Quashima Taylor, the general manager of the first Checkers restaurant in New Jersey, is the No. 1 general manager in the country out of more than 540 restaurants nationwide.
The company announced Taylor’s recognition on April 20.
Taylor started her career at Checkers at 283 Market St. in Paterson 26 years ago when she was just 16 years old.
“At that time I had a son, so I was looking for a job and I was going to school, and I needed to provide for my son so that’s what made me apply when I saw they were building one around the corner for my house,” Taylor said.
Now, her son is all grown up and has a family of his own, and Taylor has risen through the restaurant ranks. Not only is she number one general manager of Checkers stores nationally, but up until recently she also managed and mentored this year’s No. 2 until they became a general manager themselves.
Taylor always knew she wanted to work in the restaurant business. When she started at Checkers, she was taking culinary arts courses in high school. She’s stuck around for so long to provide for her family, she explained, which was easy given her consistent promotions over the years.
“I love working there. My favorite part is helping the community, serving the guests. And there’s a lot of regulars … yes, after 20-some odd years, there’s a lot of regulars,” Taylor said.
Taylor’s no stranger to the company’s Top 10 General Managers list, which as a group gets to go on a cruise. The list is based on metrics related to sales, operations, food costs, and more; she landed on the list at first in 2016, which allowed her to go on the first cruise of her life to Haiti and Jamaica.
She’s nabbed the top spot two years running so far in 2019 and 2020, and she’s gunning for a third.
Taylor’s quick to point out that she didn’t get there on her own.
“The award, I couldn’t have done it without my crew, my management team, my supervisors. That’s it. It’s a team, it’s a family. They help a lot,” she said.
Though no one from her first week on the job is still there, she’s worked with some crew members for 20-plus years.