BAD 342 Information Technology & Project Management
Ben and Jerry’s strategic direction is partly consisting of their mission statement. The first part of their mission statement, product mission, states, “To make, distribute and sell the finest quality, all natural ice cream and related products in a wide variety of innovative flavors made from Vermont dairy products.” This part of the mission statement shows strategic direction by addressing the wants of the consumer through new flavors constantly being introduced quickly into the market and also quality control. The second component, the social mission, states “To operate the company in a way that actively recognizes the central role that business plays in the structure of society by initiating innovative ways to improve the quality of life of a broad community- local, national and international.” This is addressed through the annual 7.5 percent pre-tax earnings that the company donates to charities. The third part of the mission statement, the economic mission, states “To operate the company on a sound financial basis of profitable growth, increasing value for our shareholders, and creating career opportunities and financial rewards.” The company addresses the economic mission by offering employees stock options through the company and by continuing to sell stocks. Also, the company is addressing a strategic direction with the goal of maximizing profits through improving efficiency in the production of their products and by creating a competitive advantage over their competitors. Forces driving the direction
The forces driving this direction come partly from the company’s mission statement as well as their financial advisors who have given the company advice on how to continually grow the company to stay profitable. For example, when dairy prices began to raise, Ben and Jerry’s improved operating efficiencies to help offset the costs and loss in consumption. The financial analysts also recommended the company develop in areas such as promotional activities, international joint ventures, development of low fat products to target what the consumers were asking for, efficient manufacturing and for the company to lower, if not remove, the 7.5 percent donations and begin to direct that into marketing. Also, by the company going public in May of 1984, the company was able to offer stock to employees and a majority of the stockholders who were locals from Vermont; this connects back to their economic mission. Ben and Jerry have also gained a competitive advantage by bringing “innovative flavors” to the market quickly. Catalyst for change
The need for a catalyst for change presented itself when dairy prices began to go up and the company had to raise prices of their products and also change operating activities to become more efficient. Financial analysts of the company recommended the company begin to develop in promotional activities, international joint venture, further development of low-fat products and more efficient manufacturing to help strengthen the financial standpoint. Since the company began to see that the products were entering the mature life cycle in the United States, they started an international operation in Israel and Russia. Ben and Jerry’s also started to see a trend that consumers were starting to become more health conscience so the company started to produce low-fat frozen yogurt in 1992. Success factors for the Corporation
The successful factors of Ben and Jerry’s have been that the company listens to the demands of the customer. When demand for healthier, low-fat products rose, they saw a decrease in sales and saw the change in consumer preference and addressed the issue by producing low-fat frozen yogurts. As dairy costs began to go up, the company also found a new way to increase efficiency to help offset the loss in revenue. Ben and Jerry’s has also...