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Undercover Boss

Undercover Boss

Photo Credit:  Jeffrey R Staab/CBS
  • Premiered: 
    February 7, 2010
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: CBS
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Reality
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter: Workplace
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Plot Synopsis

High-level executives leave the comfort of their corner offices and slip anonymously into the rank and file, working alongside their employees on an undercover mission to examine the inner workings of their companies. Each week a different executive will see the effects their decisions have on others, where the problems lie within their organization and get an up-close look at both the good and the bad while discovering the unsung heroes who really make their company run. The following execs went undercover in Season 1: Larry O'Donnell (President & C.O.O., Waste Management); Joseph M. DePinto (President & C.E.O., 7-Eleven); Coby G. Brooks (President & C.E.O., Hooters); Dave Rife (Owner/Executive Board Member, White Castle); and William C. Carstanjen (C.O.O., Churchill Downs).

Season 4, which opened on Friday, November 2, 2012, featured: Mitchell B. Modell, CEO of Modell's Sporting Goods; Ron Lynch, President of Tilted Kilt; Kat Cole, President of Cinnabon, Inc.; and many more.

The fifth season, which debuted on Friday, September 27, 2013 at 8pm ET/PT on CBS, followed these executives: Randy Dewitt, co-founder and CEO of Twin Peaks, a sports bar and grill chain; Steven Newman, the CEO of Loehmann's; Jane Grote Abell, Chairman of Donatos Pizza; and many more business leaders.

UNDERCOVER BOSS returned for its sixth season on Sunday, December 14, 2014 at 8pm ET/PT on CBS. In the season opener, John Hartmann, the President and CEO of True Value, one of the largest hardware cooperatives in the world, reactivates his undercover skills from his time as an FBI agent when he investigates the state of the True Value company and employees. Other Season 6 executives include: The Mayor of Pittsburgh, Bill Peduto; CEO/Founder Doug Guller of Bikinis Sports Bar & Grill; Jose Costa, President of Maaco; Gina Rivera, Founder and President of Phenix Salons Inc.; and more.

Season 7 of UNDERCOVER BOSS premiered on Sunday, December 20, 2015 at 8:30pm ET/8pm PT on CBS. (Note that the start time in the Eastern, Central and Mountain time zones may by later, depending on the duration of the NFL football game that airs immediately before 60 MINUTES.) The season opens with three special Sunday broadcasts before the series moves to its regular timeslot -- Fridays at 8pm -- on January 8, 2016. In the season opener, "Buffalo Wings & Rings," President and CEO Nader Masadeh (aka the Sauce King of Cincinnati) goes undercover to guarantee that his Buffalo Wings & Rings restaurants each have the recipe for success, but he finds one kitchen is too hot to handle when faced with a fiery manager. In subsequent episodes of Season 7, UNDERCOVER BOSS follows: COO Shawnon Bellah (Nestle Toll House Cafe by Chip); President and CEO Sam Dushey (Shoppers World); and many more executives to be announced later.

CBS premiered the eighth season of UNDERCOVER BOSS, showing back-to-back new episodes, featuring: Sharon Price John, President and CEO, Build-A-Bear Workshop (8pm); and Karen Freeman-Wilson, Mayor of Gary, Indiana (9pm). Later in the season, the series goes undercover with: New York & Company CEO Greg Scott (December 28); Renee Maloney, co-founder and CFO of Painting with a Twist (January 4); Jeff Dudan, CEO and Founder of AdvantaClean, a Light Environmental Service (January 11); John Fuller, the new president and CEO of The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf (January 18); Michael Roper, president and CEO of Taco Bueno (April 28). On Friday, May 19, 2017 at 8pm ET/PT, CBS premiered the second of two special celebrity editions of UNDERCOVER BOSS, which also serves as the Season 8 finale. Internationally acclaimed chef and restaurateur Marcus Samuelsson goes undercover to find and mentor new culinary talent. During his mission, he discovers some gifted aspiring chefs at a public cooking class, a culinary institute, a high-end food truck, and a soup kitchen.

The ninth season of UNDERCOVER BOSS premiered on Wednesday, January 8, 2020 at 8pm ET/PT on CBS. The first four episodes of Season 9 include: Brandon Landry, founder and CEO of Walk On's Bistreaux & Bar; Stacy Anderson, brand president of Anytime Fitness; Scott Fischer, owner and CEO of Dippin' Dots; and Alan S. McKim, Chairman and CEO of Clean Harbors.

Season 10 of UNDERCOVER BOSS premiered on Friday, October 2, 2020 at 9pm ET/PT on CBS. In the season opener, "TGI Fridays," Ray Blanchette, chief executive officer, TGI Fridays, who started at the company as a manager in training on Oct. 2, 1989, finds out if he can still stand the heat in the kitchen and behind the bar, as he attempts to cook up extra business at a couple of locations. One week later, CBS debuted "Bowlero," during which Colie Edison, chief customer officer of Bowlero Corp and CEO of the Professional Bowlers Association, works to spare the customers from waiting too long when checking them in to bowl, and tries for a perfect game while taking food orders as a lane server. Subsequent episodes featured: Xavier Mufraggi, president and CEO, Club Med, Europe, Africa and the Middle East (October 16); Wan Kim, chairman of the board and CEO of Smoothie King (October 23); Adrian Perkins, mayor of Shreveport, LA (November 13); and more.
On Friday, January 7, 2022 at 8pm ET/PT, CBS premiered the eleventh season of UNDERCOVER BOSS. he first four companies are College HUNKS Hauling Junk & Moving (Jan. 7), Fremont Street Experience (Jan. 14), The Vitamin Shoppe (Jan. 21) and Rita's Italian Ice & Frozen Custard (Jan. 28). Air dates for the subsequent five companies' episodes will be announced in the near future and are listed here in alphabetical order: Coco's Bakery, Mayor of Fontana, Restoration 1, Round Table Pizza and UScellular.

"College HUNKS" (Friday, January 7, 2022): Omar Soliman and Nick Friedman, who co-founded College HUNKS Hauling Junk & Moving over 15 years ago, go on separate missions to make certain that the foundation of their company is strong enough to withstand exponential growth in the next couple of years. Will they need to do any heavy lifting within their company after seeing what's happening on the front lines? Will they (or any items in their care) crack under pressure while undercover?

"Fremont Street Experience" (Friday, January 14, 2022): Andrew Simon, president and CEO, Fremont Street Experience, who began his job at this hugely popular Las Vegas attraction at the start of the pandemic, goes undercover to discover and address problems that may be sparking the labor shortage causing significant lost profits. Will the boss "see the light" while perched 100 feet off the ground to help change light panels on its enormous $50 million canopy? How does he handle the sticky situation of scraping gobs of gum from the mall floor for hours at a time? Does he leave anyone hanging during a physically demanding shift at the Slotzilla zip line?

"The Vitamin Shoppe" (Friday, January 21, 2022): The Vitamin Shoppe's CEO, Sharon M. Leite, goes undercover to learn new ways to achieve added growth for her brand and to experience how her new operational changes and innovations are impacting the front lines. Will the boss find a healthy balance between the happiness of her employees and the satisfaction of their customers? Will her work as a store associate supplement the team's efforts or set them back?

"Rita's Ice" (Friday, January 28, 2022): Linda L. Chadwick, president and CEO, Rita's Italian Ice & Frozen Custard goes undercover to see how her new initiatives are working and to help franchisees become more profitable. Will the boss encounter procedures or equipment that seem "frozen in time"? What will it take to help her get a struggling franchisee to reach sweet success?

"Round Table Pizza" (Friday, February 25, 2022): Paul Damico, the former president and CEO, Round Table Pizza** goes undercover to glean effective ways to expand the longstanding West Coast pizza franchise eastward and attract a younger clientele. Damico credits the valuable brand insights he garnered on UNDERCOVER BOSS in 2013 when he was president of Moe's Southwest Grill as motivation to return undercover. Will he be able to take the heat in the kitchen when tasked with preparing piles of pizzas under tight time constraints? Can he withstand a hot slice of reality when front-line employees reveal where improvements could be made? **Since this episode filmed, Damico has taken a CEO position at a different company.

"UScellular" (Friday, March 4, 2022): Laurent "LT" Therivel, a proud Marine veteran who started as president and CEO of UScellular less than a year before his undercover mission, is intent on seeing how his new endeavors for brand growth are operating. Will he be all charged up while making customer calls offering the latest company deals? Will he connect well with staff sales associates and network engineers when learning about their day-to-day duties and challenges? Does he learn there's work to do to get their stores to have "high-speed" customer service?

"Restoration 1" (Friday, March 11, 2022): Gary Findley, CEO of Restoration 1, a self-described "Redneck CEO" from Texas, goes undercover to ensure that there are no flaws in the "playbook" of the company that would negatively impact all the franchises. Will he have the stomach to handle a job involving biohazard remediation? Will he find that cracks are starting to show as the business grows? How will he tackle navigating through a tight basement crawlspace in a hazmat suit?

"Mayor of Fontana" (Friday, April 1, 2022): Acquanetta Warren, mayor of Fontana, Calif., the fastest-growing city in Southern California, is on a mission to secure its future after the devasting impacts of the pandemic. Is the mayor willing to roll up her sleeves and get her hands dirty maintaining the city's sewers and cleaning the trash-littered parks?

"Coco's Bakery" (season finale; Friday, April 8, 2022): Warren Boone, chief people officer at Coco's Bakery Restaurants, seeks to determine the recipe for success by working on the shop floor. Does he have the ingredients necessary to tackle the company's needs?

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Studio Lambert