Have you notice the way McDonald's cashier treat the McDonald customer nowadays? They will attend to the queue by asking what would you want for that day but they would have put the tray where they would put the food you ordered oln their right side or your left side. After you pay, they would ask you to wait for your food on the left. Some would even ask you to do it by saying "Wait here on the left". Reminded me of Beyonce's song "To the left, to the left" (many things reminded me of her nowadays, including how she will look in a Wonder Woman custome)
Anyway, when you come to think of it, isn't what McDonald is practising (which I can only attest to in Malaysia) since middle of this year, as I am their loyal Big Breakfast customer, is just one level down of a factory line. Queue, order, pay, go to the left, wait, get the food, get sauce and cutleries, eat and go. Even their drive-thru have been more automated with you having to talk to a talking post. I had to reverse back to it when it was first introduced and still saw a few cars having to do it as Golden Arches (McDonald Malaysia's parent company) started to be Americanised, more.
They have been cutting cost (from observation with no facts to back this up whatsoever) since they don't give out sauce in packets anymore and utilising deliveries and drive-thru more. I read somewhere (unverified again) that their profit in Malaysia dipped a bit 2,3 years ago and that was why they changed their campaign, their advertising agency and even closed some non-performing McDonald's. They were also offering the chance of people taking up their franchise and opened up their own McDonald in their area, especially at place they have no presence yet.
When they opened up one in Banting, I made a faux pas one day when I mentioned to a local that I never seen a McDonald open up a branch in backwater town as the one in Banting was a standalone building with a drive-thru to boot. From my own analysis, McDonald of old didn't have the business plan of KFC which opened up a branch in any small town in Malaysia. That's why their branches have more presence than any other franchise in Malaysia.
So, business-wise, is McDonald trying to play catch-up and feeling the heat of globalising too much or is it still the success story of yore? They may adapt fast but are they fast enough? They did try to introduce weird concoction which some had a degeree of success like the Prosperity Burger, which is currenly like a limited issued timepiece which when it is sold, everyone will try to eat as much during its issuance.
McDonald's for now is very succesful but may not be that invincible. There are a lot of institution which we have thought to be invincible has crumbled or slowly crumbling. Lehman Brothers? Citibank? Just because McDonald's sell food doesn't mean that they won't feel the pinch or goes belly up like these financial giants. Don't get me start on Starbucks...
Just a thought, is this so-called globalisation a failure? Or is it just a phase?