February 25, 2003

Resistance is (NOT) Futile

Four Goals of McDonaldization

  • Efficiency -- Rational calculation of best cost effective mode of production. Cheapest per unit price.

  • Calculability -- (or quantity rather than quality) Assessment of outcomes based on quantifiable rather than subjective criteria. Therefore, they extol the big Mac rather than the good Mac.

  • Predictability -- Organize production process to guarantee uniformity of product and standardized outcomes.

  • Control -- Substitution of more predictable non-human labor for human labor.

George Ritzer is a Professor of Sociology at the University of Maryland. He is author of Author of "The McDonaldization of Society"

McDonaldization is defined by Ritzer as "...the process by which the principles of the fast-food restaurant are coming to dominate more and more sectors of American society as well as of the rest of the world. There are steps that can be taken to cope with McDonaldization. However, I hold little hope that such actions, even if they were all to be employed by many people, would reverse the trend toward McDonaldization."

My kids will tell you, we don't do MakkyDee's since they were little. I have abhored the place since my college days, and finally Dr. Ritzer has come along to flesh out my disdain for and resistance of the culture of the fast food industry, of which McD's is the torch bearer.
Coming...some pros and cons of McDonaldization.

Posted by fred1st at February 25, 2003 05:05 AM | TrackBack

As a four-year employee of McDs, with two of those as an assistant manager, I'm looking forward to more. That was 20+ years ago for me, so I can hardly speak to the here-n-now, but my initial thoughts are that McDs is the food equivalent of the best practices discovered by Mr. Ford many moons ago.

Oh! I could talk hamburgers forever...

Posted by: Scott Chaffin at February 25, 2003 08:41 AM

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