Chief Financial Officer of NORMS Restaurants
“A True Trailblazer”
Judy Lewis, Chief Financial Officer, NORMS Restaurants, through her immense experience and plethora of skills, has streamlined several processes within payroll and accounting for NORMS. She had transformed work like data entry by eliminating manual entry, generating accrual worksheets by using GL downloads to book period-end entries efficiently, and creating financial reports when they converted to a new GL system to display results efficiently. “I have also developed the finance department into a more proactive department which provides financial insight and analysis for new initiatives, and I championed our upgrade to a new POS system which allows for more flexibility in the online order process, streamlined paperwork, and cost cutting in general.”
According to Judy, she has always ensured to be involved with any mentorship program to provide career advice that will help other women advance themselves in their roles. “I try my best to be a role model to younger women at the company and I hope that my lifelong C-suite aspirations can inspire other women to be the best that they can be as well.” For Judy, Sheryl Sandberg from Facebook is a role model as she created the organization ‘Lean In’. “I love how she has really broken through the glass ceiling and become a trailblazer for women in the workforce, constantly driving us forward in our careers.” Armed with these ideologies, Judy has been spearheading NORMS towards greater heights.
NORMS was born out of post-war delight and prosperity as a place ‘where life happens.’ A place where guests could come together, eat a fresh, delicious, and reasonably priced meal with friends and family, and celebrate the joys of life. NORMS can thwart market competition by giving customers a real value proposition and keeping their atmosphere warm and inviting. “We have been able to do this by keeping costs low. From a G&A perspective we run very lean and mean, using technology to make jobs more efficient and sharing employees between departments,” she explains. “We keep restaurant costs down by ensuring that the menu is full of limited time offers and focusing on forward buys. We really shine in the LTO (limited time offer) space which helps keep costs down since we buy well in advance of a big promotion.”
Judy elucidates that the biggest problem they have all faced as of late is the pandemic, and it was certainly a group effort to come up with all of the solutions to the challenges that it caused. Whether it was transforming to outdoor dining, creating grocery items packages that included toilet paper, involvement in community feeding programs, catering vaccine clinic meals, etc., the team could react quickly and figure out what people in the community needed and then deliver it to them. “During the pandemic we were faced with finding ways to serve our guests while keeping them and our employees safe. I oversee an IT department that was able to deploy a new POS System during this past year which allowed us to implement services that grew rapidly because of the need for safety. These include online ordering, contactless pay via QR codes, and expansion of our delivery services.”
NORMS recently implemented a new guest referral bonus program to help combat the current hiring crisis and reward guests with NORMS Bucks in exchange for referrals. Once someone is referred and hired, works for 90 days with a minimum of 4 shifts, and remains in good standing, the guest who referred them will receive $200 in NORMS Bucks. “We think this is certainly an innovative approach from a business standpoint, but it’s also an incredible way to get the community involved, get people back to work, and directly benefit our customers,” says Judy. “I’d like to highlight the unbelievable job that the NORMS team has done throughout the past year. We really banded together to shift our focus from growth to survival, not only as a company, but also as a community, with several initiatives that were born out of the pandemic, such as the involvement with Meals on Wheels, carrying on to continually benefit locals in need.” On a personal note, Judy is an avid runner having completed 54 marathons in 43 states and is on track to complete a marathon in her 50th state by the end of 2023. IEWL
Chief Financial Officer of NORMS Restaurants
Best Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. 24/7. From Fluffy Hotcakes to ½ lb. USDA Burgers to Juicy & Thick Steaks & The Best baby Back Ribs in SoCal. NORMS has something for everyone. Open 24/7.