Benihana of Tokyo

Topics: Dell, Japanese cuisine, Alienware Pages: 6 (1975 words) Published: October 9, 2006
Case Study: Matching Dell
MBA 661 – Operational Excellence

Dell corporation is a well known computer company incorporated in 1984. Dell Computer Company is the pioneer of the highly publicized business model called "Direct Model" in the personal computer industry. It had launched a method which attracted millions of customers across the world starting from personal use to small and medium size corporation use. Dell customized its computers to the individual need.

1) Describe and analyze Dell's process strategy (management philosophy, efficiencies, bottlenecks, supply chain partners, etc.). What's the advantage and disadvantage of their process model?

Dell computers

2) Discuss why Dell's competitors, such as IBM and HP, would stick to their process models.

3) As usual, the last part of the case study will focus on the current PC markets. Do some research in this market and pick up one major player (Dell, HP or IBM) to analyze their development strategies. For example, the merge of HP and Compaq, the deal between IBM and Leveno, or Dell's middle-age problems (decreasing marginal profits, product recalls, etc.)

Four Steps in the Cycle:

Value Identification:
Value identification concentrates on creating customer base. Identifying customers and looking into their needs. It focuses on how to fulfill these customer's needs with the best way possible. Benihana's value was created from the showmanship of the chef. Hiroaki Aoki after coming to the US grasped quickly the importance of offering to customers something different from any other restaurant in the country. He was in New York, the city of Broadway shows. Theatre is what people come here for and to get theatrical experience with their lunch or dinner, what better one would ask for? Benihana also wanted to serve their food in authentic Japanese style in the environment where customer would feel that they are really in Japan and having Japanese dish. The customer base was of the urban area business people who work and live in the city and would go for both lunch and dinner.

Value Design:
Value design is the second stage in value cycle, where firm would focus on the design of the product and the processes that they will be using to implement their value identification. Here firm would make sure that they deliver what they have promised. Firm has to be aware of customer's expectation and make sure of their satisfaction. It is here that the firm has to deal with the capacity and capability of what can be and what can not be done. Firm has to have internal and external supply chain in place. Banihana's value design was their style of serving, their historical authenticity and simplicity in preparing meals speedily. The dining area consisted of tepanyaki table (gas-fired steel griddle plate, with 9½" wooden ledge bordering it to hold the customers' plates). The exhaust hood was there to get rid of cooking steam and odors. Each table had 8 diners. The walls, ceilings, beams, artifacts and decorative lights came all from Japan. The training of the chef was integral to the business. All the chefs were highly trained. All were young, single, native Japanese and all were certified by three-year formal apprenticeship.

Value Execution:
This stage strictly depends on previous two stages. Here the firm delivers its product using the processes defined in earlier stage. The value execution is constrained by actions taken in value identification and design stages. It involves managing capacity, schedules, physical flows, information flows, technology and resources. The most important in the success of Benihana, highly trained chefs were given three to six month course in Japan to learn English and American manners and brought here from Japan under trade treaty agreement. To serve two of the tapanyaki tables there would be one chef and a waitress. The materials for the building were gathered from old houses in Japan. They were carefully...
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