Crain's National Newsletter: How an Appearance on CBS' 'Undercover Boss' Inspired Checkers & Rally's to Improve its System
Crain's National Newsletter: How an Appearance on CBS' 'Undercover Boss' Inspired Checkers & Rally's to Improve its System

The brand is giving back to its employees.

Prior to joining Checkers & Rally's, CEO Rick Silva spent 13 years with Burger King learning the ropes of the QSR industry while recognizing that flaws in the employee training program can impact growth. 

"I knew there were things that we’d have to do better but it wasn't until I really got into it and the company got into growth mode that I realized certain things were broken," said Silva in an interview with Crain's Tampa. "For example, how we train. There was a lot of opportunity for improvement there."

It was a feature on "Undercover Boss" that really exposed those flaws in the system and jolted Silva's confidence as he was thrust into the limelight.

"When CBS came to us and wanted to put me on the show, at first I said no," Silva said to reporter Brian Hartz. "And then when I realized the idea was to help and reward employees – because that's what the show's about, finding great employees and rewarding them – I said to myself, 'You know, it's worthwhile.'"

Although he agreed, Silva's underlying concerns for the impact this exposure might have on his career were weighing on him. Eventually, the show aired, and although uncomfortable about certain aspects, he knew he ultimately did the right thing.

"Out of very difficult or stressful moments – things we wouldn't normally put ourselves through – comes opportunity," he said. "Because of doing that show, I was able to see the chance we had to make things better for our employees, to help our employees, train them better, give them better opportunities."

Through this process, Checkers & Rally's was able to recognize outstanding employees and improve and refine their training process - a task that continues today.

"And so, as a result of the show, and what I saw and I learned on it, every employee has a new motivation to earn a bonus," according to Silva. "There were very difficult moments, certainly, but the rewards were fantastic, and I would never have gotten there had I not taken that risk."

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