I’m a McDonald’s Restaurant Owner. Here’s How My Team is Navigating This Unprecedented Crisis - Black Enterprise

I’m a McDonald’s Restaurant Owner. Here’s How My Team is Navigating This Unprecedented Crisis

McDonald's
Nicole Enearu, McDonald's franchise owner

I have been part of the McDonald’s community for over 30 years, beginning when my mom became an operator in the 1980s. Today, my sister and I operate 18 restaurants across Los Angeles and are proud to be a familiar and reliable presence in our hometown. Over the decades, my family, restaurant teams, and our communities have experienced a lot together, but COVID-19 is truly unprecedented. We are all navigating this together, and I have never been more proud, grateful, and inspired by the character and generosity of spirit shown by my crew members.

Nothing matters more than making sure our crew is safe, informed, and supported as we continue to serve meals to the customers and community who rely on us. As we look to government leaders and medical experts for continued guidance on the most effective safety measures, our restaurant managers and I are making changes as rapidly as possible. To date, we have implemented:

  • Wellness checks at the start of each shift
  • Gloves and masks provided for all employees
  • Plexiglass barriers in the restaurants and Drive-Thrus
  • Guides on the floor to ensure proper social distancing

Throughout these uncertain times, as an owner and community leader, I am committed to being a resource for my crew, alongside our team of managers. No one has all the answers when it comes to dealing with a public health situation that is rapidly evolving, but we will continue to communicate and provide access to information and resources to help everyone make the best choices for themselves and their families. If any of our crew members are not comfortable coming to work, they know that their job will be here for them when they are ready to return.

For those who choose to continue to work, we are recognizing their dedication by providing additional pay, a free meal during their shift, as well as an extra free meal coupon for each shift they work to share with their families. In the event that any of our crew is exposed to or comes down with COVID-19, they are eligible for two weeks of paid sick leave to rest and recover before returning to work. At a time when unemployment rates are skyrocketing, I am proud that we continue to provide our crew members a steady job and a reliable income.

The men and women I work with inspire me every day. Seeing their commitment to supporting their families, colleagues, and local communities motivates me. Recently, on behalf of our McDonald’s team, my sister and I delivered McDonald’s to several local hospitals as a small token of appreciation for our first responders and healthcare workers. Together with our crew, we are making sure that essential workers know they have a place to go for a sense of normalcy and a bite to eat served by a familiar face. All our restaurants are honored to provide for first responders and want them to know they can get a free Egg McMuffin® and coffee at our local restaurants or Drive-Thrus. And, if their shifts mean they’re going to miss breakfast, they’re welcome to pick up a free lunch or dinner later in the day. We’re here to serve them, while they serve our communities and save lives.

My leadership philosophy in one word has always been collaboration. This has never felt more true. Our teams and our communities are at our best when we listen to each other, problem-solve together, and support one another, particularly in the face of this historic crisis. We truly are all in this together, and I have never been more proud to serve our communities.

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