Topic: Sustainable Development
Sustainable development in its basic definition is used in reference to a pattern of resource use that ensure the need of human are met while ensuring that the environment is preserved. The main issue in this approach is ensuring development and sustaining resources so as humans need can be met in the present and future (Andrews et al, 2003). Sustainable development is development that meets present needs without creating compromise with future generations’ ability of using the same resources to meet their needs (Boiral, 2003). Thus sustainable development under this consideration involves ensuring capacity and maintaining natural system with changes in social composition and needs. The use of sustainability is therefore in reference to creating equilibrium with ecological system. Sustainability is a result of increased concern on the environment and the need to conserve it and thus involves setting limits for growth and development of a steady state economy so as to address the environmental issues.
The modern day operational environment is characterized by high levels of strife and uncertainty. Volatility is the key factors that determines the nature of operations and is cited as being a result of nature of the environment (Boiral, 2003). A look at the environment shows that the number of variables that define the nature of the environment are many and dynamic in nature. Others are of the view that inflation and high cost of living were the key driving factors that led to the crisis. It is therefore quite clear that the operational environment is quite complex and the number of variables that have to be put into considerations are many and their behavior complex leading to difficulties in planning a strategic development (Andrews et al, 2003).
Topic: Corporate Social Responsibility
Corporate social responsibility, deals with the responsibilities that for-profit organizations and corporations owe to the societies within which they are located in and operate. It also involves the corporates involving their needs into the needs of other stakeholders within their daily strategic decision making process. The industry in which the firm operates in may be narrow or may be broad, thus this determines the number of stakeholders to which the firm has a ‘responsibility’ to (Kotler and Lee). When companies overlook their profits and start looking at their role in the society, it could also be termed as corporate social responsibility. This will involve the firm linking itself to transparency, ethical values, complying with legal requirements, ethical values and respect for the communities within which they operate. Corporate social responsibility should not only be occasional in community servitude, but it should improve brand development, partner selection, decision making and the hiring practices (Werther and Chandler).
Corporate social responsibility also has its downsides, or disadvantages. For one, it could just be a strategy to make the company look good while the benefits may just be superficial and not at all beneficial to the company or to the society as a whole. Another disadvantage is that some corporates have a tarnished image, and this may rub off on some charity organization trying to really help the community, and thus spoil the whole idea of charity. Some corporates also undertake to corporate social responsibility in a bid to exploit the community rather than to aid or support it thus spoiling the name of that term (Kotler and Lee). They do so to enhance their profits rather than the interest of the community. In the long-run, corporate social responsibility could help a growing enterprise to grow in ranks and build a strong a loyal customer base, and in the process maximize on its profits and do well for the environment and the community in the process (Kotler and Lee).
Topic: Multinational Companies
Artcles 43 and 48 of the European Commission stipulates that individuals and companies in any of member states are free to venture in any of the countries (Cattoir 2007). Though companies could have engaged in business activities in other countries even before EU existed, presense of these two articles smplifies processes of establishng and running operations in different member countries. The artciles provides procedures that have to be followed in the process of ensuring that stakeholders follow the agreed rules. However, it does not mean that these operators would not be subject to member countries’ rules and regulations. The articles also call for member countries to drop regulations that could inhibit the smooth running of businesses in the region. The application of articles in member countries has been successful tghrought their existence. In addition to having the freedom to establish physical operation facilites in any of member countries, articles 43 and 48 makes it possible for individuals and companies to provide services for short periods of time without having to register with authorities. This helps in reducing bureacucy that wopuld befall on companies as they struggle with registration processes. This also makes it easy for organisations to deal with taxation challenges (Cattoir 2007).
These articles have resuklted to decrease in state regulation of companies registerd in fellow EU-member countries. Individual countries have been embarking on a slow pace of reforming their trade regimes in order to provide equal opportunities for lcal and foreign firms. This has, however, not been easy–countries still struggle to retain their old trade practicies albeit heavy pressure from the Union. Failure by all nations to redue their requirements has resulted to consistent complaints by individual companies. This has beren done through the European Court of Justice (ECJ). For instance, Mark & Spencer, a British based company took the UK authoritioes to ECJ regarding treatement that was not consistent with the articles (Amatucci, 2006).
Topic: Supply Chain Management
A firm’s decisions on supply, more so international deployment of resources, distribution facilities and manufacturing determines its performance. Studies mention that on the effects of manufacturing flexibility, and further warns that the comparing of agile manufacturing to agility gives on a narrow understanding and thus gives rise to another four flexibility constructs that have an effect on the supply chain agility namely; logistics, product development manufacturing and sourcing flexibilities (Weber, 2002). Thus the assumption of this theory is that there are the above mentioned component flexibilities, which also have two dimensions; adaptability and the range. Supply chain is affected by the level of global competition environment and the level of flexibility in the information technological field, and thus it impacts on its global competitive performance. Thus it is safe to assume by the combination and use of the components of flexibility mentioned above, that is, logistics, product development manufacturing and sourcing flexibilities, an organization’s supply chain agility can be obtained. Also, it is also assumed in this model that adaptability and range are considered to be positive motivators of flexibility and of course supply chain agility. An organization that is in a very competitive global industry will have to improve its agility better than that of its competitors, in order to produce earlier and to deliver faster its products. And this statement is what supports the next assumption which is; the intensity of the competition in the immediate global environment in which an organization operates, affects its supply chain agility positively (Skjott-Larsen, 2007).
Topic: Competition in Business
A history of our competitors will also help us in evaluating our competitor. We will get to know their strengths and weaknesses (George, 2008). At this point we will improve on their weaknesses and convert their weakness into our strength. This will help us in gaining clients who are not satisfied with weaknesses experienced by using our competitors’ services.
The other way we are going to handle competition is by going onto a joint venture with one of our minor competitors. Through this we will be able to pool resources and combine our ideas and thoughts to come up with more and better services to meet the needs of our clients. Through this we will be able to expand our service to many areas and hence beat out our competitors. We are going to start by establishing the market locally and then expand it to other users
Improving performance is gong to be our next strategy in fighting competition. We are going to make sure we provide fast and efficient services at an affordable rate. We are going to make sure that the small message service to email conversion takes a very short time so that the customers can continue using our services. In order to win in business managers and investors must have tools to understand, track and improve their companies’ performance. Various performance indicators can be used to analyze performance (Gildersleeve, 1999).
Advertising is going to be the other way we are going to fight competition. After taking all the other measures in order to fight competition, we are going to capitalize on advertisement. We are going to hire a creative advertising company and analyze the best advertising strategies that are different from our competitors because the service already exists in the market. It is through advertisement that our clients are going to know about us as well as our competitors. We are going to use an advertising strategy that will make our competitors feel threatened by our greatness.
Amatucci, A. (2006). International tax law. Kluwer Law, London
Andrews, R. N. L ., D. Amaral. N. Darnall D. R. Gallagher. D. Edwards, A. Hutson, C. D’Amore, L. Sun and Y.Zhang. (2003). Environmental Management systems: Do They Improve Performance? Chapel Hill, NC: The University of North Carolina.
Boiral, O. (2003). ISO?9000: Outside the iron cage. Organization science ,14(6)
Cattoir, P., (2007). A history of European “tax packages”, European Commission, Luxembourg.
George J. S., (2008). “Competition,” The New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics. Abstract.
Gildersleeve, R. (1999) .Wining Business: How to Use Financial Analysis and Benchmarks to Outscore Your Competition. Gulf Professionals publishing.
Kotler, P. & Nancy L., (2005). Corporate social responsibility: doing the most good for your company and your cause. New York: John Wiley and Sons.
Skjott-Larsen, T. (2007). Managing the global supply chain. Copenhagen: Copenhagen Business School Press DK.
Weber, M. M. (2002). Measuring supply chain agilityin the virtual organization. International journal of Physical Distribution & Logistics Management , 32 (7), 577-590.
Werther, W. B. & David C., (2006). Strategic corporate social responsibility: stakeholders in a global environment. New York: SAGE.