Part 1: Learning from Cases and Class Discussion
- Mistakes in Firms
I do not agree that it is impossible for a firm to avoid mistakes. This is because a company could easily elude errors in instances where it employs experts in each area. There is also a possibility of avoiding mistakes in cases where a firm dedicates adequate financial and human resources to its diverse marketing activities. The key example of an oversight in product strategy is the confusion of customer requirements with product requirements. An example of a pricing error is the determination of prices in respect to costs without considering the customers’ perception of value. The key mistake in distribution is the use of costly channels leaving out the cheaper channels that could maximize profitability. An example of a promotional mistake is the inaccurate translation of promotional messages across different countries.
- Speeding Up Awareness of Emerging Market-Related Problems
A firm could speed up its awareness of the emerging market-related problems using diverse sources of information that reveal crucial information that might affect the firm. For instance, a firm could speed up its awareness of emerging market-related issues using sources of information such as corporate public relations, industry relations, newspapers, television stations, research groups, and government organizations. This would help it take the required corrective actions within the set period.
- Large Firms and Small Firms
Large companies tend to take a more conservative position and are slower in taking action compared to smaller firms because of their strong financial bases that emanate from stockholders and financial institutions. It is worth noting that large firms are slower in taking corrective actions because of their extensive strengths in research and development, customer loyalty, and economies of scale that are not possessed by smaller firms.
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Additionaly, small businesses are more nimble and responsive to the marketing environment because of their desire to try out new strategies that would enable them achieve competitive advantage in the market. They are responsive to the market environment because of their flexible structures and the desire to take risks that lead to market success.
- Costly Errors to the Firm
Errors of commission are likely to be costly to a firm compared to the errors of omission and implementation. Wrong decisions are costly to the firm because the company dedicates most of its financial resources to the decisions, hence leading to massive losses. The firm would automatically incur massive losses because of the expenditures incurred due to wrong decisions within the institution. For example, a firm could lose $1,000,000 because of a wrong decision, which could lead to losses in the financial statements.
- Successful Firms Losing their Pattern of Success
Success is not enduring even for some prospering firms because of their failure to maintain the highest standards and stick to customer experience. Howard Schulz noted that success is not an entitlement and companies have to work on it all the time. This means that some successful firms become complacent in terms of quality assurance and consumer experience, hence losing a grip on their success in the market.
Part 2: Learning From the Video and Power Point Cases
- Howard Schultz on Starbucks Corporate and Management Philosophy
The underlying rationale for Starbuck’s compensation/benefits program was to attract well-educated employees and improve their morale and trust in the company. Schultz realized that employees at the company would be in a better position to deliver quality services and feel part of the company in instances where they had trust in the organization. The high level of trust would have ensured they did not come up with a union because the company took care of their needs.
Schultz’s solution to the mentioned dilemma entailed the expansion of Starbuck’s stores to different parts of the country and spread to Americans with average incomes. The company was committed to providing quality products and services at the most affordable prices through new customer experience. Therefore, Schultz solved the dilemma by bringing clients closer to the company through numerous stores, quality, and fair pricing.
The point of Schultz sharing his experience with the rabbi was to demonstrate the efforts taken toward making the company better in all aspects of its operation. He also did that in order to indicate the origin of the inspiration that motivated the growth of the company in all aspects.
- Southwest Airlines
When purchasing an airline ticket, one actually signs a transportation contract that involves the movement from point A to point B. This is a transportation contract because they usually measure payment according to the distance that one is travelling and not the comfort one will have in the plane. This explains why the amount varies with the distance travelled by individuals.
I strongly agree with SWA’s policy that requires obese passengers to pay for two tickets. They occupy significant space on the seats and nobody would accept to sit in the remaining space. In tandem with profitability within the company, they should pay for two tickets to pay for the unoccupied little space. As a large passenger, I would automatically be annoyed with this policy because of its discriminative nature. On the other hand, if I were a normal passenger, I would support it to the fullest because of its recognition of comfortable travelling for all passengers.
Singapore International Airline’s policy that first class passengers should refrain from having sexual intercourse aboard is a reasonable policy because it tries to protect moral standards within the society. The absence of soundproof walls implies that the action would be heard by other passengers, which would translate to public indecency and a breach of moral standards.