partnering With Drew Brees

In this edition of our Corporate Competitor Podcast, Founder and CEO of Walk-On's Sports Bistreaux sat down with longtime Sports Illustrated Associate Editor Don Yaeger to tell his underdog story and share what it is like to be business partners with Drew Brees.

Those familiar with college sports will recognize the term walk-on as a reference to unrecruited athletes that choose to try out or “walk-on” to a team. It’s a tough road to take but one that Brandon Landry successfully navigated as a basketball player at Louisiana State University.

When Brandon graduated from LSU, he and his teammate Jack Warner took their sports bar business proposal they submitted for a class project and made it a reality.

“From the start, we wanted Walk-On’s to be a sports bar that was about more than burgers and beer and watching TV,” noted Brandon. “We wanted our business to celebrate the heart of the walk-on lifestyle, which is about doing your best to serve your team in whatever role you have and putting the team first.”

The first Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux opened in the shadows of LSU’s football stadium. Since then, many have taken notice. The first was ESPN. They named Walk-On’s the “#1 Sports Bar in America.” Then, recently retired New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees expressed an interest in the business and ultimately joined the Walk-On’s team as a co-owner.

Today, with more than 100 locations in the works across 15 states, Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux operates with a mission of delivering a memorable game day experience with a taste of Louisiana created by an All-American team. And the best part? The culture they work to inspire in every employee celebrates being a great teammate.

In recounting his journey, CEO Brandon Landry offers sharp lessons for business leaders eager for insights on aligning staff, scaling company culture, raising the bar on expectations, and knowing when — and how — to change course when things are not going to plan…including holding a funeral when moving past failure. Listen now!


3:00   Seek internal validation.

7:00   Make every member of your team feel valued.

15:00  Illustrate change so all employees understand.

25:00  Make sure your company’s culture is felt, not just posted on the wall.


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