Last year, Nation's Restaurant News awarded five leading executives with the annual Golden Chain award, representing outstanding leadership and brand stewardship. Each honoree was interviewed by a former Golden Chain winner in a top-to-top discussion covering strategies for success, brand victories and challenges and how best to motivate teams.

In this exclusive audio clip, Ray Blanchette, chief executive of Joe's Crab Shack, is interviewed by Wallace B. Doolin, who won a Golden Chain award in 1998 as CEO of T.G.I. Friday’s. Doolin is currently the chairman of TDn2K. NRN editor-in-chief Sarah Lockyer facilitated the interviews.

Condensed versions of these interviews were published last year. NRN is now making the full interviews available in audio format in an exclusive series, Lessons in Leadership, available on and podcasting platform SoundCloud.

More Lessons in Leadership:

Kelly C. Baltes, Cheddar's Casual Cafe: Striving for greatness
Peter Cancro, Jersey Mike's: Building a growing chain
Dan Cathy, Chick-fil-A: Developing a business through generations
Michael Hislop, Corner Bakery: Business and career evolution