Toyota Motor Corporation is a diversified corporation that sells its automobiles in approximately 200 nations and regions worldwide, focused primarily in Japan, North America, Europe, and Asia. Toyota estimates that it employs close to 1 million individuals worldwide, including dealers. Meanwhile, Toyota is growing, as is evident in the 13% increase in revenues from 2005 to 2006 to a level of roughly 180 billion dollars. Net profit for Toyota Motor Corporation increased 17% over 2005 to 12 billion dollars in 2006.
Toyota is a strong competitor in the automobile industry. Most industry analysts believe Toyota is the leading competitor for the consumer dollar. The corporation, to generate increases in sales, revenues, margins, and profits over the last few years, has expanded upon several successful strategies claiming its position as a profitable automobile manufacturer. Toyota’s many strengths can be used to maintain this position, and existing market opportunities can be capitalized on to stimulate growth. However, weaknesses present in the company and threats evident in the industry need to be appropriately addressed to prevent permanent pitfalls to Toyota’s ongoing success. Without exception, the evident strengths, present weaknesses, available opportunities, and imposing threats directly influence Toyota’s continued success as the leader in the auto manufacturing industry.
In an extremely competitive industry, the Toyota Motor Corporation leads the industry in numerous areas. Toyota’s strengths are the foundation of what drives it to be constantly increasing revenues from year to year, emerging as the new leading manufacturer in the industry, and performing the way it does. The company possesses multiple strengths such as its impressive brand recognition, unique “Toyota Way,” and innovative “JIT,” or, just in time production principles. Toyota’s brand recognition is the most powerful in the industry. Businesses across the globe view Toyota’s management techniques, “the Toyota Way,” as extremely effective and innovative. Many manufacturers in various industries have implemented the “JIT,” production process pioneered by Toyota to increase profits by minimizing unnecessary inventory costs.
Toyota is a faceless organization. No names or individuals hold up or represent the company name like Bill Gates of Microsoft or Steve Jobs of Apple. Toyota’s brand has a bulletproof reputation that simply sells cars. Out of 100 companies, the Toyota brand was 9th most recognizable, being the strongest in the automobile industry. BMW and Mercedes were two other automobile manufacturers among the 100. While most industry articles on automakers report on their earnings, or continued lack of such, before anything else, Toyota receives impressive articles reporting on the quality of their cars. Most recently, Toyota’s growing line of hybrids has contributed to and enhanced their strong reputation in the industry. This quality reputation can most likely be related to the attitude that “Toyota really believes and nurtures the idea that they should be able to build a car with no problems or flaws.”
The “Toyota Way”
The “Toyota Way” is to always watch and listen to what the consumer wants, and continuously improve products to fit the particular need and desire. There is no end to improvement if the supplier is always trying to meet the demands of the customer. However, the “Toyota Way” is about more than product. Employing around 1 million individuals, there exists a dedicated human resource army from every culture sharing ideas and working with the same concepts and philosophy of doing business. Suppliers are often contracted without negotiation of cost, as long as they can meet the standards and perform to the processes of Toyota. These management techniques are unique to the business world, and have inspired the model of...