Sample Research Paper on Ronald McDonald House Charities

Background of the Organization

Ronald McDonald House Charities(RMHC) is a non-profit organization established from the idea in a Children’s hospital in Philadelphia. The idea started after Fred Hill who was spending days and nights in the Philadelphia Eagles hospital after his daughter Kim had been admitted for leukemia medication. Fred Hill and his wife had to be at the bedside of their daughter sleeping on the couches and having to eat from the vending machines at the hospital. The experience made the parent think of a nearby accommodation that would help those families with children at the hospital. In 1974, the Philadelphia Eagles team and local community approached McDonald restaurant in order to acquire funding for the first project leading to the name of Ronald McDonald House Charities (

Each of the Ronald McDonald Houses offers a place where parents with seriously ill children at a nearby hospital can get accommodation and other basic needs like food. This concept helps to maintain proper relationship between the children and parents. Research indicates that a child with family support is more likely to have a positive response to the medical care. At the nearby accommodation, Ronald McDonald House Charities ensures that parents and other family members constantly keep up with the progress of the child medication, which also helps in the improving the psychologicalcondition of the patient ( What started as a charity project for a Philadelphia neighborhood has now turned to be an international project with presence in more than 50 countries across the world. These houses provide an environment that allows parents and other family members to eat normal meals also providing recreational facilities.

Other than the Ronald McDonald Houses, the charity organization has expanded into other services like Ronald McDonald family room that houses family members; and Ronald McDonald mobile care that provides certain mobile services for families and patients. All of the services run from individual and corporate donors in various countries. As noted above, McDonalds is the main donor to the charity organization working towards financing all operational costs within all houses and related services. McDonalds’ restaurants have special boxes where public can make donations towards the charities. The restaurant chain collects millions of dollars each year in order to support all the three Ronald McDonald House services(Franck et al., 2011). The growth of this non-profit organization has made it possible to scale charitable activities to other sectors like provision of educational scholarships to a number of needy students across the world. So far, Ronald McDonald House has given out more than $50 million to support needy students acquire educational.

Management Excellence Framework

Non-profit organizations have a greater task of collecting donations from willing entities.The growth of the Ronald McDonald House Charities occurs because of the effortstowards excellence. Any organization, whether for profit or not for profit, can only advance operations after deliberate measures that promote growth. For the non-profit organizations like Ronald McDonald House Charities, it calls for hard work and proper management excellence framework in order to register growth. As noted above, the idea led to establishing the first house in Philadelphia; however, Ronald McDonald House has now grown to an international organization with presence in more than 50 countries across the world, which is a sign of excellence and achievement.

Management of the charity organization has always worked towards achieving goals by concentrating strategies under a number of areas (Daft & Marcic, 2014). The critical areas that the management prioritizes includeexcellent leadership and proper strategies in place in order to collect enough finances towards running services and expansion. More than anything else, serving customers isan integral part of the organization, without which there would be no services. The outcome of the services is also measured and analyzed in order to have knowledge-based information of the outcome and progress (Cameron, 2014).Management works to ensure that workforce in all the countries have the right knowledge and sincerity on the progress of services and expenditures. All the above factors help Ronald McDonalds House Charities build operational systems that produce results (see figure 1 below).

Figure 1: Management Excellence Framework at Ronald McDonalds House Charities

Viewed Through the Lens of the Individual

Knowing Oneself

Ronald McDonalds House Charities has grown in many dimensions, which shows resilience towards achieving particular goals. Such an achievement depends on the attachment and the desire to help families avoid serious problems while their children undergo medical care in hospitals.The projects by the Ronald McDonalds House Charities appear real and serious, especially for the people who have children diagnosed with serious diseases like cancer. As stated earlier in this work, the vision began by a single individual who lived unpleasant experience while caring for the hospitalized daughter. Therefore, the success of this project seems anchored on the quest to avoid suffering by families. These are projects anchored on empathy as the main virtue. On the same note, knowing oneself requires a thorough understanding of the type of organization in question. For instance,Ronald McDonalds House Charities is a non-profit organization that provides services meaning that prudent use of the resources is of essence. Sincerity in allocating resources and accountability should be the top priorities in ensuring success on a non-profit organization like this.

Managing Stress

Leadership entails planning and successful implementation of a number of activities that seek to achieve organizational goals. In the process of implementation, there are times when pressure builds on the need to achieve the targets in place. Ronald McDonalds House Charities provide various servicesall meant to help parents of those children in hospitals. Working for such an organization requires a full understanding of the needs of all parents who seek assistance. Stressful situations may arise in situations where many parents seek help whereas the available space is limited. In fact, lack of adequate houses in countries of operations have necessitated admission of only those parents with children in critical conditions like cancer. Such pressures have led to more efforts towards expanding the services to accommodate more people. In order to make work easier, the management has in place a workforce that understands all the processes thus creating efficiency. Managing stress in such an environment also demands creating an environment that creates peace and hope to the parents and their children. The management has no option but to achieve that, even in stressful situations.

Viewed Through the Lens of Group Processes

This non-profit organization has achieved tremendous success through excellent business processes that work towards efficiencies.

Fostering Creativity and Innovation

The management has in place various strategies that make the organization thrive in almost 50 countries across the globe. An idea that was meant only to solve a single accommodation problem has grown into a larger scale through various innovative and creative skills. For instance, the Ronald McDonalds Houses have been designed to provide more services than the original intentions. Children who accompany their parents in the houses have recreational spaces where they can play. At the same time, the houses have special facilities that allow parents whose children suffer from the same condition gather together to share their experiences. Ronald McDonald Care Mobile has made it possible for the organization to serve underserved children in various communities, especially when it comes to the pediatric services. The mobile care also works to connect patients to other social services within the reach. Innovation and creativity have made the organization come up with scholarship and capacity building programs in order to broaden their scope of influence.

Motivation and Engagement

Ronald McDonald House Charities is an international organization operating in various countries. However, all the branches work together to ensure that mission of the organization advances. The top leadership has a system where all the employees are engaged in order to find out some of the strategies that can help improve service provision. The management understands that excellence is one of the core values that drive growth and confidence from customers. Therefore, all effort is put in place to ensure motivation of both employees and customers. Customer reviews on the company’s website suggest very positive comments on the engagement and motivation concepts by the leadership.

Communicating Effectively with Others

Communication forms the basis for growth, especially for international organizations like Ronald McDonald House Charities. First, the top management has done well in communicating the vision of the organization to all branches across the operational countries. On the same note, this paper alludes to the fact that individuals and cooperate donors all work together to ensure availability of the operational costs. The organizational has a proper mechanism that ensures transparent communication with all stakeholders. In addition, government regulations demand fulfilling certain laws and regulations, especially when it comes to the donors funding and the related taxes (Wu, Ma, &Xu, 2009).The website is one of the avenues where the public and other interested parties can access information.

Financial reporting is an important aspect that may lead to a serious fallout between organizations and the stakeholders. With this respect, Ronald McDonald House Charities has developed a trustworthy system that is accountable to the management and shareholders. Communications on financial status, donors, assets, and expenditure are available in terms of status reports, and easily available on their websites. Proper communication with all other stakeholders has been a pillar towards building confidence with each other (Kapucu, 2006). Communication channels have been arranged to flow from the top leadership to all local entities all over the world.


Managing Conflict

Conflicts are sometimes inevitable in large organizations like Ronald McDonald House Charities. The entity has employed many people at the management level and others at the lower levels working at the different houses near or within the hospital. These people are responsible for the smooth running of the operations. Management of different units is supposed to make decisions on how to run the operations. In different circumstances, it would be normal to expect leaders with different approaches towards certain management issues thus creating conflict. Conflict resolution is one quality of a successful organization. It may be easy to resolve conflicts for profit business entities in order to keep production activities; however, non-profits can easily fail to operate because of certain unresolved conflicts.

Ronald McDonald House Charities have been successful in the exponential expansion because of the ability to resolve certain conflicts that come at different moments. The 2008 case study on the operations at Ronald McDonald House Charities Kansas City shows a misunderstanding that occurred after different leaders at the management level disagreed on the next course of action for the entity. A new CEO, Samantha Johnson,had been appointed after the resignation of the former CEO. She brought with her another Campaign Consultant from Chicago. A conflict ensured between the new employer and the existing long time Development Director. The CEO organized a serious meeting in order to harmonize a common approach towards some of the projects at hand. The main problem was the perception by the Development Director that the new Campaign Consultant did not consult him when making decisions. The CEO solved the situation by forming a joint team in order to work on all projects in place including looking for more donor funds.


Working in Groups and Teams

Teams work is a pillar towards achieving success, especially in a non-profit organization that relies most of the time on volunteers. This means that all teams have to work together to ensure excellence in service provision. The main aim is to provide housing that makes parents comfortable and less worried about their sick children at the same time providing other necessary services according to the mission and vision. Ronald McDonald House Charities has different departments designed to ensure the smooth running of all services. Different teams within units ensure that all services run according to the planwith the main aim of satisfying customers. As noted above, services have expanded to the provision of scholarships. A specific team has that responsibility.

Viewed Through the Lens of Organizational Influences


Ronald McDonald House Charities has presence in more than 50 countries across the world; however, the different units have leadership that makes decisions as per the need. It is important to appreciate that needs for each community are different, therefore, necessitating different approaches in coming up with solutions. The different states have units that research on what actions are taken in order to reach the organizational goals. For instance, expansion requires that management seats down to map the way forward. Most of the time, Ronald McDonald House Charities works with relevant authorities in the states of operation in order to achieve excellence. A number of decisions are made according to the outcome of the research by the team on the ground (Denhardt, 315). The demand for housing has increased prompting the management to give priority to children with the most serious illnesses.


Leadership in Public Organizations

The kind of leadership in Ronald McDonald House Charities may not really echo that in the public organizations. However, this organization has a number of agreements with governments in matters of tax compliance and exemptions (Dunsire & Hood, 2010). Nevertheless, Ronald McDonald House Charities has all accountability systems in place to ensure trust and transparency of all operations.

Power and Organizational Politics

Each organization must have a system of leadership that shows thehierarchy of authority, from the lowest in the chain to the top management. Organizational politics also plays a role in hiring and making decisions. At Ronald McDonald House Charities, the board has the responsibility of choosing or appointing suitable candidates in order to fill the vacancies. However, the main points the different boards consider is the suitability of the candidate to the proposed position. The fact that Ronald McDonald House Charities is a non-profit organization that has to campaign for funds in order to operate requires persons with vast knowledge on the same area. In order to avoid confusion and power politics, the organization has a definite and clear leadership hierarchy with defined roles and responsibilities. Therefore, RMHC Board of Directors is the top most authority on matters of major decision-making. CEO or the Executive Director works directly under the board reporting to them. The CEO has a direct authority over house program, administrative, family house, and development directors. All these departments have other sub-sections designed to have a clear chain of authority in order to avoid misunderstandings (Gibison, 2013).



Viewed Through the Lens of System Influences

Organizational Change

RMHC is an entity with a proper organizational structure that creates efficiency when it comes to the operational success. The exponential growth has been because of the excellent organizational structure that allows for change of leadership without creating vacuum. On the same note, the system also ensures hiring of qualified personnel with the burden of the creating enabling environment for the customers. Such a structure has contributed to the growth of the activities and programs, even with the change in leadership. On the same note, the donors have also developed a sense of confidence in the organization keeping up with their contributions. On the same note, proper financial reporting system has also created confidence to an extent that all donors can easily follow-up on how their funds work (Barzelay, 2001). A poorly developed organizational change structure can easily lead to the collapse of a non-profit organization like Ronald McDonald House Charities. Lack of trust and non-accountable leadership leads to lack of confidence and withdrawal of support by donors. So far, McDonald’s restaurant is the main donor working towards collecting donations towards the projects. The success of the chains is a sign of confidence to the other donors.

Tenets of the New Public Service

Public service is about providing service to the public in a way that seeks to meet the intended purpose. In the past, the public service has been about steering the workforce to work towards achieving certain objectives. One of the challenges has been the bureaucratic processes that make work difficult. In most cases, there has been a serious delay in providing services to the consumers in good time. Ronald McDonald House Charities has put in place certain measures that incorporate the new public service tenets. For instance, the organization has changed leadership style from steering process towards service, which has made it easier in providing services within the shortest timeline (Ridgeway, 2013). The new public service citizens are in the forefront towards attaining the goals. Ronald McDonald House Charities engage in public service by providing services that require immediate action. Therefore, the old bureaucratic public service would make it difficult for customers to access services at the earliest time possible. RMHC leadership only works to facilitate quick access of services in all the facilities.





Barzelay, C. (2001). The new public management: Improving research and policy dialogue.

New York, NY: Russell Sage Foundation.

Cameron, T. (2014).Using responsive evaluation in strategic management.Strategic Leadership

Review, 4 (2), 22-27.

Daft, R., & Marcic, D. (2014). Building management skills: An action-first approach. Boston,       MA: South-Western Cengage Learning.

Denhardt, R.B., Denhardt, J.V., &Aristigueta, M.P. (2016) Managing human behavior in public   and nonprofit organizations. (4th ed.) Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Dunsire, A., & Hood, C. (2010). Cutback management in public bureaucracies: Popular

theoriesand observed outcomes in whitehall. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Franck, L., Ferguson, D., Fryda, S., &Rubin, N. (2011).The child and family hospital

experience: Is it influenced by family accommodation?McDonald House, Oxford: UK.

Gibison, A. (2013). McDonald’s: a good image with bad ethics.

Retrieved from Neumann University website

Kapucu, N. (2006). New Public Management: Theory, ideology, and practice.
In A. Farazmand & K. Pinkowski (Eds.).Handbook of Globalization, Governance, and      Public             Administration(889-902).New York, NY: Taylor & Francis.

Ridgeway, C. (2013). Organizational psychology: Is knowing yourself the key to understanding    

organizations?Retrieved from Bradford University website

RMHC.Our History.Retrieved from

Wu, X., Ma, R., &Xu, G. (2009).Accelerating secondary innovation throughorganizational

learning: A case study and theoretical analysis.Industry & Innovation, 16(4/5), 389-409.