Excerpts From "Standing Up & Standing Out"

INTRODUCTION

This book is my story, but it is also the story of how one of America's largest and most successful corporations changed itself from the inside and for the better. I was a witness to and a participant in the change. From that dreadful day in April, 1968, my future was wedded to the McDonald's Corporation and its growth.

I didn't really think of myself as a pioneer. But like the handful of African-American men who preceded me in the company and mentored me as my job became a career, I was heading straight into uncharted territory.

The civil rights movement, personified by Dr. King, had challenged the nation's long history of moral blindness to its black citizens. A lot of progress was being made in attaining legal equality, but changing hearts and minds was another matter. The business sector lagged far behind the lawmakers—often from blatant racist (and sexist) motives but also because the traditional all-white, all-male power structure of American business wasn't convinced that it needed to do anything different. For the most part, private businesses, including the country's largest and most profitable corporations, considered themselves immune to integration, especially at the management level, where negative stereotyping of people of color and women abounded.

There were exceptions. Some far-sighted executives—including Ray Kroc, founder of the McDonald's Corporation—sensed the way the country was moving and knew that the time had come for a new kind of thinking. To continue to ignore the newly united and therefore economically significant African American market, which comprised one-tenth of the national population back then, would sooner or later be bad for business.

TABLE OF CONTENTS  
Acknowledgements i
Foreword by R. Lee Dunham vi
Introduction ix
Chapter 1 Almost Everything You Need to Know 1
Chapter 2 The Business of Learning 23
Chapter 3 Mapping Out a New Course 39
Chapter 4 The Bottom Line Is Service 56
Chapter 5 Out of the Frying Pan and Into the Fire 80
Chapter 6 Moving Up the Ladder 105
Chapter 7 Turning New Corners 154
Chapter 8 Keeping Good Company 181
Chapter 9 Step Up, Step Back, Step Aside? 219
Chapter 10 Taking It Nationwide 249
Chapter 11 Bringing the Lessons Home 287
Chapter 12 Expansion on the Front Burner 334
Chapter 13 Still Making Waves 355
Epilogue   380

Read excerpts

  1. Introduction
  2. A Crisis and Unexpected Opportunities
  3. My First Speech to Franchisees
  4. Was Ray Kroc a Racist?
  5. Judgements
  6. My Principles of Standing Up
    And Standing Out

 

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