The pandemic and its subsequent challenges have left most of us either stressed or demotivated. But if you thought you were alone, a message by Texas-based fast food chain Chicken Express will prove otherwise. The message typed and printed out on a modest paper was stuck on one of the poles adjoining the restaurant. The message read, "We are short-staffed. Please be patient with the staff that did show up. No one wants to work anymore." Took the words right out of our mouth, didn't they?
An image of the message was shared on Reddit with the caption, "Chicken Express somewhere in Texas."
The brutally honest message gave rise to conversations about the challenges faced by the service industry in light of the pandemic. Replying to the post, one user noted, "I have noticed A LOT of hiring signs pop up everywhere lately."
Many shared their own experiences about working in the service industry during these turbulent times. "The small restaurant I work at only has two servers on staff. We work all day a couple of times a week and are often by ourselves on a shift and it gets busy there. We are already closed Sunday but have been closing on Tuesdays as well lately just so our servers can get a break. It can be very stressful, and I always appreciate when customers are patient and understanding," a comment read.
While many users said restaurants were not paying their staff enough, some owners and managers put forth their end of the story.
A user who goes by the name CaptainBuzzi said, "I'm a manager in a hotel and I wish I had any pull with what we're allowed to pay. The owners are so super confused why people aren't coming to interviews and just flat out not applying. If your prospective employee is currently making more money sitting on their ass at home, why would they take a pay cut to come to deal with what we're asking of them?!"
There were some who said the only way to pay employees was perhaps for food prices to go up. "Otherwise, there is no incentive for small business owners to open locations because they will not see a return for decades," another user said.