Kudler Fine Foods

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Kudler Fine Foods is an upscale specialty food store, servicing the fine food connoisseur from their three California locations. Kudler’s business objective is to maximize profits by offering the highest quality products to its customers at competitive prices. In reviewing the data on the organization through the website, this paper discusses the organizational culture and structure, the leadership style and its effects on the company and the employees’ motivation, and the external and internal forces of change. A review of the organization will provide an insight to its ability to maintain success as forces of change are experienced.

Readiness for Change: An Assessment of Kudler Fine Foods
Kudler Fine Foods is the product of an inspiration. Tired of trying to locate gourmet foods for her own cooking, Kathy Kudler decided it was time to create her own one-stop shopping store for specialty foods and spirits that everyone in search for high-end foods would find not only convenient, but affordable as well. Kudler Fine Foods has demonstrated its ability to establish itself in the specialty food industry, however, it must be able to adapt to changes, both internal and external. A review of the company culture and leadership ship style will provide an insight to its ability to maintain success as forces of change are experienced. Organizational Culture

There are three organizational cultural views that are present in Kudler Fine Foods, the visible culture, the espoused culture, and the core beliefs. The visible culture is defined as how the company is viewed from outside the company, ie. what is heard, seen, or discussed about the company. The Kudler Fine Foods philosophy is “…highly satisfied employees create highly satisfied customers, so we intend to provide a total rewards system that is above the market.” (Kudler Fine Foods – Policies & Procedures, 2005), and is demonstrated by the awards that are given to employees for outstanding performance. Awards like Associate of the Month, Store Associate of the Year, and Company Associate of the Year are a few examples. Another excellent example is the Discretionary Spot Bonuses. These bonuses are provided by the store managers for instant rewards for employees who have gone above and beyond. “The store managers can give these $10 - $25 awards at any time, as they see fit.” (Kudler Fine Foods – Policies & Procedures, 2005). Another visible example would be the benefits that are provided to full-time employees. Typical benefits such as a 401(k) savings plan, and health care insurance are visible. Additionally, some non-typical benefits are six paid holidays and a vacation benefits starting a 5 days a year. Core beliefs are “principles that are widely shared, that operate unconsciously, and that are considered nonnegotiable.” (Gomez-Mejia & Balkin, 2002, p5). The Kudler Fine Foods’ mission statement emphasizes their core belief, “provide our customers the finest in selected foodstuffs, wines, and related needs in an unparalleled customer environment.” (Kudler Fine Foods Home, 2005). Excellence in All We Do comes to mind when speaking of Kudler Fine Foods. Kudler Fine Foods has a rigorous structured training program that all employees have to pass. The training program consists of three weeks of OJT, plus additional workshops throughout the year. All management positions have to complete additional management workshops as well. The overall idea is to have knowledgeable and professional employees. Organizational Structure

The organizational structure of vertical dimension is what Kudler Fine Foods is demonstrating through their leadership style. There are five areas that need to be identified when it comes to vertical dimension: unity of command, authority-responsibility-accountability, span of control, centralization/decentralization, and formalization. Unity of command in the Kudler Fine Foods organization is seen by the...
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