In this paper we are going to take a further look into Total Quality Management (TQM) and we are going to integrate Car Toys strategic plan into the picture. The strategic plan contains four major areas, the mission of the company, the vision of the company, the goals the company has, and finally the objectives of the organization. Strategic planning is an organization’s process of defining its strategy, or direction, and making decisions on allocating its resources to pursue this strategy, including its capital and people. Various business analysis techniques can be used in strategic planning, including SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) and PEST analysis (Political, Economic, Social, and Technological analysis).
Strategies are different from tactics in that:
1. They are proactive and not re-active as tactics are.
2. They are internal in source and the business venture has absolute control over its application.
3. Strategy can only be applied once, after that it is process of application with no unique element remaining.
4. The outcome is normally a strategic plan which is used as guidance to define functional and divisional plans, including Technology, Marketing, etc.
Strategic Planning is the formal consideration of an organization’s future course. All strategic planning deals with at least one of three key questions:
– “What do we do?”
-“For whom do we do it?”
-“How do we excel?”
In many organizations, this is viewed as a process for determining where an organization is going over the next year or more typically 3 to 5 years, although some extend their vision to 20 years. In order to determine where it is going, the organization needs to know exactly where it stands, then determines where it wants to go and how it will get there. The resulting document is called the “strategic plan”. It is also true that strategic planning may be a tool for effectively plotting the direction of a company; however, strategic planning itself cannot foretell exactly how the market will evolve and what issues will surface in the coming days in order to plan your organizational strategy. Therefore, strategic innovation and tinkering with the ‘strategic plan’ have to be a cornerstone strategy for an organization to survive the turbulent business climate. .It reflects the optimistic view of the organization’s future.
Now that we have discussed what strategic planning is let us take a look at the mission, vision, objectives, and goals of Car Toys. The mission of Car Toys is to be the premier team of experts committed to providing high quality mobile electronic products and services to meet our customer’s expectations. The vision of Car Toys is to be the best place to work and the best place to buy. Car Toys has many goals and objectives, these are just a few. First is to provide the best products and services to meet or exceed their customers expectations, next one is to hire the best people, and with that is to provide the most update to date training and insure that training is an on going process. We only hire the best people because that is how we are going to deliver the best products and services.
Now we going to take a look at Car Toys management style and compare it with the management style of Stereo Warehouse who is a local competitor in the Seattle market. With the strategic plan that Car Toys has in place and the fact that they are always trying to improve the customer experience, for both internal and external customers, I would say that Car Toys has a very quality focused management style and corporate philosophy. There is a saying that has be used around the company since every manager took the OZ training in 2006, see it, do it, own it. This philosophy empowers any employee to solve a problem or correct an issue if they see something that needs attention. To handle a problem without having to climb the corporate ladder is crucial to TQM and it shows that Car Toys is progressive in handling any issue that may arise.
Unlike Car Toys Stereo Warehouse does not have a clear strategic plan. Each employee is working for themselves and the owners are in the business for profit not to build customer relationship’s and generate repeat business. Stereo Warehouse has a very policy focused customer interaction style, were as Car Toys will solve the problem to make the customer happy whether it is part of the policy or not. Stereo Warehouse does not bend to give an example here is one of their customers comments, “I would not go there if I was you!!! Stereo warehouse is the worst place to buy equipment!!!! p.s I was in the army at the time and in uniform and still couldn’t get service after I drove two hours to get there because their product failed! ~!” (City Search, 2008). As you can see these two companies’ have very different management styles and a different view on what TQM is.
Stereo Warehouse does need customers; they focus on bargain buys, warehouse style shopping, fast installations, and sales people that are casuals dressed, no shirt and tie. They enjoy bashing their competition and they do not foster a good business relationship with their competitors. It is taught to bash Car Toys if one of our potential customers enters their store. From what I have seen, TQM is not a standard practice at Stereo Warehouse. On the other hand quality is Car Toys main focus, with the strategic plan they have put into to place and communicated to the entire company, to the focus of the retail staff to solve any issue to the customer’s satisfaction and provide the best products and services to our customers. We do not bash our competition; we show the customer what we do and why we do it better.
As far as Car Toys integrating any practices, that Stereo Warehouse uses, will be highly unlikely. I would find more probable that Stereo Warehouse will more than likely integrate our practices into their culture as well as adopting their own unique strategic plan to insure they stay competitive in this ever growing market. Hopefully Stereo Warehouse will realize that TQM is now becoming a business standard and should be adopted by their organization to insure success in the future.