A sixteenth century English romance writer named George Pettie once quipped, “So long as I know it not, it hurteth mee not.” In other words, what you don’t know can’t hurt you.

While the merits of this sentiment may be debatable, one version of the opposite certainly is not: What you do know can help you. Especially when it comes to your McDonald’s business: Financially speaking, what you know or can learn from past performance – both recent and over time – will help you make better decisions in the future.

Regular analysis of certain metrics is how you can make your business more profitable, avoid making poor decisions (again), and separate yourself from the ever more crowded marketplace. One such financial metric that is often overlooked yet unquestionably important for you to analyze and understand is contribution margin.

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