McDonald's corporate ladder has only low rungs
Contrary to CEO Don Thompson's claim, entry-level fast-food workers have just about no chance to move up.
McDonald's (MCD) chief executive Don Thompson thinks so, telling Bloomberg his company has "always been an above-minimum-wage employer" and arguing that 40% of McDonald's executives started out as hourly employees. Critics who have already noted that his company's online budgeting tool for employees leaves out items like food and clothing were quick to disagree.
According to a new study by the National Employment Law Project, a fry shoveler or drive-though window cashier has little to no opportunity to climb the fast-food industry's corporate ladder. Fewer than 2% of industry jobs are held by the executives Thompson used as examples.
Instead, nearly 90% of all fast-food jobs belong to cooks, cashiers, delivery workers and other nonmanagerial workers. By comparison, 31% of jobs in other U.S. industries are above entry level. As NELP pointed out to The Huffington Post, front-line fast-food jobs pay a median hourly wage of $8.94 and workers stay in those positions for years at a time with scant opportunity for advancement.
The industry is also set up in such a way that someone working the fryers could just about never rise into the upper echelons of the industry. McDonald's has one franchise owner per 293 employees. Yum Brands' (YUM) Taco Bell and KFC require their franchise owners to have a net worth of $1.5 million and liquid assets totaling up to $750,000.
It doesn't get easier when the same fast-food establishments keep pulling the ladder out from under their entry-level employees. White Castle just joined a parade of fast-food chains planning to hire only part-time workers in order to duck the effects of the Affordable Care Act. Other chains are cutting back workers' hours, reducing their benefits or firing them.
McDonald's may be "providing opportunity," as Thompson says, but his claim that the company is helping employees "rise through the system and gain greater and greater wealth" looks a bit supersized.
I was a manager in the manufacturing industry some years ago. When hiring new employees, the ones who had worked for McDonalds, or other fast-food restaurants, for 6 months or longer never failed to become my best employees, who continually grew to earn higher and higher salaries. An entry-level job is just that: an entry into the workforce. The employee then has the opportunity to work his/her way up the employment ladder, either within the company or by an advance into another company.
Entry-level jobs are highly valuable for introducing low-skilled people into the workforce. Those who will actually work and learn have virtually no limit to the career advancement they can enjoy.
That's their (McDonald's') choice. It's a private business. What is the aim of these articles? Is it to foment anti-private enterprise sentiment? Is it to push for legislation of what private industry may or may not do within their own companies? Is the author pushing for government (The Collective) ownership of all things to the utter elimination of private property rights and privacy?
A better idea is to vote with one's wallet. Simply, don't eat there or give them your business if you disagree with how they do things. An American citizen is an independent merchant and contractor. We each have an ability to reach an accord with a prospective employer, or to start our own enterprise. If a person is not happy with the relationship, based on pay or otherwise, that person ought to consider that they are equally responsible for reaching and agreeing to that accord. It's not like the employer is holding them "captive". The individual's own circumstances may be holding them captive, but the employer is not -- not today.
duh! most of the entry level jobs hardly require a GED! many of the entry level people don't even speak english! play
the numbers game and you'll see the stats you list - and results you allude to - are meaningless for a business plan based on low end labor!
if you HAVE a brain, you can grow in any company.
if your goal in life is to flip burgers - then you reached it upon entry in McDonalds!
the key statement is that "40% of McDonald's executives started out as hourly employees." that says enough. there IS growth potential for those who want it.
What a useless article. . .
You want to move up? It's simple, be better than the employee next to you. Come in early, stay late, stop starring at the clock wondering if you can get paid 8 hours and only work 7.
I never see articles from MSN about how to get ahead. Is it because it is a lost art, or is it because the truth would upset the masses? Just because you show up to work does not ENTITLE you to better wages or frequent promotions.
It's sad so many of the young spew the right wing party line because being too young to remember history they also apparently never read of it. They argue that minimum wage is a training wage not designed as a career yet ignore that at companies like Walmart probably half of their workers are over 40 and worked there for years for little more than minimum wage. Over 30% & almost all retail jobs pay only slightly better than minimum wage.
I remember when I began working some 50 years ago when only teenagers made anywhere close to minimum wage. Few companies would insult an adult with such an offer. Grocery clerks & cashiers made 3 or more times the $1.25 minimum. At that time CEO's made an average of about 20 times what their average worker made, today it's 400 times. You educated or with a skill that make $20 to $25 an hour feel superior and feel comfortable suggesting 30% of Americans should work for close to minimum wage but aren't intelligent enough to realize had America maintained it's course those Walmart workers would be making what you do and you'd be making twice as much or more than you do today. Today many think it perfectly reasonable that the owner of a single store should profit 5-10 million a year while paying minimum wage. 40 years ago that wouldn't happen.
Realize this, if minimum wage were ended as many suggest and some jobs paid $3 or $4 an hour your pay would likely drop as well as pay is usually provided in steps. As in past history we'll reach a point that too many millions working full time jobs living in abject poverty will refuse to accept it. Unions will return as will strikes and violence until those very wealthy few at the top realize they can't continue to get away with this forever any more than the robber barons of the past.
SO A S SUCH, THE PERSON THAT GETS PROMOTED IS THE BEST **** KISSER
NOT THE MOST QUALIFIED PERSON FOR THE JOB.I WORKED WITH SOME PRETTY POOR SUPERVISORS THAT SHOULD HAVE STAYED GRUNT WORKERS!!!! SUCH IS LIFE
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