McDonald's Big Tent

Dear Fellow Owners,

It’s been a busy week at McDonald’s, our hometown. McDonald’s released strong numbers to Wall Street. It’s good to see our brand do well and good that our franchisor is healthy. Many of us remember when the stock was at $12. We are a long way from those days and are best served to keep it that way. Our results are impressive no matter how the analysts parse it. Our brand does its best work, when it’s delivering results to both our owners and our shareholders. Delivering to Main Street and Wall Street.  And let’s not forget about our suppliers. We want them to be successful too. A healthy three legged stool is a strong one.

Our US comp sales were up 5.7%. On the size and scale of our brand, that’s very impressive. Yes, our customer count trend is not where we would like it, but growing sales and average check are important too. Sometimes it’s more important to grow average check, especially in a growing economy. It’s not unusual for us to lose customer counts during an expanding economy and gain them during a contracting economy. What’s unusual is getting people to spend more money with us. It’s a sign that our investments are paying off. Chris said it well in his system address, our plan (with adjustments) is working.

Chris also mentioned making plans for the future and how we would do it. He talked about inclusion and the importance of capturing everyone’s voice. Working with the NFLA, OPNAD, and NLSC leadership. It takes longer to get everyone involved. There is far more debate and discussion. It’s a lot faster to move with a small group. Traveling with 1,700 owners (with lots of strong and diverse opinions) takes more time. It’s worth the time. You are worth the time. Reggie used the African proverb “if you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.”  

We are the big tent and we want to remain the big tent. Where we make it work for everyone. Where we even find a place for Uncle Fred. That’s what strong brands do, especially those made in America.

Your “looking to go far” NOA Chair,