彭蒙惠英语：20110217 MP3在线课程 Super-Style Me!
by Ben Paynter / (c) 2010, Mansueto Ventures LLC, as first publicshed in Fast Company Magazine. Distributed by Tribune Media Services.
Inside the $2.4 billion plan to change the way you think about the most iconic restaurant on the planet
For lunch, Denis Weil chills out in the contemporary lounge he created. Weil spritzes a lime over his salad. "I love this salad, it's so cravable," he coos in a slight European accent.
His contemporary lounge sits smack in the middle of a newly revamped McDonald's in Oak Brook, Illinois. Yes, McDonald's. Weil, McDonald's VP of concept and design, has spent the past five years educating a host of executives and franchisees throughout the $23 billion company that a McDonald's restaurant doesn't have to mean primary colors and fiberglass booths.
"It's a community center," says Weil of the restaurant, meaning McDonald's is one of the few places cheap and casual enough to be accessible to nearly everyone. The restaurant in Oak Brook has been divided into four "seating zones," each designed for a different activity─chilling out, working, casual dining and group events.
McDonald's grown-up thinking about design is part of its "Plan to Win" growth strategy, initiated in 2003 when executives realized their core markets had gorged on expansion. From 1974 to 2003, the company supersized to more than 30,000 storefronts in 100-plus countries, each one basically a facsimile of the one before it.
The strategy's three pillars are menu innovation, store renovation and an upgrade of the ordering experience.
The next phase, McDonald's execs say, depends on design. "People eat with their eyes first," says president and COO Don Thompson. "If you have a restaurant that is appealing, contemporary and relevant both from the street and interior, the food tastes better."
"As the younger generation starts to see McDonald's as a place you go to eat instead of just picking up food, you could very well change their behavior for years to come," says Darren Tristano of restaurant consultancy Technomic. "The next step," he says, "is to draw people in for a dining experience."