They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day. And with a sudden turnaround in the fourth quarter, McDonald’s can’t help but agree.
In October, McDonald’s announced it would finally be selling all-day breakfast, feeding both people and its profits.
“Finally” because consumers have been demanding breakfast after 10:30 a.m. pretty much since the inception of the McMuffin.
“This is the consumers’ idea. This is what they want us to do,” McDonald’s president Michael Andres told the Wall Street Journal (via Slate).
“That’s why I think this could be the catalyst for our turnaround.”
Call Andres a prophet for profit because it certainly was a turnaround. McDonald’s had been suffering losses since 2013. In fact, it suffered a huge decline in 2014 when its stock took a loss of 3.3 percent, reports CNN Money.
Today, a survey by market researchers NDP found that the move to offer all-day breakfast was “luring in new and lapsed customers,” according to the Wall Street Journal. Thanks to these new and old customers, sales have soared at McD’s, rising 5.7 percent by the end of 2015.
Why did McDonald’s hesitate so long? It’s possible that the restaurant chain feared breakfast menu would cannibalize sales from its more expensive lunch and dinner items. Burgers, on average, are pricier than breakfast menu items.
However, what McDonald’s did not achieve—up until now—was completely satisfying their customers. Listening to customer demand almost certainly brought back loyal patrons, but also attracted a new type of client—the all-day breakfast diner-type.
It’s a reminder to law firms not only to listen to their clients, but to consider the idea of encouraging a boost of smaller sales in the grand scheme of the bottom line.
Although low-yield clients may not seem like the most efficient way to earn profits, they can get you through the tough times. Think about taking on additional, smaller clients while business is slow instead of waiting for that shark-sized bite of a case. Like a line out the door at McD’s, keeping busy sends a positive signal to both associates and clients alike that your attorneys are practiced, experienced, and in-demand. This then raises your appeal to higher-paying customers.
An increased average revenue may be due to volume, not quality of case matter, but—in the end—does that matter? You may find that an uptick in small cases keeps your legal assistants busier, not your high-billing attorneys.
Support staff are often able to handle discovery, transform case management, and play a critical role in assisting attorneys. Moving forward may mean carving a new future for legal secretaries, technology, and management—to the advantage of all.
Take a tip from McDonald’s menu to increase your bottom line (and probably your belt).
Looking for more ideas to grow profits?
Take The Center for Competitive Management’s audio course online, “The Productive, Profitable Law Firm: How Agile & Lean Practices Can Reduce Costs, Increase Quality and Grow Profits,” on Thursday, February 11, 2016 from 2:00 p.m. Eastern to 3:15 p.m. Eastern.
Savvy firms are implementing Lean/Agile methodologies to reduce costs, improve quality and speed turnaround time for legal matters. In order for your law firm to start building a profitable, scalable business, you need to understand and get a handle on its systems and processes.
During this power-packed webinar, you’ll get step-by-step instructions for improving legal processes through systematic identification of workflow inefficiencies; prioritization of process improvements, and elimination of process inefficiencies.
In addition to real life examples of how firms have used Lean/Agile methodologies to improve efficiency, you’ll learn how to:
- Identify and analyze your firm’s processes, and make incremental process improvements that can improve your bottom line
- Develop methods to complete routine tasks quickly
- Identify the bottlenecks that cause delays
- Use ‘Increments’ and ‘iterations’ for improved legal productivity
- Identify Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that your firm should be examining (beyond billable hours)