World McDonaldization

McDonald’s is the leader in the fast food industry. For years their philosophy of providing good food for a low price has lead to astounding growth throughout the world. This has lead to new jobs and economic benefit for wherever the stores are located. McDonald’s uses strong marketing and solid economic practices to insure they will not lose their position in the fast food industry. McDonald’s is a huge business and it has many effects on society both positive and negative. mcdvoice

The McDonaldization of the American Nation has resulted in many new jobs being created. However there is a negative stigma surrounding the jobs that McDonald’s offers. A job at McDonald’s is rarely seen as a job that could become one’s career. Although most jobs at all fast food restaurants are viewed negatively, McDonald’s is the premier fast food restaurant and so the bulk of the criticism falls on them. There are a lot of complaints directed at McDonald’s for their low paying jobs, but McDonald’s provides a key role in this society for giving people jobs when they need them. On the McDonald’s home page there is a variety of jobs that are offered to the average worker, and paired with these jobs is a list of skills that a person must be competent at in order to correctly perform the job. These competency requirements are very low and can be fulfilled by the vast majority of the American public.

Most Americans view working at McDonald’s as a job that can start a teenager off into the working world, but they do not expect this teenager to work there for more than a year at McDonald’s. People who work at McDonald’s serving food during their teen years are seen to have a job that is inferior. Although working at a McDonald’s as a teenager is not desired by most, the people who do apply for job and get hired are pleased to have the job. They know that they will most likely not have a career with McDonald’s and yet they are happy that McDonald’s is giving them a chance to make money and get some job experience. In America a job at McDonald’s is looked down on but that is not the case in many parts of the world. Rarely are middle aged adults serving food at a McDonald’s in the US if they are not on the management, but in some countries having a job at McDonald’s provides a secure paycheck and a safe future. Americans tend to forget that there are other people in the world who would be grateful for a job that pays four dollars an hour not to mention the seven dollars an hour or more that US citizens are getting paid at McDonald’s. In the US McDonald’s are not viewed as nice restaurants; they provide average food for a cheap price, and this keeps the public coming back for more. However in poorer parts of the world McDonald’s is viewed as a gourmet restaurant by some, and securing a job there would raise the persons living style enormously.

McDonald’s is a pioneer of the fast food industry and the jobs offered at one of its restaurants are similar to those offered at the other fast food burger joints. If a person was to be hired at McDonald’s they will most likely be started off as the frying person. This person is in charge of all the French fries and other frying processes that take place during a typical day. Next they will either be trained how to make burgers or how to man the front counter. Males are usually trained to make burgers quickly and efficiently while females are usually trained on the front counter and the register. There can be a lot of pressure for the employees to work quickly when many large orders are coming through. McDonald’s has a reputation to keep that is reflected in its ability to serve the customer his or her food in very little time. If a person was to work at McDonald’s they will acquire very few skills from the employment. One may think that they will learn how to make French fries and hamburgers but this is hardly the case. The French fries are prepackaged and frozen, and all the employee needs to do is drop them in the oil and press a button which will start a timer. Patties are taken out of the freezer dropped on the grill, and then flipped over when the timer goes off. Both flipping burgers and making french fries can be dangerous as the hot oil involved often splatters on the workers arms causing pain and discoloration of the skin. It takes no skills to make the food at McDonald’s, and the other duties requirements of the job take only slightly more skill. Working at McDonald’s may teach a person communication skills, but more than likely the worker will be parroting what his or her boss told them to say. The article “Luring Youth to Fast Food Jobs” published in USA Today shows the dissatisfaction of the employees working at McDonald’s, particularly because of the unsafe and greasy working conditions. Working at McDonald’s does not teach useful skills that can easily applied to other jobs, and these jobs can be unsafe. McDonald’s does provide good food for a low price, and that is what American consumers are concerned with.

McDonald’s has high popularity among many Americans. The Golden Arches are a symbol of one of the major structures in place in America, fast food. Since McDonald’s was first opened in the year 1940 in San Bernardino, California, its goal has always been to promote its fast service and great food. There has been some great slogans and advertisements from McDonald’s. Some of its most famous ones have been in more recent years. Slogans such as, “Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun”, “You deserve a break today”, “I’m Lovin’ it”, and the most recent, “McDonald’s Dollar Menuaires” (McDonald’s). These slogans serve as a gateway between McDonald’s and its customers. It is McDonald’s way of getting their name out.

Many other ways McDonald’s has gone in order to promote their business was to get involved in many different aspects of life. McDonald’s is trying to prove to consumers that they can come to McDonald’s for any type of occasion. I’m sure there is someone at McDonald’s who would be willing to have customer’s wedding in their store if there was someone willing to do so.

McDonald’s is spending much of its money on promotions and good public relations in order to keep their business going. There also has been several times that bad publicity can hurt their company. Critics are at the forefront of this anti-McDonald’s movement. Critics do what they do best, criticize. A good example of bad publicity is the movie “Super Size Me” by Morgan Spurlock in 2004. Morgan Spurlock spent thirty days eating nothing but McDonald’s in order to examine the results. Everyone agreed, including three doctors, a nutritionist, and even a spokesperson for the McDonald’s said that eating McDonald’s is bad for you. This movie is definitely bad publicity for McDonald’s. That is one reason behind their marketing for their new line of premium salads and sandwiches. Yet it turns out this new line of food is just as unhealthy as any of their other sandwiches, but because of good marketing skills that McDonald’s has employed, people do not know that this food is just as bad for you as the next item on the menu.

No matter what business you are in, it is always a good idea to have a solid marketing department on your payroll because through this very department is your ticket to your consumer. If the consumer does not believe your product is necessary, then you are dead in the water. McDonald’s has realized this and taken full advantage if it. Using economic principals McDonald’s has been able to capitalize on its marketing campaign.

Economists who study industrial organization divide markets into four types-monopoly, oligopoly, monopolistic competition, and perfectly competition. McDonald’s is monopolistic competition. Monopolistic competition, like oligopoly, is a market structure that lies between the extreme cases of perfectly competition and monopoly. But compared with the only a few sellers in the oligopoly market, there are many firms competing for the same group of customers in monopolistic competition. Each firm produces a product that is at least slightly different from those of other firms. Thus, rather than being a price taker, each firm faces a downward-sloping demand curve. And firms can enter (or exit) the market without restriction. Thus, the number of firms in the market adjusts until economic profits are driven to zero.

Like other kinds of firms, McDonald’s aims to maximize profit. Profit is a firm’s total revenue minus its total cost. Total revenue is the amount that the firm receives for the sale of its output and total cost is the amount that the firm pays to buy inputs. Therefore, we can increase profit by increasing total revenue, by decreasing total cost, or doing both.