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Undercover Boss Recap: Boston Market

February 01, 2013 07:21 PM by Megan Wilson

Guess what time it is?  It’s Undercover Boss time!  This episode we’re seeing what goes on behind the scenes at Boston Market.  Sara Bittorf, the Chief Brand Officer for Boston Market has gone undercover.  This episode is the first Undercover Boss EVER that an employee will actually lose their job BEFORE the reveal!  It’s THAT bad!  Keep reading for the details!

Sara Bittorf, CBO of Boston Market, is currently working on re-envisioning the brand’s products and marketing campaigns.  Boston Market went through a HUGE boom a few years ago, and faced “Too much too soon” growth.  The brand declared bankruptcy, closed a few locations, and is now starting from scratch. Sara admits that she’s scared of saying the wrong thing and being found out.  “If I do a bad job, this could cost me my employment.”

Sara’s undercover transformation is extreme.  They dye her hair and even put in extensions!  Sara is going to be known as Rachel throughout the project.  Her undercover story is that she is a diner waitress competing against others for a chance to open their own restaurant.  Here’s Sara before:

And after!

Her first job is an hourly shift supervisor.  The first employee she’ll be working with is Ronnie in Atlanta, Georgia.  Ronnie goes over the basics, including ‘putting the customer on a pedestal.’  Ronnie calls himself the Kim Kardashian of Boston Market.  He keeps referencing that the employees do things because “Corporate tells them to” and admits that he hates the adage, “The customer is always right.”  He also puts Sara in her place, making her do of the grunt work.  At one point, Ronnie says that old people and kids are the worst he’s ever seen.  Sara is immediately turned off by Ronnie’s attitude, and gets progressively offended by Ronnie’s remarks.  His guidance is laced with profanity and insults toward the customers. Numerous times Ronnie is heard saying that “He hates the customers.”

Sara makes a quick escape saying she needs to take a bathroom break, but goes outside to clear her head.  She decides to blow her cover and introduce her true self to Ronnie.  You should’ve seen his face. Sara says she’s angry and heartbroken, and Ronnie is sent home for the day.

Sara also reveals herself to the store’s GM.  Sara pulls him aside and dishes the truth about Ronnie.  She decides with the GM of the store that Ronnie’s employment needs to be terminated immediately.

With her first difficult day finished, Ronnie admits that while she knew she’d find things that needed to be fixed, she never imagined that she’d run into an employee like Ronnie.

Her second day, she shows up in Tampa to work alongside Sash, the assistant general manager.  She’s going to be learning how to remove the chickens from the rotisserie, and how to carve them.  Sara admits that she’s nervous, and runs into an issue immediately.  She’s left-handed, and removing the chickens from the rotisserie proves to be a right handed job.  Not only is she having trouble removing them, but cutting them also turns out to be difficult for Sara.  When the duo take a breather, Sash admits that they never get breaks.

Sara and Sash sit and talk about what it’s like working without breaks, and Sash tells Sara she wishes there was a way to make sure her employees got regular breaks.  Unknown to Sash, Boston Market already has a software installed on their computers to insure that the employees get breaks-it’s just never used!  Sash also has a second job, and is trying to become a nurse!   She admits that getting a break is next to impossible for her.

The third day Sara goes to Ft. Lauderdale and works with A.J. in the drive-through.  The first thing he shows her is the timer-they’ve got 60 seconds to get the food delivered to the cars.  The timer begins counting and beeps when a car pulls up.  A.J. throws Sara in the mix right away, and Sara is automatically stressed out.  A.J. admits that in the beginning Sara seems to have difficulty with the drive-through, as customers are lining up around the store.  Sara confessed that at times she wished, “The beep would just stop beeping!”

A.J. says that he tries hard because he wants to be the best.  After some legal trouble, A.J. admits that Boston Market gave him a second chance, and he’s forever grateful.

The last day of the undercover adventure Sara goes to Fayetteville, North Carolina to work as an assistant general manager with April in one of the top 30 restaurants.  April focuses on the corporate set up of the store, as well as re-stocking the items and cleaning the premises.  April admits that she’s looking to get a job with corporate, but also says she needs to finish college.  She goes to school full time, works full time, and is a single mom.  Sara coaxes out April’s true feelings-there’s no way for April to move up the ladder any further unless she quits and comes back in a corporate manner after graduating.  But that didn’t get her down!

Now that Sara has spent time behind the scenes, it’s time to reveal the truth to the employees she worked with.  Each employee said that it was nice working with “Rachel”.  Each employee seems stunned at the revelation that they’re on Undercover Boss.  First up is Sash.  Sara says that Sash really demonstrated a love for her employees, and wants Sash to become the expert on the software system for Boston Market and have her travel to each store and educate the other locations on the break policies.  Sara also tells Sash that she is giving her $20,000 so she can quit her other job.

Next up is A.J.  Sara says she was honored to work with A.J, and was impressed with his work ethic.  A.J. says she’s going to work to promote A.J. to shift supervisor.  Not only is she going to get him a promotion, but she’s giving him $20,000 to help him achieve his dreams.

April sits down and Sara brags on her warm and friendly service, and how April really seems to enjoy her job.  Sara wasn’t happy to hear that April felt she needed to leave in order to move up the ladder.  Sara offers April a position as a general manager in Florida, and will pay for the relocation.  Sara also gives April $10,000 for her son’s education, $20,000 to help pay off her student loans, and $5,000 for a vacation.

Sara says the experience will help her do her job better, and serve customers better.

A.J. is loving his promotion, but most of all he was thrilled to be able to pay cash for his first car.  April is looking forward to a new life in Miami Beach, and Ronnie is considering working at a beauty shop.  Sash has quit her second job in order to focus on Boston Market and a nursing degree.

What did you think of Ronnie?  What did you think of this episode of Undercover Boss?  Let us know in the comments!

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Photo Credit: CBS

Topics: CBS Reality TV Shows, Undercover Boss |

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9 Comments »

9 Responses to “Undercover Boss Recap: Boston Market”

  1. Marc Rogers Says:
    February 1st, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    I think she is on shaky ground with terminating Ronnie. His attitude towrds the customers was awful but given how he only revealed them in a deceptive sutuation that bordered on entrapment I think he would have plenty of grounds to sue for unfair termination.

    Especially as its clear he didnt let his negative feelings impact his work, since his manager was obviously surprised by the accustations.

    I think the smart move would have been to find out WHY ronnie was so bitter and give him a chance to redeem himself then terminate him if he failed.

    As it is, I think Boston Market is probably looking at a potentially damaging lawsuit from a bitter ex employee.

    IMHO this is one of the reasons you have to be clinical and as emitionally detached as possible when investigtaing like this.

  2. Steve W. Says:
    February 2nd, 2013 at 12:03 am

    I just watched that episode, and I was surprised to learn that Boston Market was based in Denver, not Boston! There was a BM in my town (Stoneham, MA) until a year ago and I loved their food.

    We need a lot more workers like Sash, Sara and A. J. and a lot less people like Ronnie! What a selfish, arrogant jerk! I’m glad he got fired.

  3. Meade Says:
    February 2nd, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    If I were Ronnie, I would definitely sue the bits off of Boston Market! What they did was unfair and entrapment. I disagree with his attitude, but they should have at least given him a fair warning and HELP HIM IMPROVE. But no, they fired him on national TV- which may put his future life ruined, with chances of future employment anywhere in question. The irony of it all, is they were just as deceptive as Ronnie was. Putting out a false front like that. Its pure deception.

  4. bob Says:
    February 2nd, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    Marc, entrapment applies to cops and the law, not at-will employment. I suggest you read up a bit more before commenting.

  5. Ralph Says:
    February 4th, 2013 at 4:09 am

    Employee Ronnie’s behavior was unbelieveably inexcusable. What is even more reprehensible is that two people here have made excuses for his behavior and have suggested that he sue Boston Market. This country is fast becoming a place that I do not recognize. How long can it be before the complete collapse!!!

  6. dick dribble Says:
    February 6th, 2013 at 8:13 am

    This lady was a mean and cruel bitch…. Emotional, and she looks like shit… The higher the IQ the uglier the bitches gets.. I think this lady should be ashamed of herself for firing someone for telling them the truth… Like when a psychologist asks have you ever thought about killing anyone? TELL THEM NO NO MATTER WHAT.. At work just lie so cunts like this can’t fuck with you.. This is why workers go postal.

  7. Lisa Says:
    February 20th, 2013 at 7:38 am

    If he felt that way about the customers there is no telling what he may have been doing to their food behind closed doors. Those kind of comments should have been kept to himself or @ least at the kitchen table at home. Be gone Ronnie. He will probably get a reality show out of this. Don’t they always?

  8. lilkunta Says:
    January 11th, 2014 at 10:57 am

    When all these CEOS give their employees 10k and 20k and 25k, do they pay the taxes on these amounts? DO they offer financial guidance? For example, AJ is going to buy a brand new car. DId he put the full $20k down as a down payment? Will he be able t make monthly payments with his BostomMarket pay ? It would have been smarter to buy a used car outright for $4000.

    April is moving to FL to be a General Manager and BM is paying her relocation expenses, which is great. But will her college credits transfer? Who will care for her child while she is at work FT and school FT as she has no family, friends, or support system in FL ?

    I wish CBS would do an update on Bostom Market.
    Meanwhile, I need to go and eat there bc the food looked delicious!

  9. lilkunta Says:
    January 11th, 2014 at 10:58 am

    update, April’s son is 18 and in college so he doenst need daycare. And Sara gave her $20k for her student loans!

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