Ruby Tuesday Is Under Fire For Bad Business Practices

How can it be that the casual-dining chain named after the popular Rolling Stones song "Ruby Tuesday" doesn't know how to say goodbye?

You would have to be familiar with the chorus of the Stones' 1967 hit single to appreciate the irony: "Goodbye Ruby Tuesday / Who could hang a name on you?" Well, former employees of the disappearing restaurant chain certainly could hang a name on Ruby Tuesday. Using relationship slang that Mick Jagger and Keith Richards had never heard of in the '60s, that name would be "ghost."

Cooks, servers, and the rest of the employees at certain Ruby Tuesday locations are saying tearful goodbyes to their paychecks after showing up for work only to find their employer had ghosted them. A chef at a Ruby Tuesday in Fort Wayne, Indiana, came to work last week to find moving trucks pulled up to the restaurant (via Business Insider). Just this week, employees at the Port Charlotte, Florida Ruby Tuesday didn't see the writing on the wall until they saw a sign posted outside the restaurant: "This Ruby Tuesday location is closed. We are sorry for any inconvenience that this may have caused you" (via the Port Charlotte Sun).

Laying off employees with no notice is standard practice at Ruby Tuesday

Ruby Tuesday has been closing locations at a rapid pace ever since COVID-19 put a serious dent in the restaurant industry. But the chain has been shedding stores ever since NRD Capital bought it in 2017 (via Restaurant Business). Employees at the Greece, New York Ruby Tuesday that closed in 2019 at least got the courtesy of a same-day email saying they were laid off. They also got about $100 in severance pay. Still, single parents and longtime employees who had trouble holding back their tears suddenly had no income, according to Rochester First.

Certain Ruby Tuesday locations aren't just unprofitable. They can't even pay their bills, NRD Capital CEO Aziz Hashim told Restaurant Business back in May. At the time, Hashim predicted a "blood bath" in the third quarter of 2020, which would be right now. Business Insider estimates the chain has closed more than 150 of the 450 locations that were still around at the beginning of 2020. Not telling the employees in advance is standard. Restaurant managers aren't told until the night before and are given direct instructions to tell none of the employees until the next day, Business Insider reported.

All of this, sadly, is far removed from the Ruby Tuesday corporate mission of quality, passion, and pride, as found on the company website, which states, "Pride makes us a family. This is our home." Ruby Tuesday is locking its family out of the house.