Sometime we all forget how innovative McDonald’s has been.

From Ronald McDonald to happy meals to breakfast menu’s to drive through sales to McCafe’s, McDonald’s has been at the forefront of many innovations in the fast-food industry.

In fact, in its time it has been quite disruptive.

Although it must be said that they have suffered a downturn in sales recently due to changing consumer tastes (e.g. health conscious) and greater competition (e.g. Chipotle).

Perhaps with this in mind McDonald’s have launched something new.

All-day breakfast.

I know it’s not as earth shattering as say a new Apple Watch but for the McDonald’s folk its quite a change.

Here are some lessons for innovators from their latest innovation:

– they ran a number of tests or pilots in various markets before rolling the all day breakfast out to all their stores (good move).

– the all day breakfast has been introduced as a result of their customers asking for it (it seems obvious but better late than never)

– they involved their franchisees in the testing phase (very smart move)

– they are using Twitter to contact the 120000 people that have requested this move (makes perfect sense)

– the all day breakfast menu has been simplified (great for efficiency)

– it provides a great news story for their employees and franchisees (pay attention to the internal customers)

Now I am not endorsing McDonald’s but I think this initiative provides a number of important lessons to every would-be innovator and leader.

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