Ep. 87 - Upward Projects COO, Alex Taylor

Ep. 87 - Upward Projects COO, Alex Taylor

Our guest today is Alex Taylor the Chief Operating Officer of Upward Projects, a Phoenix-based hospitality group with a cult-like following. 

Alex was previously serving as the Senior Vice President for the Kimpton Hotel and Restaurant Group, overseeing the $400M restaurant and bar division with 80 unique concepts in 22 states and three countries.

Alex graduated from Duke University and also earned an M.B.A from the University of Texas at Austin, started his career as a Phoenix-based regional manager for Starbucks, before relocating to Las Vegas to serve as the Director of Food & Beverage for the Mandalay Bay Resort. Next, Alex was named the Executive Director of Food & Beverage for Wynn Resorts’ Encore, before leaving to launch his own two-unit restaurant concept in Las Vegas and Austin. All of which gave Alex invaluable experience in the power, and perils, of company culture. 

In This Conversation We Discuss:

  • Care about people, establish the culture, and the profit will come.
  • Why scaling culture is difficult.
  • The sacraments to what makes your culture truly special – where to invest, what traditions to invest in, and what training is needed.
  • Leaning into values to help with culture and getting people to be authentic.
  • Living the core values by always be talking about them, referring to them, aligning criticism and praise to them.

Interesting Highlights:

  • Starbucks early to the game on differentiation and driving culture. 


Connect with Alex Taylor: LinkedIn

Check out Upward Projects: https://upwardprojects.com/

Connect with Cameron: Website | LinkedIn

Get Cameron’s latest book “Meetings Suck: Turning One of The Most Loathed Elements of Business into One of the Most Valuable.

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