EZ-Pleeze Food Company has adopted a market-oriented organizational culture. The company took an outward thinking strategy by developing other potato and corn products in the market. The reason for the changes was to get ahead of the challenges it has experienced in the market. EZ-Pleeze is competitive, and it has created an updated strategy to become the top producer of corn in the United States within three years (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). Also, the company has a hierarchical organizational structure. The corporate cultures under the hierarchical structures value power and control. Tim Burnes is the founder and the CEO of the company. He is at the top of the hierarchy and influences the board of directors (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d). The directors are placed ahead of the shareholders in the organizational hierarchy. The structure is arranged in a way where the managers show power over the staff. There is the director of marketing, chief of operations, director of research and development, and the director controlling manufacturing and production within the firm. Although there is a hierarchical model showing control of the managers in all organizational processes, the organization values the employees. Generally, the organization views the various transactions as exchanges for the value offered to customers.
The mission of the company describes its market position by stating it is the fifth-largest potato and corn company in the United States. The purpose also describes what they offer to customers. Also, the identity of the company is shown from the mission statement as it indicates the quality of the products and services they provide to customers. The company also provides its own identity by stating ways in which they offer the services different from competitors. Being different helps in maintaining a competitive advantage in the current market.
The company has a short and simple vision statement. The vision is not specific because it states they want to be in the top three categories in corn and potato products. Also, the vision does not indicate how they are going to achieve the goal. EZ-Pleeze has to beat the competitors to be in the top three list of the best companies in the country.
Strategic Decision-Making Structure
Structure of the Strategic Team
The strategic planning team found in the company is composed of a group of six people. The individuals are involved in a multidivisional structure where each division represented a separate business center. The structure of the strategic team would be considered functional as it consists of the CEO, CFO, chief of operations, and the executive assistant. The operational structure divides the staff according to functionality and speciality.
The CEO of EZ-Pleeze is the head of day-to-day operations in the company. Tim Burnes, as the CEO, speaks on behalf of the company when dealing with other stakeholders(EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). He also directs the corporate members and influences the board of directors on ways to handle the shareholders in the organization. The board of directors in the company represents the stakeholders. Generally, the CEO makes decisions that are directly linked to the shareholders.
The chief of operations in the company oversees the functional line managers. Brian Jansen ensures that all activities within a day run smoothly without interference (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). The practical line managers within the organization report to him on ways to improve the operations. Generally, the chief of activities makes the final decision on what to adopt to improve daily processes.
EZ-Pleeze has a very active director. He manages the marketing department within the organization. Kerrington helps in all activities related to advertising and branding (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). Moreover, the marketing director controls the channels used in the advertisement (Smith, 2017). Also, he influences the current vision by representing the company by developing healthy marketing initiatives. The director of marketing has staff working under him, and they are liable for reporting every activity happening within a day.
Michael Orenson is given the duty of heading the manufacturing and production department. As the director in the business unit, he influences the efficiency and quality of the final products. Also, he determines the environmental impacts of the products and limits to manageable levels. Orenson coordinates all activities involved in production to meet the expected demand in the market (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). The company is engaged in the mission of maintaining old customers and attracting new ones in the market. Using the director of marketing, the products can be changed to suit customer's demands in the market.
In the structure, Mary Miller heads the research and development department. Miller influences the creation of new ideas to improve product development. Customer needs and preferences are changing with innovations. Miller ensures the company develops the products to fit the market trends (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). Her expertise will be used to push the company to be in the top three positions in the market.
The chief financial officer in the company is Karen Haley. She is entrusted with the duty of attracting investors in the market and providing accurate financial reporting in the firm (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). Generally, the chief financial officer ensures the company's financials meet the regulations in the market and maintaining good relations with investors.
Internal and External Influences
The company has been involved in constant communication with customers. The culture has made the company develop loyal customers in the market because it ensures their needs are met continually. EZ-Pleeze helps in providing various resources for all the employees allowing them to have different opportunities for development and growth in the market. The internal factor has assisted the workers in developing morale and increased engagement to all the tasks provided to them. Another internal factor within the company is the pricing. The company works hard to offer low prices for its quality products to all customer segments. Also, the high costs of technology amounting to $20 million caused a problem with the stakeholders (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). The financial instability put the company in a lower position because the stakeholders failed to continue investing with the company.
The most prominent external influence in the company was the competitors. The two competitors in the company included Gold Starch Foods and Prime Spuds Industries (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). The competitors affect the firm negatively because of a loss in sales. Another external factor affecting company operations is government regulation. Changes in government laws influence internal actions because they can limit the innovation process and control production activities. Also, the economy affects the company negatively because it challenges the evaluation of the costs of production and efficiency of its operations after every three years. The external influences have limited growth of the company in a competitive environment.
Current Strategic Plan
Advantages and Disadvantages
Strategic decision making within the firm has benefits to the entire organization. One of the advantages of strategic decision-making is that it puts the customers first. The company perceives the customers as the center of their operations. EZ-Pleeze stays in constant communication with the customers to engage them in product development and marketing initiatives. It keeps the customers informed to commit them with the development of their products. Another advantage of the company is that it has a robust, innovative approach. The company has focused on being creative and healthy by offering various customers in the market with quality products. The company used market research to realize the customers wanted foods that tasted well and more robust. They invested in equipment to make such foods, and the strategy worked because it attracted new customers.
EZ-Pleeze has faced challenges in its pursuit to grow. The company has a limited product line, and it has been met with resistance to grow worldwide. The company needs to focus on expansion worldwide to develop its profitability in the market. Expansion to other countries will expose the company to new opportunities that would assist in improving customer satisfaction (Rothaermel, 2016). The other competitors have already invested in foreign markets, hindering EZ-Pleeze from being the top producer of corn and potato products. Also, the company is limited in terms of production capacity. EZ-Pleeze produces a limited number of products, and it has few locations where the customers could access the products. The company has invested less in marketing and advertising, making it hard to gain new customers in the market. It has been involved in raising prices to cover the costs incurred in production. Investing in marketing and expansion to other countries expand its opportunities in the market (Nickols, 2016). The development of the product line will lead to more profits that finance the decision to start expanding to different locations to offer its services.
Importance of SWOT Analysis in Strategic Planning in EZ-Pleeze
The main objective of developing a SWOT analysis in the company is to show how EZ-Pleeze is prepared to deal with threats. Also, it shows how it intends to take the opportunities in the market. The company's position is the market is active, indicating that it can take advantage of the facilities within the industry to create a higher level of success.
The main goal of the company is developing a strategic plan offering a higher value as compared to competitors in the market. The competitors such as Gold Starch Foods and Prime Spuds Industries have competitive advantages in different areas, which forces the company to develop its innovation by investing in research and development. As a result, EZ-Pleeze needs to develop a successful strategy to overtake all the competitors in the market. The company has to utilize all strengths to get rid of the weaknesses the company faces while offering services (Arend et al., 2017). Also, the company should establish a plan to tackle all the external threats in the market. The actions are possible when a SWOT analysis is done to evaluate the capability of the organization to satisfy the customers in the market. EZ-Pleeze has to understand the external environment and how it limits business operations. Understanding the external environment makes the company know how to use the opportunities presented to reach a higher level of success as compared to Gold Starch Foods and Prime Spuds Industries (EZ-Pleeze Food Company, n.d.). The analysis done in the SWOT analysis supports this procedure becaus...
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