The Seven Habits for Attractions Leadership: Begin with the End in Mind

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Habit Two: Begin with the End in Mind

Over the weekend, I watched a movie that ties in perfectly with this week's topic: Begin with the End in Mind. The Founder documents the true story of Ray Krok, founder of the McDonald's Corporation.

Begin with the End in Mind.

Ray Krok began his journey with the end in mind. He set out to be a successful businessman and he never lost sight of that goal. Although Krok knew where he wanted to end up, he didn't always know which road to take to get there. Ray hit roadblock after roadblock but ultimately found the way to his goal. As a result, Ray Krok transformed a single hamburger stand in San Bernardino, California, into the most successful franchise operation of all time. Today, the name McDonald's is a household name.

Stick to Your Standards.

At one point, Krok visits one of his new franchise locations unannounced. While McDonald's franchises at the time were focused on selling burgers and shakes, this franchisee was advertising fried chicken. Krok was enraged but had no way of legally enforcing corporate standards on McDonald's franchisees. As a result, his franchisees could agree to follow standards at the outset while doing what they liked once they began operating.

Over time, Krok learns that he must enter the real estate business if he ever hopes to enforce his brand standards. As the landlord of the franchise, Krok can set specific corporate standards and values as a condition of the lease. Consequently, franchisees must adhere to the standards to operate. Violate the terms of the lease--which include McDonald's Corporate Service Standards--and a franchisee can lose their lease. Finally, Krok's vision for service, quality, consistency, and cleanliness can be easily enforced.

Hire People Who Will Ensure Your Vision.

To be successful, Ray Krok developed a set of principles that helped him to achieve his goals and realize his vision. He passionately believed in adhering to brand standards but he knew that he couldn’t do it alone. He needed like-minded people who shared in the dream of being small-business owners themselves. As a result, he began hiring married couples as franchise owners because and teaching them how to carry out the McDonald’s operating standards and values. In fact, all McDonald's employees must sign off on the corporation's Standards of Business Conduct: The Promise of the Golden Arches every year. Consequently, Ray Krok's legacy, The McDonald's Corporation, continues to be the most successful franchise corporation in history.

"The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing."