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Eric Carillo

Eric Carillo
"Panda has taught me how to effectively communicate and be a team player. "
Eric Carillo

Why Panda?

I was introduced to the company by my mom, a Panda Express general manager for the past six years. She is very passionate about Panda and would frequently tell me how they care for their associates and want to see them grow with the company.

A day in the life of a cook

I begin each shift by walking through the steam table to see how the food looks in terms of quality and quantity. I also make sure the walk-in refrigerator is organized without any cross-contamination. Finally, I make sure the kitchen’s walls and floors are clean, and that we’re well stocked for my shift.

During lunch and dinner rushes, I am in "the zone." There’s a great satisfaction in being able to prepare food fast and efficiently. When it’s slower at the restaurant, I assist with prep as necessary, chopping vegetables and marinating meats. I also spend time getting to know associates, our team is very close and we’re friends at work and outside of Panda.

What made you decide to stay and continue to grow at Panda?

One of the main things that stood out to me is how much Panda invested in its people. I started off as a cashier and began cross-training to learn the back of the house soon after. Two years later, I became a cook and a year after that I came to the Support Center as an intern in the Human Resources Department.

How has Panda impacted your life?

Panda has taught me how to effectively communicate and be a team player.

What advice do you have for someone interested in Panda? 

Many people think of Panda as another fast food restaurant, but that’s just not accurate. Think of Panda as a career. There are opportunities to grow beyond being a cook or server, and Panda aims to promote internally anyone who shows the ability.

What’s your favorite menu item?

Orange Chicken

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