A Burger King franchise owner in the US has highlighted one of the reasons for his many long-time staff members – without even meaning to do so.
When Barnett Management, which runs 24 Burger King restaurants in Arizona, won the “Franchisee of the Year” award, owner Tom Barnett did something very few bosses have done before. Instead of keeping the shiny new Corvette car and Rolex watch, Barnett and his franchise co-owners decided to sell them and add to the profits so that they could give all the Burger King staff cash bonuses.
Over 100 Burger King employees got bonuses ranging from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars, based on how long they had been working there. Some employees got as much as US$5000 (around AUD$6400), with total given out to staff worth about US$120,000 (AUD$150,000).
Employee Eric Tejeda – who has worked his way up from cook to restaurant supervisor over a 15-year period – says he and the other staff had initially joked with their boss, and asked if they could take the car for a drive.
“I thought it was great,” he says in the video interview with 3TV News above, explaining that their goal had always been to become the number one Burger King in the US.
“I don’t see my job as come in and make hamburgers, I see my job as come in and work with the people.”
He said the bonus he received was a surprise and a great bonus, describing it as “extra money to make the family happy”.
Fellow long-time employee Charity Callahan says she was initially in shock when she received her generous bonus from the franchise owners.
“It was almost an entire month’s worth of pay for me,” she says. “They made us all feel appreciated.”
Barnett, along with the other franchise co-owners have said it was important to acknowledge the hard work of the staff members who had helped them receive this acknowledgment from Burger King.
“The award needed to go to the people who got us here. It was the right thing to do,” franchise co-owner Shelley Krispin told 3TV.
“We’re all better when we have people who work for us long term.”
With bosses like that, it’s no wonder some of their restaurants have staff that have been there for 15 years and counting.