As vice president and national ombudsman for McDonald’s USA, Ron Hawkins’ job is to resolve issues with franchisees and employees before they blow up into conflicts that draw in senior leadership or lawyers. So far he’s been pretty successful at it. Less than 1 percent of the cases that come to him advance to the top executives at Oak Brook, Ill.-based McDonald’s Corp., and in the past five years, not a single case has slipped out of his office and into a courtroom. Hawkins, ...

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