This is Rudy Ramirez, age 22, one of DRG’s youngest Taco Bell GM at the moment. As head of the Johnson Drive location in Kansas City, he shows a sense of pride in this achievement.
“This role is really meaningful to me because I feel like I’m a leader at heart,” he says.“It kind of gives me an opportunity to lead something while I’m developing my[own]leadership skills.”
Rudy joined Taco Bell in 2018 as team member after working for McDonald’s in high school. He’s always enjoyed the fast food environment for its diversity in employees and customers. Within just two months of joining Taco Bell, he became a Shift Lead. His bump up the career ladder was all based on an intense observation of others in the role. You can tell he’s driven to succeed.
Currently finishing up his third year of college, Rudy is a prime example of a motivated student and employee who’s benefitted from DRG’s tuition assistance program. He estimates that he’s received a generous $15,000 to $20,000 in tuition reimbursement for educational expenses since enrolling as a freshman. He says this is one way the company shows up for its hardworking employees.
“They really notice your progress,” he says.“DRG makes sure that they show you they’re appreciative of all the hard work you’re doing.”
In turn, Rudy plans to put his college degree to good use in the workplace, continuing to improve metrics at the Johnson Drive Taco Bell. He’s already worked to make his location’s speed of service one of the fastest in the company.
“That was a very, very long process,” he admits, saying the location had only been open two months when he took over.“I had to train our people because the majority of people that were here were relatively new.”
He says he’s learned a lot through the process. He’s had to slow down to be a more patient, supportive leader. Some lessons had to be learned through trial and error. He looks at this as an opportunity to build his own family here.
”My goal right now is that I’m trying to get my team as high as they can be,” he shares.“I feel like I have a lot of people on my team that can even be in my shoes… I want to be able to have them reach their goals.”