Subway

Mohammad Ahmed, owner, 335C Main Street, 201-342-5665, 7:30AM-10:30PM, Monday-Friday; 8AM-10PM, Saturday; 9AM-8PM, Sunday.

“I came to this country 17 years ago with a masters degree in management. I worked for Aramark for 10 years, first managing concessions at the Meadowlands Racetrack, then at its Terrace Restaurant. I bought this Subway restaurant in 2011. The city of Hackensack is nice and very friendly; even my landlord is great. I’m very excited and optimistic about the changes that are coming to the downtown because of the Main Street Business Alliance.

“I’m always thinking about myself as the customer, so I know what customers are looking for and I insist on good service. I greet every single customer who comes in and try to help them in any way I can. That’s why I got the Subway award for Single Unit Owner of the Year for North America a few years ago—because customer service is everything to me. Our business is not just for today, it’s for the long term. I have two great employees and they’re the same way—always smiling, always friendly.

“My day starts at 7AM, when we get here and start baking fresh bread and cookies. A lot of people don’t know we serve breakfast—and you can get breakfast all day long. We have so many good deals for the customers; we offer a discount for everyone, like our VIP passes. We have great coffee and we give away free coffee or small drink with breakfast. We give 15% off to any student, and about half of our customers are students. If you buy a sub Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, you get another sub free with the purchase of a drink. We’ll work with any school or library to provide book certificates for kids. When they read a book and bring in the signed certificate, they get a free kids’ meal. We also do catering—a lot of 3’ and 6’ giant subs, sandwich platters for 5-9 people, and box lunches. I invite everyone to come in and sample our store.”