KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Michael Hampton and Walter Mansfield have dedicated 15 years of service to the PB&J restaurant group. And in return, they each received a Harley Davidson motorcycle.
“Fifteen years is a long time, and instead of a check or a watch or something, this Harley is like the coolest thing you can get,” said Paul Khoury, CEO of PB&J Restaurant Group.
Mansfield, a waiter at Yayas Euro Bistro, is one of 12 employees who were given a motorbike.
“If I had said I was going to be there 15 years later, I would have thought it wouldn’t happen,” said Mansfield.
Hampton, bartender and foodservice manager at Burnt Ends BBQ, said much the same thing.
“For a long time it was like, ‘Oh, maybe I’ll get to this 15, maybe I’ll get to this 15,’ and one day it was 10 and I thought, ‘ OK, we make it happen, ”said Hampton.
Khoury said his gratitude for the loyalty of his employees prompted him to reward them with the motorcycles.
“It’s like a big family, you know PB&J has always been, ‘If you take care of PB&J, PB&J will take care of you and your family,’” Khoury said.
While many employers have struggled to keep their doors open – and employees on the payroll – amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Hampton said it was an easy decision to stay with PB&J.
“I wanted to help as much as I could, so if that meant going on and putting on masks and gloves and getting food out in people’s cars, that was just the way we were to do it for a while,” he said. Hampton said.
“During the pandemic it was difficult,” he said. “We were helping with the take out part because they were always doing the take out food. So it was interesting to go there, pack the take out food with a mask on all these other things.”
Today, 15 years later, it’s like riding a motorcycle – no road is too long if there is good company along the way.
“I feel blessed to be able to be a part of it,” said Hampton. “To be a part of what they do, and that I was able to get it when I put it in and stuck with it for as long as I have it.”
Likewise, Mansfield said that the fact that he stayed at PB&J for 15 years “speaks volumes about the nature of the business.”