RGM Erika Finds Room to Grow at DRG


As Women’s History Month continues, we want to highlight another woman leader in DRG and give insight into what it’s like holding a leadership position as a woman in the Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) industry. The majority of the crew-level population across the nation are women, yet that number drastically declines as you reach the executive level. QSR Magazine states that, according to a study done by The National Restaurant Association, only 38% of QSR executives identify as female.

Not only is it important to provide resources that facilitate professional growth for women, it is equally, if not more, important to tell their stories. Erika’s story embodies the experiences of countless women in the QSR industry. Maintaining conversation around women leaders amplifies representation and paves the way for new possibilities.

It all started with a chalupa. Erika Bernal was getting a bite to eat while visiting a family member at work when she was encouraged to join the team at DRG’s Taco Bell restaurant. What was Erika’s response? “Sure, why not?” 

Five years into the job, this Restaurant General Manager (RGM) has grown her family AND her career. “I love it,” she gushes.

Erika was a stayathome mom of two when she joined Taco Bell in 2019. In that role, “I was very, very busy 24 hours a day,” she shares. Since then, Erika has had three more children, which means flexibility is key to her success at work and at home. “Flexibility means a lot,” she says.

“I love the customers. I love what I do.” – Erika Bernal, RGM

As an RGM, “you have to be on top of everything,” Erika asserts. Fortunately, she has a great team to help make each day day a little smoother. “We’re all family,” she says. And like most families, theres a lot of growth.


Never Stop Learning

“We learn every day from everyone,” Erika shares.

In fact, Erika stresses the importance of turning to tenured Taco Bell team members, some who worked on the team for 15 to 20 years, to learn from their experiences. “We learn, we grow. It’s exciting,” she says.

In addition to learning from those around you, Erika’s advice to current and future team members: be positive. Fortunately, with fun co-workers and some pretty great job perks, that should be an easy request to fill. 

“They have a lot of opportunities,” Erika says. Like DRG’s tuition assistance program, which helps employees go back to school in pursuit of their education goals.

“We have a lot of fun.” – Erika Bernal, RGM

Erika loves being an RGM, but shed love to one day earn a spot at our Champions’ Club reward trip for top performing leaders. We can’t wait to see you there!