There was a McDonald's across from our high school; it was a great place to grab some lunch, because it was served within seconds of ordering, which meant that you still had time for a few rounds of euchre.
Twenty years on, I admit I don’t go into MacDonald’s all that often anymore. I like Wendy’s choices because they have better salads and baked potatoes, all of which are theoretically easier on my no-longer-high-school-figure. However, when we are headed up Highway 400 to the boat, the one in Barrie is a great place to stop and let our dog Jasper have a run. Sometimes, I pop in, usually for one of those trusty old favourites such as a Big Mac or a bacon and egg McMuffin. Or at least I used to. I was astounded when the Big Mac took over five minutes to be served. Heads would have rolled in the old days. I know this because my best friend was the swing manager at that one across from the high school.
Fool me once, shame on you. Serve me slow twice, shame on me. The very next visit, the bacon and egg McMuffin took 12 minutes. We’re sorry for the wait. Move along.
What I cannot figure out is why.
In the old days there was more production for the bin, in case of demand. This I also know because if I stopped in at the end of my friend’s swing shift, there was usually something left over. Perhaps because the product line is so much broader, there is nothing cooked until it is ordered. Still, Wendy’s chili on a baked potato is quickly served.
It is a very busy McDonald’s…lots of buses stop here. That should be incentive to be very efficient. Oddly, it is apparently not.
It is not a staffing issue, because there are a lot of people there milling around behind the counter. It might be a management issue, because as I observe them for 12 minutes some of the staff do not appear to be doing all that much.
Whatever the reason, I don’t stop there any more. Instead, I go on to the Lick’s Hamburgers further up the road. There, at least I will be entertained with great music and a smile while I wait for my freshly cooked hamburger to come up, prepared exactly the way I want it.
Lesson- if it can’t be fast, then it should at least be an event.