The McDonaldization Of Business

“If we eat a thousand years of McDonald’s ham and potatoes, we will become taller, our skin will become white, and our hair will be blonde.” That’s a quote from Den Fujita, the Japanese billionaire who brought McDonald’s to Japan. This means that indeed foreign businesses embraced the McDonaldization of business, and the lifestyle of the irrationality of rationality. According to McDonaldization critics, if we let convenience and efficiency run rampant, it will lead us into the future of a homogenized world.

Sociologist George Ritzer, who coined the phrase McDonaldization, defines it as, the process by which the principles of fast food restaurants are coming to dominate more and more sectors of American society as well as the rest of the world. This process extends its practices to all types of businesses and lifestyles. As people adjust to business McDonaldization, it transcends their everyday lives.

McDonaldization consists of four elements: Efficiency, Calculability, Predictability and Control. Ritzer calls these the dimensions of McDonaldization and it is the four pillars on which capitalism is now building its empire. Through efficiency, the product or service is offered in the most direct way. Calculability is the belief of consumers that bigger is better, plus the idea that they get more for their money.
Assuming that many people don’t like surprises, businesses create homogeneous services or products that give consumers a sense of predictability to expect.

A high amount of control must be implemented to accomplish all of these dimensions. Ritzers focuses on controlling non-human substitution for human technology. By making tasks repetitive and forcing employees to refuse to think, employers can maintain closer control over them, {www. McDonaldization.com.} The McDonalds company lists this aspect as a company mission statement that exploits the strengths of the McDonalds system through innovation and technology,{.www. McDonalds.com. }

McDonaldization’s effects can be seen everywhere today and it reaches extremes. There are various stores, more than likely seen in suburban areas, such as Wal Mart, where you can shop for almost anything from food to clothing, develop your film and eye lenses in less than an hour, pump your gas, access an automated teller machine, eat at McDonald’s and grab some Starbucks. Additionally, everything can be done without interacting with a store employee using bank cards and automated checkout. Increased security surveillance compensates for obvious concerns with minimized employees participating in various ATMs, both enforcing the control dimension.

The practice of co-branding and franchise positioning within a franchise, McDonald’s in Wal Mart is creating an unbeatable convenience factor and this is just the tip of the McDonaldized iceberg.

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