Gimme a Burger, Hold the Chaos

How organized do fast-food outlets seem to consumers? Less so than the motor-vehicle bureau, says a new report by Public Agenda.

Aimed at learning how people experienced the process of voting last November, Public Agenda did a survey in the weeks following Election Day that asked (among other things) how organized or disorganized voters found their polling place to be. For comparison sake, it also asked how organized or disorganized people found other common consumer venues to be on their most recent visit.

Though many Americans deride the motor-vehicle bureau as an exemplar of chaos, 54 percent found it “very organized” the last time they had their license renewed or changed; 30 percent found it “somewhat organized.” Six percent said it was “not very organized” and 5 percent “not at all organized.” (The rest gave another answer or declined to respond.) Those were better than the numbers for fast-feeders. Asked how well organized their “local McDonald’s, Burger King or other fast-food restaurant was the last time you ordered food there,” 35 percent said “very,” 39 percent “somewhat,” 9 percent “not very” and 5 percent “not at all.”

Banks fared well in Public Agenda’s polling. Asked to rate “your local bank the last time you made a deposit or withdrawal,” 78 percent found it very organized and 14 percent somewhat organized. Just 1 percent found it not very organized, matching the number who said it was not at all organized. The post office (“last time you mailed a letter or package there”) scored better than fast-food outlets but less well than banks: 65 percent of respondents found it very organized, 25 percent somewhat organized, 5 percent not very organized and 3 percent not at all organized.