Grinding it out by Ray Kroc – The making of McDonald’s

  • Author: Ray Kroc
  • Genre: Autobiography Grinding It Out: The Making of McDonald's eBook: Kroc, Ray:  Kindle Store

Audio version available:

The story of McDonalds and Ray Kroc

Education and Career

Ray Kroc saw school as useless, he dropped out of high school to become a Red Cross ambulance driver in World War 1. Kroc lied about his age to start working at 15. After World War 1, Kroc went on to look for other jobs. He got various jobs ranging from pianist to real estate salesman.

Eventually, Kroc became a paper cup salesman working for the Lilly Tulip Cup company. Kroc was a tremendous salesman, he unlike other salesmen got to know his client. He was an amazing negotiator and salesman. Kroc knew how to satisfy the demands of his clients. He focused on adding value to the client rather than selling them a product.

Later on his career, he started working as a milkshake machine salesman. In fact, he met the McDonald brothers while working as a milkshake machine salesman. Kroc met Mac and Dick McDonald in 1954 when he got multiple orders from them. When he visited their restaurant in San Bernardino, California. he was amazed by everything. Their menu was quite simple consisting of Burgers, french fries, and shakes. However, the customers loved everything about it. Additionally, he was amazed by the efficiency of the operations.


After some time, Kroc met with the McDonald brothers to discuss the potential of McDonald’s. When Kroc asked if the brothers had any expansion plans, he got nothing. Turns out the brothers were satisfied with their current store, they did not want to deal with expanding the restaurant.

Kroc was dissatisfied with the result he got, after some thinking. He offered to work as a franchising agent. After considering the offer, the MacDonald brothers accepted the offer. In 1955, Kroc opened his first Mcdonald’s store in Des Plaines, Illinois.

In 1959, McDonald’s opened its 100th store. Unfortunately, Kroc had come to resent the MacDonald brothers.  There had been multiple disagreements between the two sides. In 1961, Kroc decided to buy the company from the McDonalds brothers. The brothers demanded $2.7 million for the acquisition. With the help of Harry Sonneborn, Kroc secured a $2.7 million loan to acquire the company.

In 1977, Kroc became the senior chairman of the company after stepping down from his previous position. He also worked on implementing and designing new innovative items for Mcdonalds. Additionally, he kept working on real estate deals as the senior chairman.

Kroc stayed as the senior chairman of the company till he lost his life in San Diego, California due to heart failure. When Kroc lost his life, Mcdonalds was worth $8 billion and had 7.500 restaurants across nearly 36 countries.

Other Ventures

Kroc acquired the San Diego Padres in 1974. Afterwards in 1977, he wrote Grinding it out, his autobiography.


Overall, Ray Croc was one of a kind. He was a tremendous entrepreneur and salesman. It is hard for us to cover Ray Kroc’s life in one book review. We highly recommend you check his book out. Grinding it out will help you better understand the DNA of a professional salesman.

We hope you enjoyed this book review. Be sure to tell us what you think in the comments!

Reflection Form

Reflection Form

You can use the form below to reflect on the things you have learned. Reflecting helps you understand and remember the things you learn!

*Your response will be sent to your email upon submission

How companies persuade you – Noah's negotiating handbook pt.3

August 29, 2020

One simple tip to help you with decision making

August 29, 2020

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.