McDonald’s HR looks into new training and hiring processes to emphasize corporate values, as the fast-food giant faces controversies

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McDonald’s is doubling down on values in the wake of controversies, including a lawsuit from Black former franchisees and the company accusing its former CEO of covering up sexual relationships with employees.

On Monday, McDonald’s held an online event with corporate employees around the world, discussing the importance of values at the company, according to notes from the event viewed by Business Insider. 

Global Chief People Officer Heidi Capozzi said McDonald’s is exploring how to incorporate values into the hiring process, as well as looking at new training centered on values for “everyone from our corporate staff to our restaurant crews.” McDonald’s values will also be incorporated into a performance management update. 

“We will be updating performance management, so that as part of our year-end process, we are evaluating against priorities and objectives that were accomplished, but also how that work was accomplished according to our values,” Capozzi said. 

McDonald’s HR department is facing allegations of past misconduct

Capozzi started a top-to-bottom review of McDonald’s HR department when she joined the company in April.

Her predecessor in the role, David Fairhurst, was fired in November 2019. While the company did not share the reason for Fairhurst leaving McDonald’s at the time, Capozzi said in a recent internal meeting he was fired “with cause” after making women at the company uncomfortable. 

Fairhurst would regularly drink with a group of other HR staffers, which included women significantly subordinate to him at the company, current and former employees told Business Insider as part of an investigation into McDonald’s recent controversies. Business Insider spoke with more than half a dozen current and former McDonald’s employees and franchisees on the condition of anonymity. 

Read more: Insiders reveal how former McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook went from the chain’s savior to its worst nightmare as sex-scandal accusations threaten to envelop the fast-food giant

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Fairhurst was seen pulling a female staffer onto his lap at a party in late 2018, an employee who witnessed the incident told Business Insider. The Wall Street Journal reported that McDonald’s investigated and ultimately told telling employees that excessive drinking was inappropriate. Despite the investigation, Fairhurst continued to serve as the head of HR.

“The inmates were running the asylum,” when it came to McDonald’s HR team, one former corporate employee told Business Insider. Fairhurst — the head of HR — was creating HR problems, instead of solving them, he said. “It was no secret that this was a serious problem.”

While two former employees questioned the decision to keep Fairhurst on as the head of HR, a current employee who works on the global people team said Fairhurst’s alleged behavior was not necessarily seen as something that could impede investigations. 

“We just thought he was a sad man who drank too much and weirdly didn’t have friends outside of people who worked for him,” the employee said.

In early July, McDonald’s received an anonymous tip about misconduct from the HR department under Fairhurst’s leadership, according to McDonald’s. The tipster also claimed former CEO Steve Easterbrook had a sexual relationship …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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