You ask, they answer: Antique tacos in hard work, team culture and more.

Meet the owners:

Ashley and Rick Ortiz, Antique Taco

With Antique Taco, Ashley and Rick combine their family, their work, and their two greatest passions. A favorite of Chicago’s Wicker Park and Bridgeport neighborhoods, the restaurant serves fresh tacos and margaritas.

The answer to your question about starting and running a small business is better than business owners who have done it themselves.

This month, we’re partnering with featured business owners Grit and Greenlights: A Small Business Story with Matthew McConnell To answer questions from our social media viewers.

Here, Ashley Ortiz – who owns Chicago’s famous antique taco along with her husband Rick – shares what she has learned about successful restaurants and team building.

What is the biggest challenge when running a restaurant with your wife?

We are having trouble stopping work. Hospitality is more of a lifestyle, so it’s hard not to talk about food!

Have you noticed any major changes in the type of things that job seekers are asking or looking for before Covid?

Culture has always been important in Antique Taco but nowadays it is even more important. We do quarterly education classes and we try to measure team goals and interests.

What is the best quality that you have helped to become a successful entrepreneur / restaurant?

I would say get your hands dirty, there is no substitute for hard work. Even if you can’t do everything well, make sure you try everything and understand the challenges.

Owning a restaurant during COVID was certainly challenging. What was the secret of your survival – and do you think that you have learned something that you will carry with you after the epidemic?

Owning a restaurant has always kept me on my toes, but Covid has forced me to see what it would be like to lose it overnight. We took it day by day because everything changed so fast. My biggest lesson about Kovid is to take more risks, change if you don’t do something and don’t be afraid to do what is best for your business.

What advice are you going to start for a potential restaurant owner?

Ask yourself why you are doing this, as it may change from year to year but always keep asking yourself questions and it will help guide you.

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