To survive and thrive, an organization must create a competitive advantage. A competitive advantage is a product or service that an organization’s customers place a greater value on than similar offerings from a competitor. Unfortunately, competitive advantages are typically temporary because competitors often seek ways to duplicate the competitive advantage. In turn, organizations must develop a strategy based on a new competitive advantage.
When an organization is the first to market with a competitive advantage, it gains a first-mover advantage. The first-mover advantage occurs when an organization can significantly impact its market share by being first to market with a competitive advantage. As organizations develop their competitive advantages, they must pay close attention to their competition through environmental scanning. Environmental scanning is the acquisition and analysis of events and trends in the environment external to an organization. Information technology has the opportunity to play an important role in environmental scanning.
1. Business Dilemma
The Broadway Cafe has been in business since 1952 and has never had a single competitor in the neighborhood. One of your employees has heard a rumor that Starbucks might be opening a store a few blocks away. Your staff is worried and is looking to you to provide reassurance that the competition will not affect your business.
1.1 Determine a strategy for addressing your employees concerns, building loyalty among your customers, and remaining competitive in a changing market
1.2 Be sure to use information technology in your solutions including environmental scanning, competitive advantages, and first-mover advantages.
The threat of a new competitor in a market brings a lot of undue stress and angst to an already established business. A strategy needs to be established to address concerns of the employees and guiding them through the process of how to tackle new competition.
The first thing I would do is to hold a management meeting with my assistant managers and supervisors. They need to know all of the information first, as employees will look to them for guidance throughout this transition period. Ensure the management team that a new Starbucks opening in the area, isn’t a threat to our business, but a chance to improve and enhance our already successful operation.
The good thing about it being a Starbucks Coffee shop, is that they are a brand, meaning every single Starbucks globally operates the same, with a very similar menu, and identical policies and procedures. I would take the management team to another Starbucks and get them to sit and analyse how Starbucks operates. What do they do differently to us? What is their customer service like? How does their menu differ to ours? Do they prepare their food fresh on site like we do? By doing this environmental scanning we will be able to see what Starbucks is going to offer our neighborhood and what changes we can implement before they open that will minimize the potential damage to The Broadway Café. In terms of customer loyalty, we already have the upper hand in that we have a loyal customer base, but Starbucks is a big brand that is known all over the world and naturally our customer’s will be interested and will want to try it out. After the management team’s concerns have been met and dealt with I would hold a staff meeting for all staff to attend. Present the findings of how Starbucks operates and how we are going to bring the Broadway café into the 21st century with powerful technology and a stronger focus on customer service.
This is the perfect time to introduce a Broadway Café loyalty card that links with technology through the use of a smart phone app. By introducing a loyalty system, our customer’s are rewarded with their loyalty by receiving a free drink of their choice for every 10 drinks they purchase. By having an app that...
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