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Ray Kroc Fast Food
Ray Kroc and fast food go hand in hand. When the 52 -year old milkshake salesman went to San Bernardino, California, and saw the efficiency with which the MacDonald brothers were operating their fast food hamburger joint, Ray Kroc saw nothing but possibilities; he wanted to go national.
After convincing the MacDonald brothers to sell him their operation, this entrepreneur set off on his plan to revolutionize the fast food industry. He developed a sophisticated and uniform system of production, ensuring that as the company expanded, all the hamburgers and French fries customers were buying in California looked and tasted the same as the ones purchased in Florida, and New York. Kroc was building a consistency and a brand that would come to reshape the American industry.
Today, his success in doing so is being widely imitated throughout the world. Defining the basics of the service he wanted to provide, breaking the labour into an assembly line production, and engaging in a never-ending process of fine-tuning the system – these are some of the lessons that managers and executives today are taking away from the Kroc’s experience.
As one can imagine, in serving 54 million customers ever day, the success of McDonald’s and Ray Kroc’s fast food initiative extends far beyond just the fast food industry. Not only did Ray Kroc change the way a hamburger was produced, but he also transformed the nation’s entire cultural landscape. In fact, while over 95 percent of American children recognize McDonald’s Golden Arches, they have also surpassed the Christian cross as the second most recognized symbol in the world.
Despite the company’s tremendous success, it is not without its critics. With obesity rising as the second leading preventable cause of death in the U.S. after smoking, the entrepreneur has largely been blamed for his role in escalating the problem. However, that hasn’t stopped the company’s sales from continuing to grow.
Mcdonald’s operations have kept on expanding throughout the world. Today, variations of McDonald’s can be found in over 65 countries. In Japan, the company name was changed to Makudonaldo to make it easier to pronounce, and the mascot became Donald McDonald. Keeping Ray Kroc’s commitment to fast food, these international outlets have also somewhat adapted their menus for local taste. For instance, McDonald’s in the Philippines offers McSpaghetti noodles. In fact, one in three new McDonald’s that open do so outside of the U.S.; International sales are well on their way to surpassing domestic sales.
He might have passed away in 1984, but the impact of Ray Kroc on the fast food industry is unmatchable.
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