Though he later discovered the executive wasn't in Japan, Monaghan wrote, he believed Hughes "may have made an honest mistake." Perhaps, but Monaghan had made a foolish mistake. Hypnotized by Hughes' line, he hired an executive vice-president without checking his references.
"The first thing I did, I put him in the commissary because the commissary was something I'd never made any money at," Monaghan wrote. "The main purpose of the commissary was to make the stores more successful. So I put him back there, and, boy, he shaped up that commissary! He measured every function. He had every cost down. I'd never seen anything like it before. And we started making money in the commissary." Hughes then unraveled Domino's tangled administration and did so "in an admirable fashion."
"But he wanted more," Monaghan remembered in our interview, "and so he talked me into [giving him] a higher position: he wanted to be president. He said he could do more if he had the title.
"He wanted to clean up this place. He always talked about how bad it was, and how much brilliance and excellence he brings to everything he does. He wanted me to step away from things because he couldn't do his job of bringing the company excellence if I'm there. So I said 'OK, make him president.'