A lot has been said about Burger King’s suggestion to McDonald’s to create the McWhopper as a sign of peace and to raise awareness and money for World Peace Day this year. Here’s a great article from Inc.com…read the comments and you’ll get an even fuller picture of the commentary flying around on this.
Regardless of whether you believe this to be a tasteless PR stunt from Burger King, or whether you think McD’s blew their response, we couldn’t help but see the Entrepreneurship (or lack of) in this social media field-day.
In the battle of which company is more entrepreneurial, BK wins this one, hands down.
We’re not condoning purposeful PR stunts to set up your competitor to fail, but we also believe that people, for the most part, have good intentions. So, bear with us for a few minutes here to find a few lessons about the entrepreneurial mindset at work in a large corporation:
Entrepreneurs take risks. Sometimes the risks pay off, and other times they don’t. Despite any naysayers, for the most part, this was a smart risk that has already had a strong ROI for BK. Even if McD’s attempts to recover, BK has already won the approval of a good portion of the fast food consumer base. In contrast, McD’s didn’t lean into what could have been a smart risk to take BK up on their offer, or suggest a tangible alternative.
Entrepreneurs make connections and look for opportunity. BK saw lots of connections and opportunity here. Assuming integrity in their intention, they saw what could have been a beautiful opportunity to create a connection between their biggest competitor and a cause that, globally, is relevant and meaningful to many. McD’s seems to have missed the opportunity here, and responded by trying to shut the opportunity down, and overlooked the sentiment of folks around the world who want to see big companies partnering more to address global issues.
Entrepreneurs are hungry. (Humble + energy = hungry) Forgive the pun here, but the best entrepreneurs we’ve seen are humble and energetic enough to never stop working to build their business. Not to rest on their success, but to recognize that building and maintaining a business requires energy and fresh thinking every day. Perhaps the biggest blunder for McDs was casting a perception of a lack of humility — flexing their muscle as the big company instead.
Clearly, the entrepreneurial spirit is alive at BK — humble, energetic folks who made connections, saw opportunities and took a risk. Well done.
Photo licensed under Creative Commons 2.0 via Flickr user: plenty.r.
The Garage Group helps corporate teams and brands innovate and grow like startups with entrepreneurial approaches to strategy, brand architecture, idea generation, and insight discovery.