Trying to find staff who are upbeat, brand aware and eager to work in a fast food chain seems like it can be a challenge. From my experience, the chains don’t always employ the most enthusiastic staff but some are great and they will greet you at the counter full of the joys of spring. Others have probably turned up to their Sunday morning shift having spent all weekend partying, and have barely slept. The select few are just complete pranksters and recently Wendy’s, the fast food chain, has been at the forefront of some very bad PR.
A not so proud employee has been photographed helping himself to the Frosty Machine (a bit like the milkshake machine in Maccy D’s). But, unlike most restaurant workers who will help themselves to a sneaky plateful of spare food, this one decided to just open the tap straight into his mouth and guzzle down a serving of Frosty.
Gross. It’s bad enough knowing you’ve ordered a burger scraped from the bottom of the barrel, but to think you’re sharing your Frosty with the germs of the stranger that served it to you…no thanks.
The photo appeared online, taken by a fellow colleague, and of course swept across the Internet at record speed. This incident mirrors that of the Taco Bell ‘taco licker’ a few months back. The staff member was pictured licking a stack of Tacos, apparently for a competition within the company, but he didn’t win and he lost his job.
According to the latest reports, the Frosty Machine worker from Wendy’s has also been fired for his actions.
The bad press that has come off the back of these two images could be so hard to recover from. Through fear of discovering a rat in their KFC boneless banquet, a hair in their burger, or the thought of a stranger having wrapped their mouth around a Frosty Machine – customers are easily influenced and can be led away from a brand in a flash. Customers will instantly be lost the minute anything remotely off putting about a food establishment is raised in the press.
Firing the staff members will put customers’ minds at ease, but it still plants the seed of doubt in my mind that the chains aren’t employing or training the most reliable and sanitary staff… There’s nothing worse than bad PR for your brand, especially in cases like these – let’s hope Wendy’s and Taco Bell bounce back.