Talons Philosophy

An Open Online Highschool Philosophy Course


Phil’s Day Off at McDonalds

Phil’s Day Off was a unique occasion, and I’m not quite sure if I enjoyed it or not.

On one hand, it was an assignment I’m going to get marked on for doing nothing out of my normal routine, yet it got me thinking about my work in a sense that I’m not sure if I’m comfortable with.

Essentially, my activity took place at McDonalds. To be honest, I wasn’t thinking much of it when I started, but late on Sunday, I realized I needed something to take to class the next day that was ready to discuss. The only thing I had done all weekend, was work; so I thought about what could relate to my topic at work;  however, there’s not much related to art at McDonalds, so I broadened my search.

At McDonalds, part of my job as a Crew Trainer is to complete observation checklists about my coworkers, and give them feedback based on what they’re doing well, what they could be doing better, etc. and it was interesting to see how out of the three that I did over the weekend, there was a vast difference in the procedural correctness and enthusiasm when interacting with customers. All three workers were making the same amount of money, yet two were working hard, and one wanted to do nothing but pull out her phone. It got me thinking about what motivates people: is it just hardwired in some people’s brains that “working hard is good, so I’ll work hard,”?

I’m curious to know how motivation works, and why certain methods work for some people and not for others. Is there an objective desire to please in some people? Are they working for the possibility of getting promoted? And if so, what is the difference between working hard for a long term reward vs a short term reward?

During this whole shenanigan, I shaped my identity through my job; I know I haven’t worked at McDonalds for very long, but I feel I’ve become a McDonalds worker. It’s an extremely significant part of my life now, and I love my job!


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