TAMPA, Fla. - December 10, 2012 - (BUSINESS WIRE) - During a surprise ending to Sunday night’s new A&E original real life series “Be the Boss” it was revealed two employees of The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc., rather than just one, were rewarded in grand style after a rigorous competition to create the perfect night out for their restaurant guests. The Melting Pot is the world’s premier fondue restaurant franchise with more than 140 locations across the world.
Viewers witnessed Jason Long, general manager of The Melting Pot in Warrington, Pa., and Terry Love, lead server from The Melting Pot, Louisville, Ky., as they were pitted against each other for the battle of a lifetime and chance to win what they thought was the opportunity for one of them to earn a promotion. After an intensive competition evaluating who best communicated The Melting Pot’s customized fondue dining experience and embodied the high standards of the world’s premier fondue restaurant, the workers and their families were shocked to learn they would both be rewarded.
As the show concluded, Long learned he had won one of the biggest prizes in all of television by being awarded his very own franchise, which can cost hundreds of thousands and even exceed one million dollars while Love learned he was being promoted to a new position as The Melting Pot’s director of team member communications.
The “Be the Boss” episode, which first aired Sunday, Dec. 9, followed Long and Love as they were first summoned by Bob Johnston, CEO of Front Burner Brands, the Tampa-based restaurant management company for The Melting Pot, regarding the chance to win a big promotion through a competition pitting them against each other.
“We participated in ‘Be the Boss’ as part of The Melting Pot’s comprehensive plan to introduce our guests to our completely revamped menu that will offer a new way to fondue beginning in February,” said Johnston, who along with others watched the show at a Tampa viewing party. “As viewers witnessed, we put Jason and Terry to the test to showcase how we create our signature perfect night out for guests. It became clear both were deserving of recognition and we’re pleased we were able to reward them both.”
Long, who watched the show with family, friends and co-workers at the Warrington, Pa., Melting Pot he manages, described receiving the keys to a Melting Pot, from Johnston, as surreal.
“At first I was disappointed that I didn’t win the promotion,” explained Long. “When Bob Johnston handed me the keys to the restaurant, I was confused and completely overwhelmed as I didn’t realize becoming a Melting Pot franchisee was even on the table during the competition! I was focused on winning the promotion, so was completely shocked by being given the opportunity to actually own a restaurant.”
Eight-year employee Love said he is thrilled by the opportunities before him in his new position as director of team member communications and hopes to inspire other Melting Pot team members through the experience of participating in the “Be the Boss” challenge. He watched the show with his family, friends and co-workers at the Louisville Melting Pot.
“I’ll have the opportunity to travel around North America to visit our more than 140 Melting Pot locations and energize other team members about the ‘Perfect Night Out’ experience we're committed to providing every guest,” explained Love. “I’ll also have the opportunity to speak to our franchise community at our Melting Pot reunion in Mexico and operators’ conference in Baltimore next year - all while being able to stay based in Louisville with my family.”
Both Long and Love are currently still working in their respective positions and weren’t able to share their celebratory news with anyone until last night. They’ll work out details of their respective new roles in 2013.
From the Emmy-award winning creators of “Undercover Boss,” “Be the Boss” faces off two lower-level employees from the ranks, giving them the chance at what they think is a big promotion. In each episode, the CEO summons two deserving candidates to the company headquarters and subsequently puts them through a series of challenges to test their mettle at being in a senior management role. Both employees battle to prove they should earn the promotion. The Melting Pot employees appeared in the second episode of A&E’s “Be the Boss”, which aired on Sunday, Dec. 9, at 11 p.m. ET/PT.
With more than 140 restaurants in North America, existing locations in 36 states, Canada and Mexico and more than 25 locations currently in development, The Melting Pot Restaurants, Inc. is the premier fondue restaurant franchise. Founded in 1975, The Melting Pot continues to be a memorable dining experience. Guests enjoy a choice of fondue cooking styles and a variety of unique entrées combined with dipping sauces. The menu also includes cheese fondues, salads, fine wines and chocolate fondue desserts. The Melting Pot is an affiliate of Front Burner Brands, a restaurant management company headquartered in Tampa, Fla.
For more information, visit http://www.meltingpot.com.
Editor’s note: Interviews are available with show participants, including Johnston, Long and Love, as well as Melting Pot President Mike Lester and Corporate Chef Shane Schaibly.
The Melting Pot Restaurants
National Director of Marketing and Communications