An Open Letter to McDonald’s

Today’s NYT Business section has a fascinating story about the restructuring planned at McDonald’s to address declining global sales:

Business is down so the company plans, “to sell off 3,500 restaurants, which would increase the percentage of stores that are franchises to 90 percent worldwide, from 81 percent.”

It also plans to simplify menus and offer choices to customers that let them build their own burgers.

Selling off restaurants is not a long-term strategy, but it is an effective tactic to satisfy investors.

Simplifying menus and getting customers to participate in a meal are both smart moves.

Added to these tactics and strategies, why not:

1. Announce that the minimum wage for McDonald’s domestically will always be 10%  higher than its fast food competitors like Shake Shack and Chipotle’s.

2. Buy as many food products as possible within a 250 mile radius of the specific restaurant.

3. Insist that all its beef come from farms that practice up-to-date practices in husbandry and slaughter.

4. Sell smaller portions–sliders–for less money.

5. Bake rolls on-site.

6. Grind beef daily on site.  Using beef from a smaller range of farms in order to reduce bacterial risks.

None of these approaches has enough to do with markets outside the U.S.  Nor do I know the demographics of McDonald’s sales: Where are their biggest profits?  Who are their most successful target consumers?  What are the profiles of their employees who are the most productive?  Who stays working for McDonalds the longest and why?



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