SENSATION TITLE: Employees takes Bath at Xenia Burger King.
CAUSE: A teenage employee (Burger King) celebrated his birthday by taking a bath in the utility sink at the Burger King in Xenia. In the video, the employee dumps water on himself using a bucket marked with the words, “sanitary solution.” At one point the employee who was filming the prank tells the manager that someone is bathing in the sink, and the manager simply shakes her head and continues counting money. Someone filmed it and posted the video to MySpace,
EFFECT: All of the employees involved were fired. The video was uploaded on myspace.com and fortunately, Greene County Health Commissioner Mark McDonnell was emailed the video that appeared on MySpace.com and is now using it as evidence. Though, the video was removed for the copy write issues but the damage was already done by a 4-minute video.
DAMAGE: Health department have sanitized the sink and have disposed of all other kitchen tools and utensils that were used during the incident. They have also taken appropriate corrective action on the employees that were involved in this video. Additionally, the remaining staff at this restaurant is being retrained in health and sanitation procedures.
This single incident won’t bring the Burger King brand to its knees, but one employee’s four-minute bath will likely cost the brand six figures in lost sales, wasted executive time, agency fees to fashion a PR response, communication to appease irate franchisees, energy to rehire staff and correct the problems in Xenia, and efforts to retrain employees throughout the system. Owning the Burger King brand doesn’t protect the company from the costs and damages inflicted by this incident; it obligates the company to take the necessary actions to protect its most valuable asset.