advice on how to build meaningful brands

November 14, 2019

71 | How McDonalds’ manages to be one of the world’s most valuable brands. Part 2 – with Usman Tahir Jutt

Why you’ve got to listen to this episode:

In the previous episode, part 1 of this series, we learned about Usman’s story. His family history and the early business failure he experienced, gave him the experience he needed to become a successful businessperson and clarified his vision for the future.

In this episode we hear why, being able to choose any brand to work with, and after scouring the globe, Usman selected McDonald’s as the brand who best fit his criteria of working with a well-established framework, being able to financially scale his investment and of doing good for the communities he would be in.

How does McDonald’s who regularly receives harsh criticism fits Usman criteria of doing good you ask?  Well, you have to listen to find out.

In this episode, Usman also shares with us in detail what is the selection and training process like for a potential MacDonald’s owner and operator. This is a gruelling process by which McDonald’s is able to select the right people to represent the brand. McDonald’s train them in how to become successful operator and immerses them in the McDonald’s brand.

Who can benefit from listening in:

McDonald’s is massive and most brands can’t train or immerse staff quite the same way, but there are lessons we can take from how McDonald’s does it and implement our own versions of it.

One of the best ways to learn how a brand attracts, selects and trains are to hear from someone who went through it. In 2013, Usman became the youngest owner and operator in McDonald’s Canada. After becoming a successful businessman, Usman went through a long and gruelling induction into MacDonald’s that involved mopping floors and cleaning toilets, amongst other things.

This process may sound odd, or unnecessary, particularly for an already successful businessperson, but this is McDonald’s brand secret sauce. It is how McDonald’s ensure its brand consistency.

Key takeaways from this episode:

  • The only way to protect your brand is to ensure you select the right people to represent it.
  • The best way to train someone on the brand is to have them experience it.
  • A brand can only remain relevant if it is consistently evolving to meet consumer changing needs.
  • A successful brand is always actively engaged in listening to criticism and willing to change.
  • With success comes responsibility. Brands, particularly ones of the scale of McDonald’s, have the responsibility to address problems in a sustainable way and not at the cost of suppliers alone.

Links to resources mentioned in this episode



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