Friday, April 15, 2005

50th Anniversary Press Conference

The McChronicles just finished viewing the McDonald's webcast. It was a great event - we wish we could have been there.

The history, pride, and enthusiasm for tomorrow were very strong. Kudos to the team that put this event together.

You can view the recorded conference.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Celebrate McDonald's Day!

Image copyright McDonald's 2005

Register for their webcast here.

McDonald's 50th Anniversary

Read what McDonald's has to say about their upcoming milestone.

Happy McDonald's Day!

McDonald's turns 50 this Friday. The McChronicles is disappointed that the company is not making more of the occasion. Admittedly, we don't know what it is like to walk a mile in their shoes, so no criticism.

They are unveiling their newest store, in Chicago, to mark the day. Read about the Croatian immigrant who owns the new store, the company's timeline, and a few other details

Monday, April 11, 2005

A Few Good Fries

A McChronicles Field Reporter offers this position on a recent experience:
Went to the Washington Mills, NY drive thru for a quick bite on Wed.
one car ahead of me and went thru very fast.
breakfast - egg & cheese bagel w/ a Coke
The first person who takes the order/money was excellent ...very
pleasant and made the stop a positive overall ... the last person who
fills the order ...didn't say 2 words and gave off an "I hate my job
aura"...and it wasn't busy!

I believe when it comes to driving thru, its the first window guy (the
one who takes your order/money in the dual window system) that is the
crucial key to setting the overall tone of the transaction.
If that individual is pleasant and gives off a good vibe to the
customer, then the next window guy (with the one who gives you the
order) becomes of little consequence.
That person can be un-friendly or get the order wrong, and yet still,
only turn a positive into a neutral experience. It would be extremely
hard to completely override the first window impression.

Reminds me of a movie...
Son, we live in a world that has drive-thrus, and those drive-thrus have
to be guarded by employees with headsets. Who's gonna do it? You? You,
Mr. Customer?

I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly
fathom. You weep for your Egg McMuffin, and you curse the McDonald's. You
have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know - that
the breakfast rush, while hectic, probably saved lives; and my
existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, saves lives.

You don't want the truth because deep down in places you don't talk
about at parties, you want me on that window -- you need me on that
window. We use words like "hash brown," "cream," "McGriddle." We use
these words as the backbone of a life spent defending something. You use
them as a punch line. I have neither the time nor the inclination to
explain myself to a customer who rises and sleeps under the blanket of
the very fast food that I provide and then questions the manner in which
I provide it.

I would rather you just said "thank you" and drove off on
your way. Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a headset and stand the post.
Either way, I don't give a damn what you think you are entitled to!

Talk about emotions!

McDonald's new downtown (Chicago) site gets ready for party

April 15th is "McDonald's Day" - the anniversary of the company's founding.
To celebrate this, the company is building a wild new store in the Chicago area.

The latest design is a far cry from the modest first restaurant opened by Ray Kroc 50 years ago.
Check it out.
By John Schmeltzer Tribune staff reporter
Published April 10, 2005

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Foolish Chatter

If you are interested in financial-related chat threads regarding McDonald's, check out the Motley Fool's website, You have to register (minimal hassle) and you might find some like-minded souls.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Maudlin for Mauldin

Mauldin, SC exterior. Looking great!

Mauldin, SC interior. Very clean.
Store Address: West Butler Rd., Mauldin SC
Time: 1:00 PM
Outside Appearance: Overall very good - "The store was recently Re-Imaged" per the manager on duty.
Service Time: 1 minute 20 Sec
Stated Order: A number 3 and Fish Fillet sandwich
Order Filled: A number 3 and Fish Fillet sandwich
Quality: fresh, hot and appetizing.
Cleanliness: Immaculate, no unsightly trash or brooms out.

Service time was very good at less than 2 minutes. The manager who waited on us was friendly, professional and efficient.

The sandwiches were served up in attractive cardboard boxes made of recycled paper products. There was also an ecology-minded message printed on each box reminding the consumer not to litter. Another box crushing of the enclosed contents.

The store had just been "re imaged" in December according to the manager. The new style was contemporary with very nice tiled floor and counters, granite-type counter tops, a tray-style ceiling over the main dining area, and upscale booths and tables/chairs.

Now down south.... this is called "livin' in high cotton!"

The Play area was also nicely done with a circus mural painted on 1 wall and a bench with a life-size Ronald McDonald seated, just waiting for some little tyke to drop in his lap for a photo op.

Overall Customer Rating: Fantastic

Mohawk Street, Utica, NY

Mohawk Street Interior. Very clean.
Utica's Mohawk Street McDonald's ranks very high in some categories, and looks weak in others.

The McChronicles visited this store today and was (as usual) impressed with the cleanliness and orderliness. When it comes to cleanliness, this place always rates high.

Today our team watched, incredulous, as customers backed up for almost ten minutes. The amazing part was that people seemed to be waiting for coffee, apple pies, and hamburgers!

While the store staff sure seems friendly, the also seemed to just not "get it" when it comes to optimizing transactions. As the crowd swelled, no manager stepped in to sort out the situation. Nothing seemed to get fixed - people just waited for "standard operating procedure".

All the ingredients are there for an EXCELLENT store. The McChronicles hopes it all comes together.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Simpsonville Hosts The McChronicles

The McChronicles Hits Simpsonville, SC

Simpsonville, SC Does Good

Simpsonville, SC Does Good

Location: Simpsonville, SC
Address: Fairview Road
Time: 8:30 PM
Outside Appearance: Overall good, but there was some trash in the parking lot.
Service Time: Less than 4 minutes
Stated Order: A number 3
Order Filled: A number 3
Motif: Early '70s Hooterville


Service time was acceptable. The McShuffle (see earlier post) lasted about 3 minutes. Longest wait was on the fries.

The dining room looked good except for the back of the store where there where fries all over the floor.

The dining room order was nicely arranged.

The assembly of the double 1/4 pounder looker rushed.

Overall Customer Rating: Good

Obvious Pride & Commitment

A McChronicles team hit the New Hartford McDonald's at 1:30PM yesterday just as two waves of school bus action was subsiding. A Clinton HS bus was filling up and departing, and some kindergarten party was just winding down inside the dining room. Needless to say, the crew was stressed and the place was messed up a bit.

The New Hartford crew was just awesome. Our order was taken politely and quickly. And it was obvious that the crew (every single person observed - counter, cooking, dining room) really cared about doing a great job. Even as 50 kids wrapped up their ravaging of the store, the crew was still smiling (even joking). The cleaning girl sprang into action, the floor got mopped, the papers were disposed of, and the condiments were refilled. The counter people were great, and the cooks were laughing while they kept up with the new orders.

There were sales stats for the store posted on a whiteboard - with a call to maintain a focus on QSC (quality, service, cleanliness).

Speaking for all customers - we truly appreciate the New Hartford store's experience. Great job.