Topic: The Impact of Strategic Management Decisions – Wilkinson (Case Study)
M. M. Khan
Business Student -- 2nd year, 3rd quarter
Wilkinson & its Strategy
Businesses must respond to change in order to remain competitive. Developing appropriate strategies, which allow progress, is essential. Wilkinson was founded in 1930 as Wilkinson Cash Stores by James Kemsey Wilkinson and has remained largely in the hands of the founding family since its establishment. Wilkinson’s growth places it in the top 30 retailers and is a prime example of a business that has responded to changing customer needs throughout its history. It is one of England’s long-established retailers of a wide range of food, home, garden, office, health, and beauty products. Recently, it faced stringent competition from its competitors. Wilkinson needed to offset the effects of this offence by identifying new realms for greater opportunities. Over a span of two years it conducted extensive market research that abetted it to create a market strategy designed to continue growth by targeting a new market segment – the student population. However, the segment that Wilkinson opted for was not, in all likelihood, the outcome of a casual decision that the top managers made based upon stark intuition. The decision was rather dependent upon a formal, systematic, and comprehensive procedure that rationally allowed them to pursue this path.
The quest for a competitive advantage in this unique market segment began with Wilkinson’s mission aimed at rapid growth and increased stores across England. The mission is the first facet of the strategy-generating procedure. It is something that innumerable companies delineate to commence the procedure for optimum and sustainable market performance -- this procedure is known as the Strategic Management Process. But prior to exploring the first facet, the meaning and sole purpose of strategic management ought to be highlighted for better understanding. Also through the replenishing advantages that the strategic management process has to offer, one can get an insight into how tasks are simplified and organisational obstacles are prevented. The precautionary measures clearly reflect how challenges are solved.
Strategic Management -- What is it?
In its uttermost theoretical from, the top management’s plans to develop and sustain a competitive adva ntage is known as a strategy. It is a state whereby a company’s successful strategies cannot be easily duplicated by its competitors [‘Fundamentals of Strategic Management’, Chapter 1].
Strategic management on the other hand, is a process that entails defining the company’s mission, vision and objectives, developing policies and plans -- often in terms of projects and programs -- which are designed to achieve these objectives, and then allocating resources to implement the policies and plans, projects and programs [Wikipedia: ‘Strategic Management’]. In simple words, the strategic management process requires consideration in order to be formulated. However, strategic management necessitates the engagement of managers themselves in the studies to examine internal and external business elements, address the issues at hand, and take certain steps before a strategy can be formulated.
Therefore, the strategic management process, as indicated earlier, focuses on enabling a company to choose and implement a strategy that spawns one or several competitive advantages. A company possesses a competitive advantage when it is able to generate more economic value than that of its rival firms. Economic value is simply the difference between the perceived benefits gained by a customer who purchases a firm’s products or services and the full economic cost of these products or services. The size of a company’s competitive advantage is the difference between its own economic value and the economic value of...