Ray Croc, Founder of McDonald’s… Was He a Wartime CEO?

June 9, 2011

As some of you know, I wrote a blog a while ago titled Peacetime CEO or Wartime CEO… Who Would You Rather Have Running A Company.

As a former operational executive with over 20 years in the software industry before I joined OpenView Venture Partners, a Boston based venture firm that invests growth capital in expansion stage software companies and their management teams, I definitely know what I want in a CEO.

Over those 20 plus years in the software industry I have worked for both types, and the Peacetime CEO’s never cut it in my book. My favorite movie scene is from Patton when George C. Scott walks out on stage and states that “No poor dumb SOB saved his country by dying for it… he saved his country by making the other poor dumb SOB die for his.”

When I came across this Ray Croc quote below, I needed to share it with you. In business school in college I wrote a major paper about McDonald’s and was a big admirer of how Ray Croc started and built the business through operational execution to take the top position in the space.

Ray Croc once said, “If any of my competitors were drowning, I would stick a hose in their mouth and turn on the water.”

In the competitive business world — not just the software world — you need to be in it to win it.

Is there any doubt why he was successful in building a great company. He was a Wartime CEO.

All the best!


Venture Partner

<strong>George Roberts</strong> is a Venture Partner at OpenView. He enjoys partnering with companies and helping them achieve their goals through strategy, focus and operational execution. From 1990 to 2003, George spent 13 years at Oracle Corporation, most recently having served as Executive Vice President of North American Sales. While at Oracle, George was responsible for over $1 billion in revenue and more than 2,000 employees, reporting directly to the company’s CEO and Chairman, Larry Ellison.