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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Post# 242 - McDonalds and Their Policy on Messed Up Orders

I sent this letter on 6/17/2011, after a lousy experience:

Dear McDonald’s,
Here’s the deal.  Last Sunday, I took my family through your drive-thru.  My son and daughter ordered your Chicken McNugget Happy Meals.  I ordered some other food, and a Chocolate Banana Milkshake.   I drove home, approximately 12 minutes, factoring trains and elderly people coming home from church.
When we arrived, I noticed something.  I had no straw.  On the hierarchy of needs pyramid, a person with a milkshake really needs a straw above all else.  At the same time, my son opened his McNuggets, only to find something grotesque and horrific.  It was a slimy, greasy blob with little pickle pieces for eyes.  Mind you, we’re trying to wean him onto other, more conventional foods.  A McNugget container full of Thousand Island-looking goop wasn’t a step in the right direction.  We lost ground that day.
We piled back in the car and headed back to your restaurant, where we waited in line, food in hand, behind (I swear) the most picky, custom-ordery customer I’ve ever seen.  I’ve never heard so many “minus this’s” and “plus that’s” in my life.  When it was our turn, I asked the cashier for a manager.  She obliged.
The manager arrived a few moments later and politely asked how she could help us.  I explained that I had no straw, and asked for another shake since mine was a bit melty by now.  Then, I showed her the McNugget container.  She explained that someone ordered extra Big Mac Sauce.  Who orders extra Big Mac sauce?
The Manager then proceeded to give my son another Happy Meal (McNuggets, Fries, and same toy he just received), and a replacement shake.  I accepted this.  I didn’t complain. 
On the way home, in the back of my mind, I thought to myself, “now there’s a half hour I’ll never get back. “  It put me behind schedule in driving out to my brother’s house.  It made me have to rush.  And in the end, what did we really get?  Exactly what we ordered in the first place.
What’s your policy when people have a mis-delivered order?  Just give them what they ordered?  It’s supposed to be fast food.  Food that is fast.  It seems to me, for the inconvenience, lost time, extra gas and mileage, and added hunger, there should be more.  That’s just me, and how I’d handle it.  If employees saw their boss handing out $5 or $10 gift cards every time they messed up, things might shape up quickly.
Just a thought.
Date: Wed, 6 Jul 2011 00:18:23 -0400

Dear McDonald's,

I submitted the letter below on your website, on June 17th.  It's been three-or-so weeks, so I thought I would follow up. Can you answer my question?



Subject: RE:
Date: Sun, 17 Jul 2011 23:04:39 -0400

Dear McDonald's,

It's been almost a month, and this is my third note.  I really don't understand the mentality of not answering a legitimate question about your policies.  Is it too, too personal?  Or worse, do you actually have no "set-in-stone" policy? 

Here's the deal, Punky Brewsters.  If a person orders items A, B and C, and ends up with A, B and Big Mac Sauce, they're going to be upset.  Upset for two reasons.  First, because they received the wrong thing, and this is easily resolved with the replacement of that item.  But second, and more important, is the amount of time--precious time that could be spent with family, or in worship, or doing exercise, or meditating, or nursing a wounded puppy back to health.  It doesn't really matter what the thing is that I'm missing out on--the point is, you robbed me of that thing.  And at some point, I'd almost rather go hungry than flush a half hour of my weekend, the very thing that I work all week to get to, driving back and forth to McDonalds to solve your problem, a problem that could have easily been solved by a little scrutiny, or a clear frigging container for someone's disgusting personal vat of Big Mac Sauce.  And by the way, who would think to order extra Big Mac Sauce?  Subsequently, my son, still disgusted by the sight of that Big Mac Sauce, referred to his diarhea as having consistency of that sauce.  It's pretty safe to say, he won't be ordering a Big Mac anytime soon.

And yes, I suppose I could have pulled over, out of the drive through, to carefully check my items.  Then, I would have only had to park my car, bring my son into your store, wait in line because no one really knows I've already paid and everyone's focused on normal business.  I could have waited the ten minutes and saved 20 minutes.  Shame on me for trusting your staff.  My bad.

And then, to add insult to injury, you can't even grant me the courtesy of responding to my note questioning your policies?


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