A Case Study: Soichiro Honda

Topics: Honda, Soichiro Honda, Hamamatsu Pages: 6 (2305 words) Published: October 13, 2011
“There is a Japanese proverb that literally goes 'Raise the sail with your stronger hand,' meaning you must go after the opportunities that arise in life that you are best equipped to do.” * Soichiro Honda

“Planning helps in forecasting the future, makes the future visible to some extent. It bridges between where we are and where we want to go. Planning is looking ahead.” * www.wikipedia.org
Soichiro Honda, a simple apprentice boy, able to create the multi billion dollars business empire that the Honda Motor Company is today, what were the strategies and planning that he implemented that got him success, and took his small business into each and every part of the world. Honda always believed that knowledge is the key to success in business and that is why he always appreciated ideas of each and every one in his company. As an apprentice automobile mechanic till 1936, Soichiro Honda was able to study the automobile industry from the basics, acquiring great deal of knowledge about the workings of machines, and the common faults in automobiles. And then when he was having difficulty making piston rings, he understood he needed a higher knowledge, and he went to Hamamatsu High School of Technology to acquire adequate knowledge but not a diploma. To prosper in business therefore, it is important to have sufficient knowledge of your industry, which you have to endure to update to remain abreast of modern trends. Another strategy that Honda executed in his business, which made his business hugely successful, was to enlarge it into foreign lands. The US market allowed it to explore a huge market with boundless purchasing power. This enabled him to sell much more of his motorcycles than would have been possible if his business had remained in Japan only. Another big hit was when everyone thought the US market was not potential to sell motorcycles, because of the low image of motorcycles then in the US, the Honda Motor Company thought just the opposite. And in just five years Honda had achieved their dream in the US. They had replaced the negative image of motorcycle with that of fun and excitement, making millions of Americans happily desiring to own theirs. Another strategy that has always been very much close to the Honda Company is setting big and achievable goals. After the “Cub” when the “Super Cub” was ready to be produced, 30,000 Super Cubs a month was predicted to be sold which was much more than the then prevailing market of 20,000 per month for all two-wheelers. As most of the American customers were the “black leather jacket” customers the Honda Company had also promoted sales of larger and more of luxurious bikes as that was best suit as per the then market requirement of the U.S. Another strategy of getting publicity and popularity was by winning the various races such as “Isle of Man” races in 1961, then 1965 Formula I, 1996 Britisher Jack Brabham, who got eleven victories in Formula II, but as and when the company was done with its goal i.e. gaining popularity they withdrew all its cars and motorcycles from the various races. Mr. Soichiro Honda along with Mr. Fujisawa have made it possible for Honda to come to a stage where it is today, from such a small scale business by way of setting big achievable goals and all the various kinds of flabbergasting and stunning ideas and strategies and planning to achieve such targets.

Planning Process

“If you hire only those people you understand, the company will never get people better than you are. Always remember that you often find outstanding people among those you don't particularly like.” * Soichiro Honda

Organizational strategy is closely linked to market strategy. When a company first starts to move into the global marketplace, it should decide how it will behave in various markets. Companies with a multinational strategy tend to improve a decentralized organizational structure. This structure drives decision-making down to...
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