Executive Summary/Background- The Harrison Company, a mid-sized regional retailer with 80 stores in 7 states, is headquartered in State College, PA. At present, despite each store generating approximately $600,000 in revenue per annum, the company faces a time of crisis. Sales and profits have been declining over the past few years, the company’s president has retired and broken all contacts with the company, and there is no real strategic or competitive plan. There are expansions planned for the next year, but several immediate concerns that require a more strategic approach to several cogent issues the company faces. For instance, there is a public relations issue from a former manager regarding the quality of the clothing, union issues, and the fiscal responsibility of proactive philanthropy vs. cost containment/control. Up to now, the company has been operating using a push strategy with heavy local advertising creating customer demand (1/2 in local television advertising, 1/4 in local sponsorships, and 1/4 in coupons). The company makes 1/2 of its revenue during 5 months of the year (June-August and November-December). Because of the demographics of the customers, production identifiers (Made in China, Made in Mexico) are removed. Half of each store consists of country/new age with premium pricing, the other 1/2 of consumer non-durables (convenience items) with moderate prices. All products are marketed as high quality products. The Board members are quite conservative, and more concerned with company performance than in long-term growth. Finally, management is in crisis; there is significant infighting between groups, no consistent message or plan, insecurity, and a conservable lack of loyalty and belief in the company itself.
Part 1 — Integrated Business Strategy — In general, the organization needs to make several very basic decisions. Stakeholders for the organization include the Board of Directors, employees, consumers, and vendors. Each of these specific stakeholders has a divergent interest and view of how the company should work, and what the goal is for the marketing mix. For instance:
Board of Directors
Maximize profits so that ROI and stock price will increase.
Short-term growth, pushing merchandise, no long-term planning, implies golden goose approach.
Insecurity about company’s solvency; lack of faith in leadership and management — wants to believe in company while managing growth.
Lacksidasical performance, minimal customer service and actual sales; indifference as to store maintenance and rudeness to homeless and others
Best value for the dollar. Most convenient shopping for areas without adequate alternative penetration; most merchandize in location.
Multiple choices in the market; will go elsewhere if business is not valued. Needs to believe in top quality products.
Increased sales and purchases, on time receivables.
If sales drop, so will service levels.
What is the major message/mission statement for the organization? Harrison Company will provide a dual service to the communities which it serves: 1) to supply basic and needed items at a cost-effective basis year round, and 2) to open up its specialty stores between Memorial Day and Labor Day, and from November 1 to December 31st each year to serve the tourism and seasonal industries. The specialty stores will be known as Harrison Plus and will occupy approximately 60% of the store physical store locations.
What direction should the company take? Harrison should not continue to try to be all things to all people. Using the abovementioned mission statement, it will provide a series of unique and beneficial products and services to the local community during the school year month, and expand to aggressive marketing practices during the summer and Holiday months.
Strategic direction? Harrison will be split into two entities as noted above with a 60/40 physical space. Inventory and some managerial employees for Harrison Plus will begin work 15-25 days prior to June 1 and November 1 to stock and prepare the stores; and work approximately 7-10 days after Labor Day and New Year’s Day to pack up and store merchandise. Harrison Plus managers will be taken, whenever possible, from Harrison employees, and Seasonal staff will round out the holes in personnel. In addition, a profitability analysis will be run on all stores over 100 miles from the home warehouse to determine suitability for retention, closure, or lease/rental agreements.
Implications with functional departments:
Personnel — Year round staff will consist of dedicated workers who have managerial potential for the Plus stores seasonally. Some reduction in force will occur; some seasonal staff will be needed.
Warehousing — More automating the warehouse function will be necessary and may result in reduction of force or, more appropriately, transferring of personnel to other functional areas.
Delivery — Delivery staff may be cut depending on ROI analysis of distant stores; as will vehicle leases, maintenance, etc.
Administration — Administrative functions will be streamlined and additional investments in technology made to align with a more balanced and appropriate need for margin.
Part 3- Synthesizing/Analyzing Information – Clearly, if the company continues to spiral downward, sales will continue to decrease. The company must focus on what it does best, and when it does this. It cannot function with major sales being staffed during down times, and must concentrate on a presence year-long with specialty openings for seasonal merchandise. Change management, streamlining, and increased technology will be the key to adapt and prosper.
a. Marketing — Sales forecast based on RIF, closing off of 60% of stores for 5 months of the year; realignment of staff and increased investment in technology.
Revenue in Millions
Additionally, due to the trends, RIF, investment in technology, smarter purchasing and economies of scale, we estimate that sales will increase over the next five years in increments of 5% per annum to get Harrison and Harrison Plus to the industry average.
Marketing will need to change as well to revise the look, feel, and mission of the company:
Split into two sections; meet with suppliers to provide economies of scale; view trends for Plus offerings, purchase in advance from foreign buyers to lock in price, inspect for quality of goods.
Improvement in selection and appropriateness for market. Push economies of scale to bring prices down for regular merchandise to remain competitive in market.
Two strategies; low and fair pricing for regular store; premium for Plus.
Use seasonal merchandise to offset lower pricing during regular course of year; increases loyalty of year round users which will word-of-mouth to seasonal visitors.
Split stores into 60/40; revisit decoration, modernize.
Different look and feel for seasonal times; stay current and innovative.
Reduce television during most of the year; find more effective use of advertising dollars for local-local, then use buying power to influence seasonal business.
Decreases overhead costs for at least 5 months of the year, may reduce outlay of expenses by as much as a percent; however, beefing up marketing expense for Plus may have a larger impact on the bottom line.
b. Finance — The Company has a large portion of its assets tied up in equipment, land and stores. It went from almost 8% of its assets in cash to 1%, significantly reducing its ability to handle a crisis. Inventory has remained stable in the 27 percentile range, which can be reduced, as can expenses, based on reduction of staff, hours of operation, and 5 months of Plus closures. Long-Term Debt is now at almost $5 million, or 17%, which is too high for a retail store. Instead, reduction and focusing might increase initial debt to modernization, but likely sales of some of the outlying stores, equipment, and additional reduction should net at least $2 million, further reduce debt.
2 Years Ago
Ratios indicate the company could likely not pay off all its obligations if they came due; expenses must be reduced but new financing, purchasing decisions, and logistics are necessary. Leverage ratios show that there is more assets (long-term) than debt that may be leveraged to improve company performance.
c. Logistics — Logistics will radically change since it is likely that the outlying stores will be closed, cut back to just seasonal (PLUS) operations, or leased. Supply chain managerial issues are critical, as is buying trending. Appropriate staff who can predict trends for Plus operations will be critical, as will logistical agreements with Chinese and Central American manufacturers.
Part 4- Global Trends – The company is desirous of continued growth, and believes with the new propensity towards globalism that it must manage its brand portfolio and expand its business organization while, at the same time, preserving the strong brand image and distinctive identity of the flagship brand, which has become the Plus side of the organization. Globalism will increase the availability of certain goods that can set the organization apart from others, if buyers are able to make the appropriate connections with those suppliers. This will also require aggressive and focused marketing leadership, as well as some additional sophisticated strategic planning.
Part 5- Leadership and Group Dynamics- It is clear from the information presented that the company is in trouble. It has rested on its laurels and older way of managing for decades, and must now either reinvent itself or die. The trends downward are indicative of a need for drastic measures, and while change management is difficult, it is clear that the following steps need to be taken immediately:
1. Analysis of profitability by store factoring in increased costs of gas, shipping, wages, etc. This may mean closure of outlying stores, reducing in hours, or simply opening up some of the medium and long-range stores during the Plus season (Mid-May-Labor Day, November and December).
2. Improvement of technology to work with inventory and supply chain management. This may increase debt for a time, but will balance out.
3. Disposing of outmoded and underperforming assets; including stores, stock, trucks and shelving/supplies.
4. Rethinking of company culture and employee training; use loyal regular employees to manage Plus times; use their expertise to develop new markets.
5. Increase ties to the seasonal community since 1/2 of the revenue is made during seasonal times; reduce staff and expenses for rest of year to bare minimum.
From a leadership perspective, the new President must first exchange information with the senior management team, finding out who will be open to change and who will not. Once a group of change minded individuals who will embrace a future view, a steering committee should be formed to help manage the change and diversity necessary to both impress seasonal customers and the community as well as trim costs. There are three basic leadership paradigms that are needed:
1. Redefine the entire corporate vision and strategic process based on the Brand Stewardship Model.
2. Realign and modify the organizational structure to robustly “encourage” collaboration among the company’s various regional and local offices.
3. Remove the Central-Field-Central model by giving more authority to management at the local level; encourage this with appropriate compensation.
It is through certain leadership traits that the new CEO will succeed — coercive, authoritative, and then moving into democratic. One can easily see the necessity to start with tight reins, lesson up during as the change paradigm takes hold, and then move to a more democratic regime once the needed changes occur. Despite not wanting to be perceived as an ogre, the new CEO must be coercive with staff due to the urgency of cash flow and revenue growth. Once immediate compliance with requests is ensured, the CEO can relax a bit and move towards a more egalitarian mobilization of resources and ideas. Finally, democratic leadership asks that a team approach — a consensus to automatically generate team building and open communication be applied to all levels of the company. It is this gradual relaxing of rules and regulations that can often change the culture after it has remained so myopically ingrained for decades.
Based on the change management and leadership paradigms instituted, the key during this very critical period would be dual: change management and brand stewardship:
Change must continue to be institutionalized through formal policies, structures, systems, and regulations within the group. This remains consistent with the role of leadership being one that primarily clarifies measurable behaviors, helps define vision, and works in a manner that engenders human resource management that actualizes employees. For Harrison, this translates to a continual alignment of evaluation that is based on the things that the customer most need and appreciate.
Brand stewardship — One of the primary reasons Harrison began a spiral downward was the lack of attention to the customer’s actual, versus perceived need. Change management cannot be pushed, but it is the job of a good leader to help redefine the message and meaning so that senior management can adapt to a needed philosophical change, which then flows downward to promote a companywide commitment to Brand Stewardship.
The Harrison Company Case
Brian, T., et.al. (2010). The Truth About Best Branding Practices. New York: Pearson.
Horibe, F. (2001). Creating the Innovation Culture. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
Paton, R. And McCalman, J. (2000). Change Management: A Guide to Effective Implementaion.
Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Get Professional Assignment Help Cheaply
Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?
Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.
Why Choose Our Academic Writing Service?
- Plagiarism free papers
- Timely delivery
- Any deadline
- Skilled, Experienced Native English Writers
- Subject-relevant academic writer
- Adherence to paper instructions
- Ability to tackle bulk assignments
- Reasonable prices
- 24/7 Customer Support
- Get superb grades consistently
Online Academic Help With Different Subjects
Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.
Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.
While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.
Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.
In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.
Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.
We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!
We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.
Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.
What discipline/subjects do you deal in?
We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.
Are your writers competent enough to handle my paper?
Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.
What if I don’t like the paper?
There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.
- When assigning your order, we match the paper’s discipline with the writer’s field/specialization. Since all our writers are graduates, we match the paper’s subject with the field the writer studied. For instance, if it’s a nursing paper, only a nursing graduate and writer will handle it. Furthermore, all our writers have academic writing experience and top-notch research skills.
- We have a quality assurance that reviews the paper before it gets to you. As such, we ensure that you get a paper that meets the required standard and will most definitely make the grade.
In the event that you don’t like your paper:
- The writer will revise the paper up to your pleasing. You have unlimited revisions. You simply need to highlight what specifically you don’t like about the paper, and the writer will make the amendments. The paper will be revised until you are satisfied. Revisions are free of charge
- We will have a different writer write the paper from scratch.
- Last resort, if the above does not work, we will refund your money.
Will the professor find out I didn’t write the paper myself?
Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.
What if the paper is plagiarized?
We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.
When will I get my paper?
You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.
Will anyone find out that I used your services?
We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.
How our Assignment Help Service Works
1. Place an order
You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.
2. Pay for the order
Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.
3. Track the progress
You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.
4. Download the paper
The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.
PLACE THIS ORDER OR A SIMILAR ORDER WITH US TODAY AND GET A PERFECT SCORE!!!