November 6, 2011
Strategy Recommendation for L.L.Bean
Founded in 1912, L.L.Bean, located in Freeport Maine, is a global company with annual sales of $1.5 billion. In order for L.L.Bean to remain a profitable private retailer of men’s, women’s and children’s clothing, indoor furnishings, and outdoor gear for the avid outdoorsman, the company needs to continually reinvent themselves to stay ahead of the competition. L.L.Bean has remained profitable with only one year not showing profits; however, the leadership team cannot take advantage of these successes as the buyer continues to reinvent how they want to be sold to, serviced, and communicated with. The purpose of this paper is to identify best value discipline, generic strategy, and grand strategy for the organization and recommend a strategy or combination of strategies L.L.Bean should implement. Best Value Discipline
The best value discipline is simply, how the buyer perceives value of what they are purchasing which is either through the operational excellence, customer intimacy or product leadership. The strategy behind operational excellence is to focus on the efficiencies in operations without pushing cost or being inconvenient to the buyer. Customer intimacy is a consultative approach to the consumer and customizing products and services to fit with the consumer. Product leadership is being one step ahead and offering a consistent, quality product that is considered innovative and forward thinking. By order of importance, L.L.Bean leads the charge with operational excellence, followed by product leadership and then customer intimacy; however, L.L.Bean by far is the leader in operational excellence with customer satisfaction being the forerunner, the lifetime guarantee on all of their products, quality shipment control, and most recently began offering no shipping fees with no minimum and offers free shipment returns. L.L.Bean throughout the years has continually...