Restaurateur McEntee says success comes from keeping relevant, creating great customer experiences and serving in the community

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By Teva Todd
Dylan McEntee, owner of Mo's Enterprises, a chain of restaurants in Oregon, spoke at the Willes Center lecture series on Jan. 24.

Owner of Mo’s Enterprises Dylan McEntee explained to BYU-Hawaii students to be successful, businesses need to keep up with technology and trends, make sure clients are happy with their service, and be part of their community.

Opened in 1946 by his great-grandmother Mohava, he said the restaurant and food business is now heading into its fifth generation. On Jan. 24 at the BYU–Hawaii Willes Entrepreneur Lecture Series, McEntee shared the story of his family business has been run for 73 years.

“How do you stay relevant?” McEntee asked. “Through understanding your customers, social and economic trends, marketing trends, and innovating product and productions.”

McEntee said through utilizing demographic information he was able to make key changes in his business that helped him stay on top and be relevant. “Staying current with technology is super important. Our business used to be [where] you stand in line and then you get a table when one’s available. Now people don’t have the attention span that they used to have to stand in line. When people look at the line, they just keep on going.”

Through the use of an app called Know It, McEntee said, “Using your number you would receive a text from us indicating that your table is ready. This solved the issue of standing in line and was one way that helped us adjust to the younger generation.”

McEntee shared his last thoughts about managing customer experiences. “[Manage] the experience to make sure that when people leave, they don’t leave unhappy. This ensures that they will come back in the future.”

Rilee Villanueva, a student at BYUH studying biology, shared her thoughts on the lecture. “I liked how he related their success to how they made their customers feel and the experience they had while eating at their restaurants. It is really important how we make each interaction a good experience.”

Mo’s Enterprises entered the business world in 1946 when Mohava joined her friend, Freddy Kent, to start a cafe called “Freddie and Mo’s.” When Freddy became ill, Mo bought out the business, thus creating the legacy of Mo’s. Over the years, Mo’s has expanded into different locations around Oregon starting with Mo’s Annex, sister to Original Mo’s, across the street and overlooking Yaquina Bay. Now with eight locations covering the Oregon coast, Mo’s Enterprises continues to grow with its excellent customer service and home-style cooking.

After graduating from the University of Utah with a bachelor’s in hospitality and tourism, McEntee became the owner of his family's business, Mo’s Enterprises. McEntee said he has had the opportunity to work in all aspects of his business, starting with dishwashing at the age of 12. Now vice president of operations, McEntee said he oversees finances, computer systems, and social media. Beside his sister, Gabrielle McEntee-Wilson, vice president of marketing and public relations, they are now the caretakers of the fifth-generation family legacy.

Mo’s philosophy is to be an integral part of each community they reside in, he said, through volunteering and community involvement. As a community volunteer, McEntee served as city planning commissioner, president of the local merchant associations and coached youth softball and baseball. 

Date Published: 
Tuesday, January 29, 2019
Last Edited: 
Tuesday, January 29, 2019