Culture & Talent

Building a Workplace of Choice


Yum! Brands’ culture of recognition, as well as opportunities to grow and to make a meaningful difference, are the primary reasons many employees at all levels of the company say that they choose to stay at Yum!, KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell.

Likewise, talent attraction, engagement and retention are strategic to our business success and among our most material corporate social responsibility issues.

We have a values-driven culture. In the way we recognize wins and believe in all people, we’ve made sure Yum! remains a company that feels like a community. Our culture emphasizes fun, recognition for wins big and small, and a focus on breakthrough results. We take a tremendous amount of pride in every individual, which we demonstrate by encouraging all employees to master their skill sets and constantly expand their expertise. This mindset makes every day dynamic, which leads to long and rewarding careers.


We have a values-driven culture. Our values challenge and inspire us to elevate our brands, culture, performance and impact on customers and the communities that we serve. These values are:

  • Champion the customer experience
  • Serve up trust in every bite
  • Adopt and share the best ideas
  • Deliver results, overnight and over time
  • Be focused and stay hungry
  • Recognize wins, big and small
  • Lead with smart, heart and courage
  • Believe in all people
  • Make the world better

We firmly believe that our culture gives us a competitive advantage and are committed to maintaining it going forward. To help, Yum! CEO Greg Creed created and teaches a leadership development course for corporate employees and franchisees worldwide called Leading Culture to Fuel Results. Creed created the course to inspire employees and franchisees to become leaders who lead and prioritize our values-driven culture. The course centers around the idea that, by using culture as a foundation for establishing strategy and structure, we can create an atmosphere for successful business results. Since the program launched in 2016, more than 95 percent of senior corporate leaders have taken part. Over the past two years, more than 15 courses have been conducted with employees and franchisees across more than 10 countries. In 2017 alone, courses were held in Hong Kong, India, Poland, the United Arab Emirates and the U.S. We plan to take Leading Culture to Fuel Results deeper into our organization over the coming years, including training more corporate employees and franchisees at various levels around the world.

At Pizza Hut, employees are encouraged to live “Life Unboxed,” fostering a culture where people can be their best, make friends and have fun. As part of this movement, the brand announced Life Unboxed EDU, an educational partnership that helps team members earn college degrees. Pizza Hut also updated its staff uniforms and launched the Heartstyles training program for its leaders. It continues to award the Lou Folino Life Unboxed Award annually to a RGM who champions culture-driving initiatives in the restaurant and in the communities they serve. The campaign was recently awarded the Gold Award for Brandon Hall Group’s Excellence in Talent Management Awards and the WorkHappier Trailblazer Award from BI Worldwide.

Taco Bell’s leadership programs for restaurant general managers, shift leads and area coaches — called theMark, theSpark and theQuest, respectively — are offered to all its restaurants in the U.S. These unique programs help individuals discover their leadership vision and how to lead at every level. More than 3,000 RGMs have flown to Taco Bell headquarters to attend theMark, where they also participate in community service projects and share ideas about how to create the best restaurant culture.

“Our people-first culture and investment in our employees is a top priority for us as we build the world’s most loved, trusted and fastest growing restaurant brands.”

TRACY SKEANS – Yum! Chief Transformation & People Officer

Since 2013, Taco Bell has consistently measured culture and engagement in restaurants with The Pulse. Nearly 35,000 team members take The Pulse survey three times a year, which helps restaurant leaders understand how they’re doing and provides tools to measure progress against goals.

A strong culture keeps high-performing employees at Yum! and our restaurants. Our retention rates are equal to or higher than those of our industry peers and results on our employee engagement survey show high levels of engagement among corporate employees. Sustained high scores on this survey were especially encouraging in 2017, given Yum!’s 2016 spinoff of the China business and announcement of our multi-year transformation plan to become a more focused, franchised and efficient company to drive future growth. This continued engagement during a time of great change is a testament to the power of our brands, strong culture and employees’ dedication to our mission.


KFC believes that for leaders to be successful, they must be “smart with heart,” meaning that when they are themselves with their teams, they build a more authentic, open and honest culture that delivers greater results. Leading With Heart was designed to enable leaders from CEO to RGM to gain insights into their own behavior and identify why they do the things they do through the use of the Heartstyles Indicator, a character development tool. The transformational, two-day workshop provides participants with the opportunity to gain insight about their own behaviors, develop strength of character through self-awareness activities and become more effective in both their personal and professional lives. The program is currently available in more than 25 countries and by the end of 2018 will be translated into 24 languages.

LEADING WITH HEART has the potential to reach 20,000 KFC RGMs who influence 800,000 team members who, in turn, impact 2 BILLION customers every year.