10 Secret Things About McDonalds As Told By A Former Employee


Work sucks. I think I’ve mentioned this at least six times before, but it just really sucks. As part of my intense dislike for the job, I’ve decided to dish the beans and spill the dirt on the secrets I’ve learned – and used myself – since starting my minimum wage job.

1. Sometimes when we say the coffee’s fresh, and we say, “There’s a fresh pot in the back” it just means we’re going to microwave the coffee.

It’s probably one of the most common lies we tell. There are people who will be handed an actual fresh cup of coffee, and tell me it’s not hot or it’s not fresh. Clearly these are the people who want their tongues to have third degree burns, and it’s really not my place to judge, so I just microwave their coffee for about a minute and they seem satisfied enough.

2. If you ask for decaf, and there’s not any brewed, and you’re coming from drive thru or you seem really impatient to wait, there’s a good chance you’ve actually received half a cup of regular coffee with half a cup of hot water.

This is something even the managers do. We deny it, but no one can tell the difference anyway. And sometimes we do it when there’s not enough regular coffee to fill your cup but it’s too close to lunch to brew another pot.

3. The free things don’t always mean we like you.

Most of the time we give things to people we want out of the restaurant – the crabby lady demanding her drink she didn’t pay for, the old man cussing at me because he didn’t say senior coffee with his order – they get their drinks for free, because I want them to leave.

4. We don’t have to be nice

People like to assume that we are at their mercy because we’re minimum wage workers and the customer is always right. Which is totally not true. I’ve had managers who stop in the middle of taking orders because the person is rude. Shut ‘em down, and send ‘em off.

5. Prices don’t fall because you order a sandwich but don’t want one ingredient. And no, we can’t change them.

We get this couple that likes to order a Bacon Egg and Cheese McGriddle with no egg and they ask me to change the price because they don’t want egg. I can’t do that. And I don’t want to, either.

6. Fries – no salt.

When we’re working the overnight shift, a favorite trick of the employees faced with people who ask for fresh fries no salt is to take the already salted fries and put them in the fryer for about twenty seconds. It only works when no one’s around, because people throw fits about that, and it’s the same people who ask for salt packets with their meal. We know you want fresh fries.  Making a no salt request means we have to almost burn our hands with the hot oil when we pour the fries straight from the fryer. JUST SAY YOU WANT FRESH FRIES.

7. People make messes on the table more often than we can clean

So if your table is dirty, and I have a line of people, and I still go to clean it – don’t yell at me for how dirty it is. It’s not my fault your fellow consumer decided to leave ketchup and lettuce everywhere. But sure, keep yelling at me.

8. Drive thru is priority

It doesn’t matter if you’ve been waiting five minutes already and that drive thru order just came in – we’re obligated to get their stuff out before yours. I’ve been yelled at for taking sandwiches that are for front counter because drive thru needs them. I’ve actually seen managers take a special front counter order – i.e, no pickles or cheese – and say, “Hey, add pickles and cheese onto this,” and then take it for drive thru.

9. We see you with soda in that water cup.

We’ve seen it all, and you’re not slick when you put the cup near your hip. Nice try. You’ve just really underestimated how much we care. It’s okay, we’ll just charge you extra for all the sauce you keep asking for.

10. We don’t actually want to be there.

This is to people who want to make small talk with me at five in the morning. I’m really tired, and I don’t actually want to be at work at 5AM. Please stop talking so I can finish the tasks I’ve been given in the am. Sometimes I’ll be in the mood for small talk, but most of the time I’m just trying to make it to my first break so I can gulp down a cup of coffee. I’m sorry. But I hate everyone before seven.

This post originally appeared at Writtalin.