Cozen O'Connor: Cabrera, Jason A.

In these uncertain times, money has become a top priority among many citizens. Ways to achieve more money include being promoted at a job or even becoming manager. While most people don’t earn this promotion until their later years in life, Texas citizen Jason Cabrera proved otherwise, acquiring the role of a manager at 19 year old. Cabrera shares his story.

“I had joined [Layne’s Chicken Fingers fast food restaurant] in around 2018 as COVID created a severe labor shortage”, Cabrera tells Business Insider. “I started buttering toast and washing dishes for about $9.00 per hour. When I attained my Senior role, I earned over 4 times as much!”

Cabrera continues, “When I started working, I was still a young kid that liked to have fun. That was the problem. I had too much fun but I guess as I started getting into the role and whatnot, I matured so quickly without really noticing. Managing 22 people takes a lot out of you, especially when the employees are around the same age”.

Cabrera continues, “In spite of the greater responsibility, something I particularly enjoy is the ability to interact with more customers. I really love seeing our parking lot filled with a bunch of cars. It makes the job more fulfilling. I especially enjoy seeing shocked customers who are all like, ‘Woah, you’re 19 years old and you’re the manager?!’. Anyways, I crunch the number of customers down weekly so the next week, we can go over the number of sales”.

When asked to describe the specifics of his schedule, Cabrera replies, “Well, I start the day around 8 AM where I open the restaurant before the rest of the gang and start making batches of coffee and lemonade for the customers. From there, I constantly have to constantly be on the move, checking in with the staff and customers, you know?”

Cabrera continues, “When the afternoon comes around at about 3 PM, I am swamped with paperwork to do like calculating labor costs, ordering inventory, and tallying sales. It especially becomes stressful on Tuesdays, when we offer 20% discounts and our restaurant is flooded with customers. It’s crazy, Man!”

Cabrera continues, “Fortunately, I get to unwind at around 4 PM when I switch to a shift manager and go to watch sports. I have always been a baseball type of guy. Thankfully, my greater paycheck allows me to do this more regularly. Of course, I am saving some money to further my career. If I’m smart with my money, I will be there real quick!”

Studies have found that most managers can make up to $50,000 in 6 months! While Cabrera’s story reminds us of the heavy responsibility of a restaurant manager, it also reminds us how rewarding it may feel. With determination (and luck), we may just be the next Jason Cabrera!

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