The Founder

August 22, 2018

We hear so much criticism everywhere lately that I wanted to take some time to point out a company doing thing right.  Most would have thought this unlikely 5 or 10 years ago, but this iconic company has started to find success in many smarts steps adding up to giant leaps in their performance at both the cash register and on Wall Street.  


I get asked where I got the idea for The Media Store, what radio station or media company inspired it?  Most are surprised when I tell them the idea came from a company that has nothing to do with radio and it is one I have admired my entire radio career. 


Ray Kroc was my hero and I remember seeing him in interviews and reading about his dedication to giving the little guy a chance to advance if he was willing to sweat.  Ray once said, “Luck is the dividend of sweat. The more you sweat, the luckier you get.”  



These words stuck with me as I started my radio career at 100.9 WXIZ-FM in Waverly, Ohio at 19 years old.  I sold and was on-air but quickly learned, like Ray Kroc, that sales were my thing.  My first remote was at the brand-new McDonald's on US-23 on the south end of town.  I sold it and I had a portable marti unit in my car, so I was the talent too.  I was making a little money and having lots of fun.


Over the years competition got fierce, as it always does, and McDonald's was attacked from all sides.  This was not just Burger King or Wendy's, new "fast casual" burger chains like 5 Guys Burgers & Fries and Culver's were stealing customers. 


The biggest impact was made by a surprise competitor, as the coffee giant Starbucks had the most impact on McDonald's leading to McCafe', 24-hour breakfast and a sleek design to stores with more comfortable interiors!  Starbucks, now the #2 fast food chain, was having a big impact!  


The road to success has never been a smooth one for McDonald's throughout its entire history.  Mistakes made along the way led many consumers, like me, to find new alternatives to our once favorite burger place.  The Founder was gone, so many figured the company would never recover in the face on many new competitors and America's changing tastes!


I have been using McDonald's lately as my place for good coffee, free Wi-Fi and cheap lunch.  The 2 for $5 mix and match got my attention and I hadn't had a Big Mac in 15 years.  So, I got 2 for $5 and they were very good.  So, I returned and tried mixing the Big Mac with a 10-piece McNuggets and I was once again hooked!  


I just read an article on about McDonald's roll-out of "fresh beef" Quarter Pounders in 8 cities including Atlanta, Charlotte, Miami, Nashville, Orlando, Memphis, Raleigh and Salt Lake City.  Using a Tweet of video with john Goodman, McDonald's started to set the stage for this change last spring.  The video logged over 3 million views!