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RGM Shawn Belknap on Integrity


We caught up with Shawn Belknap, a Restaurant General Manager in our Wisconsin market, and asked a simple question: “Why do you think your team members like coming to work each day?”

His answer was simple, too, “Because I’m myself,” he says. “The person I am in my restaurant is the person I am at home.”

It’s that kind of integrity that keeps Shawn’s restaurant team cohesive and high-performing. “We don’t cut corners,” Shawn says, referring to how he runs his location. “We do things right the first time.”

Shawn got his start with Taco Bell in 2011 as a part-time dishwasher. He worked his way up the career ladder and when Border Foods acquired his then corporate market in 2015, he was promoted to Assistant General Manager. By 2017, Shawn was a Restaurant General Manager. Today, he’s that and so much more. In addition to his daily restaurant duties, Shawn teaches SPARK courses, training other managers who want to take their careers to the next level. Plus, he’s starting the process of turning his restaurant location into a certified training location. 

“Here, you’re not just a number,” he says. “I’ve shaken the leadership teams’ hands. The director of operations knows me on a first-name basis. Those things matter.” 


When it comes to explaining his teams’ success, he credits good hiring and, of course, integrity. “I’m a big believer in surrounding yourself with people who are smarter than you,” he says. “Someone took a chance on me, and it changed my life. I hope to do the same for the team members I get to hire.”

Shawn says Border’s benefits and pay far exceed any other company he’s known. “I’ve made more money with Border Foods than another company I’ve ever worked with,” he says. “Plus, I’ve grown more than I could have imagined, both professionally and personally. I’m very ambitious and I don’t think there’s anything I can’t do, if I put my mind to it.”

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