Monday, January 25, 2010

McDonald's Dirty Trick

I had to catch a 6:20 a.m. flight to Orlando this morning, which meant I was in the airport around 5:30 a.m., looking for a place to grab breakfast. My choice was McDonald's or... um... well... nothing.

McDonald's was the only restaurant that was open. None of the others looked close to opening. I doubted any would open before 6:30 a.m. at the earliest, leaving McDonald's with a competition free hour.

What a dirty trick by Mickey D, staying open longer hours than the competition!

Given the length of the line in front of McDonald's, I suspect any other restaurant would peel off one third of McDonald's customers based on the line alone. The restaurant owners/managers don't even know how much business they're missing by not opening an hour or two earlier.

A lack of operating hours does not only affect airport fast food. It also impacts service contractors who do not want to stay open an hour or two later or who seek to avoid Saturday service. Like the closed fast food restaurants, they have no idea how much business they're losing.

If a homeowner loses a water heater Friday evening, calls your company and gets an answering machine, do you really think he's going to wait until you get around to calling him back sometime on Monday?

Some service contractors make a conscious decision to shut down at 5:00 p.m. and on the weekend. This is okay if the company has plenty of business during normal operating hours and can accept losing emergency service. However, contractors who complain about a lack of business while limiting hours can only blame the guy in the mirror.

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