Pizza Deliveries Get Ready for the Big Day

Super Bowl Sunday is typically the biggest day of the year for pizza deliveries. Madeleine Brand talks to Jeff Dufficy, a Domino's Pizza franchise owner, about how delivery workers get ready for the big day. Some hold pep rallies in the morning, and still other drivers equip their cars with satellite radios to keep track of lulls in the game, when orders generally spike.

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MADELEINE BRAND, host:

The super bowl, this weekend, isn't just the most important event in football; it's also a championship day for pizza delivery. Sunday is the biggest one-day revenue generator for the pizza business and no one knows this better than Domino's pizza. Besides stocking up on extra dough some Domino's franchise owners are taking extra steps to get employees mentally psyched for the big day. Lots of deliveries on Sunday.

Jeff Dufficy owns a Domino's Pizza franchise in Foxboro, Massachusetts and he joins us now. How are you?

Mr. JEFF DUFFICY (Domino's Pizza Franchise owner): Hi, I'm very good, thanks.

BRAND: So I understand you actually have pep rallies for your employees?

Mr. DUFFICY: Yeah, it started the first time, with the Patriots. We are die hard fans up here in New England; and it started the first time the Patriots made the play offs back in '96. And we were just so excited about the game and them being in the playoffs, we kind of went a little over the top. And started doing some jumping jacks and push-ups and it kind of stuck with the football season ever since.

BRAND: So your employees go out into the parking lot and do jumping jacks?

Mr. DUFFICY: Yeah, what we do is before, you know, it is the biggest game of the year for us and actually football and pizza is just one of those things that as soon as this season starts, we all are just very revved up. So what we do is huddle up in the lobby. We do the Domino's cheer. We go out in the parking lot. We usually do 10 or 15 jumping jacks, and 10 push-ups. It gets the blood flowing. We're ready for the big game and we go right from there.

BRAND: What is the Domino's cheer?

Mr. DUFFICY: Like I'll get everyone together. We'll be, who are we? Domino's Pizza. What are we? Number 1. What's our goal? Sell more pizza, have more fun. And then we'll high-five each other and then we get out into the parking lot, we'll bang out 10 or 15 push-ups and 10 or 15 jumping jacks. We come back in, we're ready for the rush.

BRAND: Wow. Well, you have to also be careful, because there were some scandals in the past, in recent past of Domino's Pizza guys driving to quickly and getting into accidents.

Mr. DUFFICY: Way back when there was, but for us the speed is in the store and that's why we really got to be ready for the rush.

BRAND: Right, right.

Mr. DUFFICY: We still try to get every pizza there in less than thirty minutes. You know, one of the great things about the Super Bowl is there really is nobody on the streets. So it's one of the best days of the year to be out there delivering pizza.

BRAND: So are the phones just ringing off the hook during halftime or during commercial breaks?

Mr. DUFFICY: You know our phone orders just start ramping up right until kick off. And then we started putting televisions in our stores just because when we know that there is a commercial coming, usually when the commercials hit, you know, we get another big wave of phone orders. Funny thing is when it's a really, really close game and people are riveted to the sets, they're not making phone calls; but as soon as that play is over, they go to a TV break, then we'll get a rush of phone orders. And so for us it's like our first down, our second down, our third down, when we know they are going to go to a TV commercial.

BRAND: And how many pizzas are we talking about?

Mr. DUFFICY: Well, we've peaked out, in some years, like 280 pizzas in an hour.

BRAND: That's a lot of pizza.

Mr. DUFFICY: That's a lot of excitement.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Mr. DUFFICY: That's a lot of reason to get up and exercise, right? You are going to be busy for four hours. So we've got to be ready.

BRAND: Jeff Dufficy owns 12 Domino's Franchises in the Foxboro, Massachusetts area. And Jeff Dufficy, thank you very much, and good luck on Sunday.

Mr. DUFFICY: Thank you, very much.

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