Nature of the Change Process
Changes in the McDonald’s company are primarily related to changes in the quantity, quality, and interaction patterns of employees of the enterprise. They are associated with a growing desire to organize the workflow so that the manager only coordinates the actions of employees. There is a tendency to reduce the responsibility for the tasks of the leader. They do not seek to personally fulfill all the goals but aim to inspire and direct their subordinates to solve the tasks themselves (Sligo and al., 2019). Leaders communicate with subordinates from the position of a consultant who delegates and distributes functions and production tasks. The work of the head, as a result of the current changes, is carried out mainly in three directions (Evans & Farrell, 2022). They are the definition of the company’s goals and strategies, providing staff with information materials and representation in external instances.
In McDonald’s restaurants, where a change in the direction of this leadership style is especially powerful, decisions are made collectively, and planning meetings and brainstorming sessions are held more often. As a result of the changes, joint entertainment events, trips, and game training began to be held for employees in order to bring together and strengthen the team. The boss is not against subordinates expressing their opinions, and critical remarks cannot become a reason for punishment. The main motivation in such a team is various types of incentives. At the same time, the head, as before the changes, remains a true professional leader, leading a team of like-minded people (Choromides, 2021). They set the direction, define the purpose of the work, and create an inspiring atmosphere.
Moreover, the changes are strategic in nature and consist of the evolvement in the mission and corporate values on which the organization’s policy is based. Values are a tool for the operational management of the company, so their changes entail changes in management. These are general directives that establish the foundations of how operational management is carried out in the organization (Mansaray, 2019). Values help McDonald’s management and employees determine how to behave in a situation of uncertainty, indicate a direction, and coordinate movement.
The main values of McDonald’s were previously the impressions of visitors and constant improvements. Despite the continued commitment to these principles, the aspect of manufacturability has also been added to the number of important principles (Jacobs & Pretorius, 2020). Maximum automation is becoming an industry standard for McDonald’s. It includes a service of mobile payments and pre-orders for restaurants, which requires the inclusion of remote employees in the team and their inclusion in the team.
McDonald’s technological decision is considered to be the creation of a platform for collecting reviews about establishments. The company’s representatives advocate the visualization of sales reports, which is more visual. The integration of the restaurant management system with 1C also allows to implementation of the principle of manufacturability, opening up new opportunities for changes in management (Malmelin & Virta, 2021). Since people are the most unstable component of production, more mass video surveillance will be introduced for their work. It will allow monitoring compliance by both kitchen staff and cashiers with the rules of the institution and sanitary and hygienic standards.
Key Drivers for Change
Key drivers for change in the management style of the company are associated with the emergence of a large number of new remote employees engaged in the maintenance of various McDonald’s applications. Such employees cannot be fully controlled, like those who work in the kitchen or at the checkout, and communication with them is complicated by distance. That is why administrative changes in management are necessary. First of all, they will help to organize convenient communication between employees and management (Andreasen & Gammelgaard, 2018). This will contribute to both setting tasks and motivating employees.
With the new management style, the leader can easily contact an employee, provide the necessary documents for the project, and answer urgent questions. When a specialist works from home, they are not surrounded by a team and do not see that their work has a positive impact on the team and the company. They do not receive full feedback, so motivation and work efficiency may decrease (Odor, 2018). Without communication with the team, employees try to contact managers more often on minor issues: instead of writing one message in a chat, they call or write.
Therefore, it was decided to choose a different management style to prevent excessive workload on the head at McDonald’s. This way, the manager fully trusts their subordinates, consults with them on issues related to the company’s activities, uses constructive suggestions from employees, and engages them in setting specific goals (Buick and al., 2018). Responsibility is not shifted to subordinates based on the results of decisions taken. However, the manager has the opportunity not to deal with small tasks and can focus on global ones.
In addition, the key drivers for change are the development of new sales markets, the competitiveness of the company and its products, and effective work with personnel. A few decades ago, the key criterion for the success of fast-food restaurants was solely profit. Today, it still remains a priority goal. However, along with it, other equally important and significant goals are becoming increasingly important. It is obvious that in order to achieve these goals and effective management, the latest management technologies are needed (Nyamunda, 2022). They should not be based on material factors or financial levers. They should rely on innovative developments and scientific achievements, high professionalism of the personnel, new knowledge, and practical skills.
The management concept is a complex management technology that is used in a particular enterprise. With its help, the management of McDonald’s can change the working conditions of the staff. Currently, there are a large number of different management methods and technologies. The transition from a liberal to a democratic concept, in this case, was caused by such key drivers as the expansion of the staff by a new type of workers and the introduction of new technologies (Matthysen & Harris, 2018). The complexity of these measures is aimed at achieving the strategy set by the company to maintain competitiveness in the most efficient and economical way.
Key Stakeholders of Change
The main stakeholders behind the management change at McDonald’s are top managers, managers, and employees. Without changes within the company, external changes are also impossible, for example, a breakthrough in technology, becoming a market leader, and winning an honorable place in the list of successful and profitable firms (Grocholski, 2022). For a McDonald’s top manager of such a company, the situation of stability is stressful because they are used to acting in conditions of increased complexity. Work becomes boring, and they lack the opportunity to realize their personal and professional potential.
The manager has a crucial role in making changes in the organization. It is key in the implementation of changes, while it is possible to distinguish four main functions that it should perform (Higgins and al., 2019). These are setting goals for managers, tasks for performers, and monitoring their execution, as well as standardization of work, solving organizational and technical problems, receiving feedback, and training employees. The key to successful changes at any level and direction is a corresponding change in the people themselves involved in this process. The ability of a leader who translates and monitors the implementation of reforms to manage personnel in a new way will be no less important than a carefully designed program for implementing changes.
Finally, the important stakeholders of the changes are the employees of the McDonald’s chain themselves. Not all change projects in companies take root despite the fact that owners spend a large amount of time, money, and effort, then the changes can still be unsuccessful. One of the reasons for this situation is employees who may resist organizational changes (Ton & Reavis, 2017). The effectiveness of their implementation depends on how much McDonald’s workers will be willing to contribute to change.
Main Areas of Support to Planned Change
Employees can support the changes as they represent good career opportunities. As a result of innovations at McDonald’s, many new positions will appear, and promising employees will be able to move up the career ladder, freeing up space for younger colleagues. Moreover, the introduction of changes will create opportunities for learning and gaining valuable experience (Govaerts and al., 2019). Since McDonald’s is a large company, the organization has all the necessary resources for staff training, and appropriate plans and schedules for professional development are provided.
As part of the implementation of technological changes, employees will have the opportunity to participate in the implementation of a large-scale project to develop innovations and gain unique experience. Moreover, the new management style provides for a larger number of corporate events, which will also be supported by employees. Work experience in such a well-known company as McDonald’s will always be a significant advantage in the resume (Felce, 2019). Working in a well-known company using advanced technologies fills an employee with pride and gives them self-confidence (Arnaout & Esposito, 2018). Thus, maintaining and contributing to the prestige of the company can also serve as a reason to support the planned changes among employees.
Main Areas of Resistance to Planned Change
The social mood in any organization, even in a separate small group of people, is such that they are initially against any changes and transformations. To successfully overcome resistance to change at McDonald’s, managers first need to understand the reasons why employees do not want these changes. In this case, there are several main areas of resistance to change. Firstly, the introduction of new technologies causes uncertainty in people. McDonald’s employees will consciously or unconsciously express their negative attitude to the changes, resisting during their implementation, as they do not know what the consequences of these changes will be. In any changes, especially in the introduction of video surveillance for employees of the kitchen and cash register, they will suspect a threat to their security (Konlechner and al., 2018). Tracking the actions of employees is highly likely to be perceived negatively by them.
The ongoing changes include innovations in technology and technologies related to the organizational structure. In the end, they can lead to a violation of the established social relations in the organization and cause a decrease in the degree of satisfaction by employees with any need (Grocholski, 2022). Therefore, some McDonald’s employees may oppose a change in leadership style from liberal to democratic. Moreover, employees may become convinced that changes will not bring anything good. They may have a lack of confidence that changes are necessary or desirable for the organization. This will lead to the fact that employees may believe that the changes will not only not solve existing problems but also increase their number.
Managing Resistance to Change
For the ideal implementation of changes, it is necessary to take into account the possibility of social problems, since the following negative consequences for the organization’s personnel are inevitable. McDonald’s employees are likely to be dissatisfied with the social tension and social costs that have arisen (Felce, 2019). They will oppose the relocation of workers, the change in the content of labor, the development of a new system, and the strengthening of external control.
In order to avoid deterioration and destruction of relations between the highest and lowest staff level, a strategy should be developed when implementing changes in the organization. It will reduce the likelihood of a destructive conflict between both sides and maximize the chances of getting positive results. To do this, it is necessary to ensure clarity, certainty, and concreteness of proposals for changes. Moreover, managers of McDonald’s should be attentive to the problems and costs that may arise at the lower level in connection with changes (Sligo and al., 2019). They should demonstrate a clear willingness to solve problems together with the employees. Managers of McDonald’s should help the staff of the lower level in understanding the benefits of reaching an agreement. For example, this may include improving reputation and business ties or reducing private problems to problems of a more general nature (Nyamunda, 2022). It is also necessary to clarify to employees the consequences of the lack of compromise.
Effective Management of Change
Since McDonald’s is a large company experienced in implementing changes, the change process was managed great in terms of the issues that surrounded knowledge management. Knowledge is the information acquired by employees and the experience they have gained (Evans & Farrell, 2022). It is the knowledge that is a prerequisite for an employee to occupy a certain position within the organization after changes are made since they must be applied in the process of fulfilling official duties.
For effective communication within the organization aimed at implementing changes, specialists needed general knowledge. General knowledge is the knowledge obtained on the basis of equally interpreted and equally used information by all employees (Jacobs & Pretorius, 2020). The minimum allowable level of knowledge of McDonald’s employees was successfully achieved. Due to this level, employees could effectively perform their official duties, interacting with colleagues and information systems of the organization. The basis of knowledge management in the process of implementing changes at McDonald’s was the idea of regular use of knowledge by employees of the organization.
Regular use of knowledge was achieved through the use of situational modeling technology. The technology of situational modeling contained scenarios for the application of knowledge. Each use case, in turn, modeled a practical situation in which an employee was faced with the need to apply knowledge to resolve the situation described in the scenario (Grocholski, 2022). During the daily knowledge training, employees solved several use cases. The result of each use case solution was saved. The statistics of the results ultimately showed that the level of knowledge of McDonald’s employees was increasing.
Knowledge tracking as a result of the introduced changes was also carried out by McDonald’s successfully. This purposeful, systematic measurement of the skills of employees ensured the effectiveness of professional activity was performed timely. The value of tracking was that taking measurements for a certain period of time allowed us to study the current state of the personnel and predict changes (Malmelin & Virta, 2021). If necessary, the results of tracking were the basis for the implementation of preventive measures by managers and staff of personnel services. During the knowledge track, both individual employees and the McDonald’s service team as a whole were measured.
The purpose of knowledge tracking was to assess the ability and readiness of the organization’s employees to solve official tasks. During the tracking, the level of knowledge of employees of different levels was studied, and the results were described in the criteria of high, medium, and low readiness to solve tasks within the framework of the implemented changes (Mansaray, 2019). All the main tasks of knowledge tracking were completed (Govaerts and al., 2019). Among them was an assessment of the level of theoretical training of employees in current conditions. The prospects of professional activity of employees were also successfully predicted. This data was used in the implementation of new tasks in compliance with the conditions of their implementation and interaction with other employees. When tracking knowledge, the influence of employees’ knowledge on the effectiveness of their activities was successfully investigated.
Economic globalization and technological modernization of McDonald’s, as well as the innovative way of management development in the organization of the country’s economy, require new approaches to working with knowledge. The term knowledge economy refers to the highest stage of the innovation economy, the main factor in the development of which is human capital (Higgins and al., 2019). The introduction of changes, namely the use of new and qualitatively different technologies in McDonald’s, opened up new opportunities for development and also required changes to the very essence of the process. Without the successful application of the knowledge migration carried out by McDonald’s, in turn, it would have been impossible to introduce changes.
Human capital, on which the knowledge economy is based, has become one of the key productive factors in creating the latest technologies and developing and improving the efficiency of McDonald’s. The influx of technical specialists into the organization has led to an increase in investment in human capital (Grocholski, 2022). Due to this factor, it became possible to create new technologies capable of ensuring McDonald’s industry leadership on a global scale. The organization was influenced by global trends and changes. The most significant characteristics of these changes are the integrating processes of globalization, as well as the increasing role of knowledge as one of the growth drivers that creates the investment attractiveness of the organization (Arnaout & Esposito, 2018). Systematic accumulation of knowledge migration in the context of globalization has become one of the main factors in the development of McDonald’s, as well as a competitive advantage over other fast-food restaurants.
Evaluation of Change Management
Implementing changes in such a large company as McDonald’s is a complex process that requires compliance with management principles. An attempt to weaken control over the knowledge management, tracking, or migration processes creates the illusion of rapid changes. However, they are usually short-term and do not lead to the desired result (Choromides, 2021). In the absence of knowledge, employees will not contribute to reforms, and efforts to implement changes will be fruitless. It was very important to involve McDonald’s employees in the process of gaining knowledge, to interest them, and make them complicit in the changes. Therefore, it was crucial to creating an atmosphere of urgency.
At the implementation stage, the current level of knowledge, advantages, and risks of individual groups of employees and trends in the development of the economic situation were analyzed. It was at this stage of the implementation process that McDonald’s held a strategic planning session in order to assess the current position of the company in the market to convey financial results to employees (Andreasen & Gammelgaard, 2018). The managers identified the complexities of interactions between departments and worked out the direction of actions and development of McDonald’s regarding knowledge management for the short term.
The strategic session as a team management tool helped to unite the efforts of employees and smooth out differences for a more successful knowledge migration (Ton & Reavis, 2017). During the new management style, the daily implementation of processes and knowledge indicators was monitored. Transformations required the creation of new systems and processes, and for this, it was necessary to successfully run the knowledge tracking and migration. It was pulled up during the implementation of the changes with the help of effective knowledge management.
One of the important outcomes achieved by McDonald’s as a result of the changes is the building of the current knowledge management system. It includes a holistic approach to the search, collection, evaluation, restoration, and dissemination of all information assets of the organization (Matthysen & Harris, 2018). These are databases, documents, policies, procedures, as well as the knowledge and experience of individual employees. Thus, the migration of the entire baggage of knowledge that the organization has successfully occurred.
Today, it is the knowledge of McDonald’s employees that is the most important resource in the face of the uncertainty of the external environment, growing competition, and limited funds. In order to make optimal decisions in a timely manner in a rapidly changing market, it is vital not only to have but also to use wisely all the knowledge accumulated in the organization (Buick and al., 2018). In this regard, an important outcome is that tracking knowledge is used as a key factor for determining the company’s development strategy and effective solution to organizational tasks.
Knowledge management in an organization is presented as a continuous process of creating, accumulating, and applying a body of knowledge. Systematic work on the use of accumulated collective experience and knowledge has been turned into intellectual capital, thereby providing an additional competitive advantage for McDonald’s (Konlechner and al., 2018). As a result of the achieved outcomes, the organization has a knowledge migration system. In this regard, management decision-making is facilitated due to sufficient awareness and the use of accumulated experience and knowledge that meet the competencies necessary to solve new tasks.
In implementing the changes, McDonald’s used the organizational change model proposed by Kurt Levin and the research-action model that helps senior managers to diagnose and plan change in their organization. Despite numerous differences, these models have similar features. In particular, both of them involve careful strategy planning before implementing changes (Odor, 2018). Both Kurt Levin’s three-step model and the research-action model have a similar procedure for assessing opportunities and threats that may entail planned changes.
In both models, it is necessary to predict reactions to changes. McDonald’s leaders needed to understand which of the employees would become supporters of the planned reforms and who could become opponents (Ton & Reavis, 2017). Both models proposed to do this by evaluating the profitability of changes for employees. It was important to assess the most likely balance of forces in the group: who could be more loyal to the changes or opponents.
In order for the changes to go well, both models necessarily included a point for properly informing employees, especially those who, according to the assumptions of the leader, could be against. It was recommended to think in advance about how to remove the employees’ negativity (Jacobs & Pretorius, 2020). In both cases, the McDonald’s leaders had to refer to the use of both an oral format and a written one to inform the staff about the changes. Both the model of organizational change proposed by Kurt Levin and the research-action model have the final point of analyzing the effectiveness of changes. It was necessary to think over the evaluation criteria and ways to get feedback from McDonald’s employees in both cases.
The main differences are that Kurt Levin’s model has a more practical focus than the first step is creating a need for change and minimizing resistance to change. However, unlike the research–action model, practical steps are being taken at this stage, not theoretical ones (Konlechner and al., 2018). After receiving the result and evaluating it, it is necessary to carry out constructive modifications, and not only fixing theoretical data, as in the research–action model.
Unlike the model proposed by Kurt Levin, the research–action model is a process of making changes based on obtaining data as a result of research and has a greater emphasis on theory. They were carried out in a certain cyclic sequence (Felce, 2019). This step-by-step process is based on the close cooperation of the organization’s management and external McDonald’s consultants specializing in organizational development. In this process, the emphasis was on conducting research (data collection and analysis) before changes were planned and implemented. Emphasis was also placed on a thorough analysis and evaluation of the results of the actions taken.
Role in Supporting Success
In order to maintain the success achieved in the implementation of change, the company must respond quickly to the slightest change in the external environment. It is necessary to make constant changes necessary for survival in a particular environment. To maintain the results obtained, the manager of McDonald’s must have the skills and ability to make continuous improvements in the quality of goods and services in internal processes, as well as to increase customer satisfaction. On the other hand, the leader must be able to react to changes in the external environment and do it quickly (Higgins and al., 2019). Managers should be able to design such organizations and manage them so that they are in a state of constant change at many levels.
In this way, it will be possible to balance the constantly occurring changes in the field of technology and support large one-time changes in the management style at another level. To maintain the success of change, it is necessary to adhere to the tactics of the ability to achieve two types of change. One of them is evolution, i.e., the improvement of existing changes, and the other is a revolution, i.e., the implementation of a breakthrough, the introduction of changes that have not been carried out before. McDonald’s is a successful company because its management is able to clearly distinguish between revolutionary and evolutionary changes (Sligo and al., 2019). The leaders of the organization resort to them in the organizational environment and accurately allocate the various resources needed for supporting changes with their help.
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