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Wendy's Hamburgers

Volume 11: Kathrin Thanner (2008): Dave Thomas and Wendy's Hamburgers: Columbus, Ohio and America's "Other" Hamburger Empire

Heartland 11 / WVT 2008

ISBN 978-3-86821-094-1

€ 24,00 • $ 32,00

 

This thesis focuses on Wendy's International Inc., one of the world's leading fast food companies. By studying food and business issues within the wider context of U.S. culture, the hamburger empire will be examined from more of a cultural viewpoint than a business one.

This cultural study also provides background information about Wendy's founder Dave Thomas and the chain's first restaurant in Columbus, Ohio. The main part will examine Wendy's formula for success, taking into consideration its corporate logo, philosophy, people, products and profits, advertising history and its global impact since the corporate founding in 1969.

Wendy's International Inc. will also be approached from the customer's perspective, presenting a market research study and survey results.

This thesis concludes with a glossary of the most relevant terms in the fast food industry.

235 pp., 104 fig.

 

 

 

Table of Contents

 

0 GENERAL PURPOSES AND OVERVIEW   4

 

1 RESEARCH METHODS TO EXPLORE A CULTURAL TOPIC 6

1.1 OUTLINING CULTURAL STUDIES RESEARCH  6

1.1.1 FreeMind  7

1.1.2 Complete Outline  9

1.2 CONDUCTING CULTURAL RESEARCH  12

1.2.1 Web Search Engines  12

1.2.2 Image and Video Search Engines  14

1.3 ORGANIZING AND EDITING RESEARCH RESULTS  16

1.3.1 Web Research Professional  16

1.3.2 Google Maps  19

1.4 OPTIMIZING RESEARCH RESULTS  21

1.4.1 Wendy’s International Inc. 21

1.4.2 Consumer Experience  23

 

2 UNDERLYING ECONOMIC AND CULTURAL PRINCIPLES 24

2.1 FUNDAMENTALS OF BUSINESS  24

2.1.1 Marketing  24

2.1.2 Franchising  28

2.1.3 Globalization  31

2.2 OBSERVATIONS ABOUT CULTURE  33

2.2.1 U.S. Dining Culture  34

2.2.2 U.S. Fast Food Chains  38

2.2.3 The Side Effects of Fast Food  43

 

3 WENDY’S AND ITS ROOTS  46

3.1 FOUNDER R. DAVID THOMAS – THE PERSON BEHIND THE BUSINESS  46

3.1.1 Made for the Restaurant Business – Early Years  46

3.1.2 Gaining First Work Experience 49

3.1.3 Relating Military Service and the Restaurant Business  52

3.1.4 Making the American Dream Come True – From Rags to Riches in 35 Years 55

3.2 STARTING THE HAMBURGER BUSINESS IN 1969  57

3.2.1 Wendy’s Old Fashioned Hamburgers – The Beginnings of a Family Business 58

3.2.2 Columbus, Ohio – the Cradle of Wendy’s Success  60

 

4 WENDY’S – AMERICA’S “OTHER” HAMBURGER EMPIRE 63

4.1 “COMPETING THE WENDY’S WAY”  63

4.1.1 Wendy’s Philosophy Reflected by Its Logo  64

4.1.2 Introduction to Wendy’s Operating System 66

4.2 WENDY’S FAMILY  68

4.2.1 What makes Wendy’s Winning Leader 70

4.2.2 The Relationship between Franchisor and Franchisees 73

4.2.3 Employees  75

4.2.4 Customers  78

4.3 PRODUCT RANGE  79

4.3.1 Made-to-Order Food  80

4.3.2 Fresh Products Served in a Pleasant Atmosphere  83

4.4 Profits  86

4.4.1 Facts and Figures  87

4.4.2 Caring for others  90

 

5 A GLOBAL VIEW OF WENDY’S  94

5.1 MARKETING EFFORTS  94

5.1.1 The Development of Wendy’s Advertising 94

5.1.2 Promotion and Product Placement 100

5.2 COMING OF AGE  102

5.2.1 Wendy’s Worldwide 104

5.2.2 Wendy’s Operations in Germany during the 1980s 107

 

6 WENDY’S FROM THE CUSTOMERS’ POINT OF VIEW 112

6.1 MARKET RESEARCH STUDIES  112

6.2 CUSTOMER OPINIONS  113

 

7 WENDY’S: HAPPILY EVER AFTER?  120

 

8 BUSINESS AND FOOD GLOSSARY  122

8.1 CONTENT AND STRUCTURE  122

8.2 GLOSSARY ENGLISH – GERMAN  124

 

SOURCES  156

LITERATURE  156

WEB PAGES  158

TABLE OF IMAGES  175

APPENDIX  181

CONVERSATION PROTOCOL  181

QUESTIONNAIRES  184

SUMMARY OF RESULTS 232

 

 

 

 

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