While we’ve seen drive-through interactions go viral before — as with the Starbucks barista who reluctantly revealed to a customer that there was an issue with her makeup application — @leikerornot‘s video is inspiring an important conversation about how we treat those in the food industry.
The video seems to begin mid-action, with @leikerornot asking the Panera Bread employee, “So you are gonna refuse to take my order because my child was screaming?”
The employee calmly replies, “Yes, I have the right to do that” — then explains to the mom that she’s more than welcome to come inside to place her order, or remain in her car and order online.
Right on cue, @leikerornot‘s young daughter screams in the background. The mom then reveals to the Panera Bread employee that she has been filming their interaction and plans to email the footage “to corporate.”
“That’s just, like, completely rude,” she says. “I cannot come inside because my daughter does not have shoes on. Do you understand that?”
The employee calmly reiterates that she can order online — to which the mom protests, saying she doesn’t have the “extra 20 minutes” it would take to order online. “That’s not convenient to me,” she says. “It’s your job to take orders and stuff, and this is ridiculous. So I’d like you to take my order, please.”
After a long, thoughtful silence, the Panera Bread employee calmly replies, “OK, I will be happy to take your order, as long as your daughter does not scream. All right?”
“I think that’s a pretty good decision on your part,” @leikerornot replies.
To this, the employee firmly responds, “OK, I don’t need this attitude.”
“Team Panera guy!”
Nearly 100,000 TikTokers weighed in on @leikerornot‘s video in the comment section, most of which expressed their support of the Panera Bread employee.
“I’m a mom and I’m team Panera guy! He handled this well and he didn’t deserve her condescending tone!” one user wrote.
“It’s hard enough to communicate through those speakers without a kid screaming. She would’ve been just as mad if her order was wrong. Team Panera guy!” commented another user.
“Team panera, I felt like he handled the situation well and kinda feel sorry for him getting threatened taking the video to corporate,” wrote one user.
“Mom here. 1000% with Panera guy. Give him a raise and promotion please for putting up with this,” another comment read.
“I’m with Panera!! Don’t want to waste 20 minutes to place online order but wants to waste time arguing 🤦🏻♀️🤦🏻♀️,” mused another user.
“I’m with Panera, it’s hard to take your order if your child is screaming, pull around order online and they will bring it out…easy!” one user wrote.
“I’m with Panera. 😭 If my son can’t be quiet for the few seconds it takes me to order, I drive away and we eat at home,” one parent commented.
“As a Panera employee, when a child screams into the intercom, it legit hurts our ears! The mic is sooo loud and can be hard to understand,” a fellow Panera Bread employee shared.
In a follow-up video, @leikerornot informed TikTokers that she would soon be meeting with the Panera Bread area manager to discuss her drive-through experience. “Let’s just say that he doesn’t agree with the majority of [these] comments,” she said. The comments for this video have been turned off.
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