The Absolute Truth About Marketing
Friday, January 13, 2006
  McBadExperience Again
McDonald’s has lost that lovin’ feeling. Yesterday I had another typical ‘don’t care’ experience. Usually they forget to put either serviettes or sugar or milk sachet or tea bag – or all of the above - in with my drive-through order. When you drive though again to get them they don’t care. McDonalds Mudgee, Lithgow and the one on the M5 compete to out-“don’t care” each other. Yesterday in Lithgow I stopped for coffee and ordered a travel cup (an extra expense for me and profit for them). The surly, red-headed hardfacedbitch who served me at first said “I don’t think we’ve got any left,” in a tone that accused me of stupidity for asking. There were lots left. Then I waited and waited and waited as others who had ordered from the McCafe after me were served. In the meantime a young girl walked past me with a travel cup which, it turns out was mine. The system – not signposted anywhere – was order at one end of the counter and stand around to collect your order at the other end. They simply left my order standing there until a young thief stole it. When I finally asked where it was, hardfacedbitch said “You must’ve left it there and someone has taken it.” That’s right folks. I caused McDonalds to lose a travel mug. In a sulk, she made me another cup of coffee. I was so enraged and full of bile for McDonald’s that as I left I forgot to pick up my muffin that I’d paid for. As a side experience I had stood in the slowest queue in history (at this allegedly fast food outlet) only to be told in an insulting way that fries weren’t available until 10.30am (Stupid, everyone knows that.) Well, the kind of droogs who live on the crap McDonald’s serves and who will tolerate these pitiful levels of customer service might know that. But I don’t make it a habit of studying the rules of modern grazing for the masses. Why can’t I get fries when I want fries? They were for my grandson to amuse him for a few kilometres. I sympathise with the character in Falling Down played by Michael Douglas and wished I had the freedom they have in America to deliver the same message.
You see, the problem you have, from the 'get-go',is that you actually expect anything at all close to a decent, meaningful experience from a multi-national corporation. Especially one that is semi-evil in its essence.

Also, what can you really expect from someone who is actually working at McDonald's? It's not like getting a gig there -at any stage of your life - is something aspirational. In fact, in your heart of hearts, you would certainly be feeling the first pangs of 'a life wallowing in mediocrity (at best)' the moment you put on the uniform. It would certainly be the unique (weird) person who got up in the mrning ready to take on the world, from behind the counter at Maccas.

McDonald's is what it is - and you shouldn't really be going there in the first place. There are other places to get coffee and chips for the kids.

Perhaps the local coffee shop/cafe/milk bar en route would be better in meeting your service expectations?

And at the same time, you'd be supporting the local small business community - who is being pressured by guys like McD's.
Semi-evil? They go all the way when they are really bad. But McDonald's hsa so many good things going for it that make long distance car trips (in Australia, at least) less of a drag. Such as clean toilets. Playgrounds for kids who need a break out after 2 hours sitting in the back saying "Are we there yet?" A bright, clean (usually) environment. Friendly (usually) people, young and eager... And they are working on the food. Their salads are OK, if tasteless. And there's not much they can do to f--- up a bacon and egg mcmuffin. If you can get them to leave the disgusting sauce off the lean beef burger its edible. Apple OK, water OK. Coffee fair to good, if bad for you anyway. Plus I sometimes get a crappy toy for little Xavier. SO, Anonymous, I disagree that i shouldn't be going there. McDonald's franchisees are like local businesses, in that they take the big risk, they own the store and employ the people and train the young kids. The "big corporation" is in fact a thousand smaller companies sharing a brand and a franchise system. My complaint is not that McDonald's is McDonald's, but that it sometimes fails to live up to its own ideals. A little more arse-kicking from head office needed. I think I'll send this blog to McDonald's HQ in Thornleigh. Thanks for your comment.

One thing you can to add with your blog when you send it to McDonalds.

Can you ask them why they charge an extra 50c for a McOz meal when 5 out of 5 times (that I went) they didn't put in the grilled onions? What's a "supposed" Aussie burger without grilled onions? I don't know if I've lost the plot, but I don't remember them telling their customers that the McOz doens't come with grilled onions anymore.

Mind you, I got the McOz meals at the Thornleigh McDonalds. That's right. The one across the street from the McDonalds HQ in Oz.
The matrix has disturbances?!?
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