Ray Kroc Created Quick Service Franchises One Burger Stand At A Time

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ray kroc McDonald founder

Ray Kroc Created Quick Service Franchises One Burger At A Time

Ray Kroc Founder of The McDonald’s Empire might not have known his corporation would serve millions of customers a day in more than 30,000 restaurants worldwide and be the largest restaurant chain of all time!

He did however know his leadership and business sense would help him complete his objective of building a complete “set of instructions” for operating a McDonald’s restaurant.

the golden arches

First, get to work ‘on’ the business, not ‘in’ it. When Ray Kroc secured the master franchising rights to McDonald’s back in the mid-1950’s, he didn’t go to work “in” the restaurant. He went to work “on” the business. To Kroc, the first McDonald’s restaurant was a model or prototype that was to be reproduced again and again in cities and towns all over the country.

Instead of rolling up his sleeves and getting his hands dirty and run the first McDonald’s, he decided  step outside and analyze every operational function of the restaurant from an onlookers perspective. From purchasing to prep to cooking and cleaning and so on. Without changing the essence of the concept, he made refinements and proceeded to develop a comprehensive set of standards and procedures, a system, if you will, for running a hamburger stand “the McDonald’s way.”

the McDonald's way the big mac



Now he was able to show others — in this case, his franchisees, exactly how to run a McDonald’s restaurant in a proven and systematic way that virtually ensured their success.


Ray Kroc Created Quick Service Franchises One Burger Stand At A Time

In fact, his main entree was the business, a McDonald’s Franchise. His primary customers were not the people who bought and ate the burgers and fries, but the people who would pay for the right to own and operate a McDonald’s restaurant.

Kroc knew every restaurant had to be operated in exactly the same manner.

He wanted to convince people looking for business opportunities to choose a McDonald’s over another franchise or any another business for that matter, and to do that he had to make it the best business opportunity available. His competition wasn’t other restaurants, but other business opportunities.

Ray Kroc Created Quick Service Franchises One Burger Stand At A Time

He refined it to the point that it would operate in a consistent, predictable manner, the same way time after time with a low-skilled staff made up largely of teenagers. Low pay scale labor, better profit margins.

He required every new franchisee to attend the corporation’s Hamburger University to learn the McDonald’s “system” or way of doing business regardless of their experience.

Each franchisee would know precisely know how to operate a McDonald’s restaurant.

They were told to operate their restaurants “exactly” this way because “it worked.”

the golden arches


If a franchisee deviated from the system in any way they risked losing their franchise.

Kroc believed “the system” was the key to creating a successful business.

cast of McDonald Characters

Kroc’s theory “the System” and it’s Cast of Characters! A future post in the making!


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