After attending college at Fresno State University his first semester of college, Jason Khan kickstarted his entrepreneurial career by opening a Wingstop near the campus in 2009. At that time, he was one of Wingstop’s youngest brand partners. He now owns 16 restaurants in northern California, and truly embodies Wingstop’s values of being hungry, humble and smart.
What made you want to be a brand partner?
I grew up eating at Wingstop and have always loved it. It was our “hangout spot” in high school in Modesto, California, and when I attended Fresno State, the closest one was an hour and a half away in all directions. I always knew Fresno would be a great location for one, so after I graduated from college I opened my first restaurant right across from the campus.
What’s the most rewarding thing about being a brand partner?
There are so many rewarding things about being in this business, but I would say the first thing is being able to provide jobs for so many people in one of the most economically deprived areas of California. The second part is putting a product out there that you know brings excitement and enjoyment to people’s lives. When I first opened in Fresno, it was a new concept for the area, and it was really fulfilling to see how fast it took off in popularity.
Do you have any tips for people thinking about starting a business?
I still go back to my college campuses from time to time where some of my old professors have invited me to speak to their entrepreneurship classes. The tips that I would have for people wanting to get into this business are to be resilient, persistent and don’t take no for an answer. You’re going to get shot down several times, but there’s always a path to get to where you want to be if you just keep trying.
Specifically, in times like these, I would also say if you own a business make sure you keep your team’s morale high. We are an essential business, so I have been present in all of my restaurants, visiting my team members to ensure we lead by example.