10 daring thinkers who defied the rules

Skye Anderson, CFO McDonald’s Australia

8 / 10

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8. Serving fast decisions

Skye Anderson
CFO McDonald’s Australia

The simple act of seating all members of the McDonald’s Australia executive team together has had a huge impact on outcomes, says the company’s chief financial officer Skye Anderson.

“The CEO sat in the loneliest part of the office … now those of us responsible for innovation and driving the business forward, we all sit together every day,” says Anderson.

“We have fluid conversations and we’re making quick decisions.”

McDonald’s Australia is a A$5 billion business that serves 1.7 million customers every day, employs 100,000 people and pays A$1 billion to its 9000 suppliers across Australia each year. In recognising that it had to become more nimble, the company now includes “prioritising progress over perfection” and “striving to simplify” among its core operating principles. 

Anderson says that letting go of the need for perfection was a “scary concept” for the finance team.

“We are so motivated about getting it right, but we have to learn how to fail. We have to give permission  to the teams to innovate, invest, trial and fail.”

Similarly, simplifying decision-making means McDonald’s is now quicker to market than it has ever been. This concept extends to restaurants, too – a more simplified operating environment means staff can focus more on customers, which is the business’s main priority.