Case 1 – Answers to Question 1:
There are social, political and economic forces affecting Superjuice from getting higher revenues annually. Its profits have also been stagnant for four straight years. Therefore, a new approach to management should be called for to revamp the company.
Let’s take a look at some of the factors that have affected Superjuice. There is no doubt Superjuice was the most successful juice drink maker for nearly twenty years. However, tastes and likes of consumers can change. What was good before may not necessarily suit the current consumer taste buds. As commented by Luisa’s son himself, “Superjuice is for kids”. This shows that the demands of the current youth have changed. They may look for types of juice that may not only be delicious, but possibly for something that can relate to them in terms of lifestyle, health, and trends. As such, changing trends may have generated less revenue than before. There were also upcoming players in the market. These new players continue to steal the market share with their latest and innovative drinks. The company has taken for granted that it is the market leader, and failed to see the threats of these new players.
In addition, creativity was not encouraged in Superjuice. There were employees who were keen on producing new drink flavours but the management was against the idea. Many young and dynamic employees left the company as they felt the management was not open to new ideas. Besides that, new marketing approaches and strategies were also not adopted. It limited itself to selling drinks to school kids alone. They failed to realize how well the competitors were doing in terms of introducing new marketing strategies to promote their latest drinks, such as setting up drink carts at outdoor festivals.
The culture of Superjuice is such that most of its employees are accustomed to the calm environment it is in now. It failed to realize that the world keeps changing rapidly. Therefore, innovative ideas are required to generate more revenue for the company. It cannot rely on past successes alone. Employees’ mindset must change. By using the same old methods of doing things and functioning the same way as they were twenty years ago, will of course continue to make growth stagnant.
Flexibility from the management was also not apparent in Superjuice. Fanciful employees who worked in unconventional ways in terms of their dressing and work culture were immediately disciplined, instead of being given the chance to prove their capabilities. This has reflected negatively as more employees were leaving due to the tight management control.
Case 1 – Answers to Question 2:
To begin a transformation at Superjuice, Luisa needs to have a clear vision and methodology that includes understanding of the company, market, customers, and employees. The culture, policies and practices and its current management style all need to be changed first as they have all paralyzed creativity, innovation and motivation among employees.
Here are some suggested ideas to begin with the new transformation. A Creativity and Innovative team can be created as a new team dedicated to research of new drink flavours and ways of marketing it (Unknown 2008). This team will be totally independent from other teams. Dress codes and work culture of the members of the team will be more flexible. For example, members of this team are allowed to wear casual clothes and given the freedom to choose where they want to have their brainstorming sessions to encourage creativity in them. Thus, employees from other teams will not question the flexibility given to this team as it is known as the Creativity and Innovative team. By setting up such a team will show that Luisa is ready to give Superjuice a new transformation.
In addition, Luisa must provide a new direction for the company. Employees should be encouraged to indulge in training sessions that can educate them on product information, market share, competitors, etc. Make them stop and think about what they have been working on over the years. Competitions can also be organized to encourage employees from all levels in the organization to participate in sharing of ideas and creativity. This will definitely provide motivation for employees to be more creative and innovative.
Case 1 – Answers to Question 3:
Here are some suggested ways that can make Superjuice into a learning organization. Firstly, a new organizational culture will be introduced, whereby self-development and creativity will be taken more seriously. Employees are encouraged to attend training sessions that will enhance their skill and knowledge.
Secondly, there will be new ways of doing things. Employees are not expected to think of new ideas merely in boardroom meetings. They are given the flexibility to do their brainstorming sessions anywhere they want on certain days of the week. For example, every Wednesday is allocated as brainstorming day at Starbucks amidst coffee. This provides a new learning experience for employees who have been doing the same work the same way in the past two decades.
Thirdly, seek employee feedback regarding new changes and measure their levels of satisfaction. Not all employees may agree with the ideas decided by the management. There are bound to be some who think they have better ideas to revitalize the product or improve on it. The management needs to listen to these peoples’ ideas.
Next, goals of the company will be freely communicated to all employees. For example, if Superjuice comes up with a new drink flavor, the management can inform its employees regarding its target market, and how much profit it expects to achieve within the first quarter. Employees are well-informed about decision making from the management. It promotes exchange of information between employees and management and thus, creating a more knowledgeable workforce.
Finally, Luisa can do the following to get employees to think of new ways to revitalize the product line. Organize competitions to rebrand the product in terms of its logo and packaging. The Research and Development department can make some evaluation and keep track of what products have been popular before. Implement a reward system to reward employees who concoct new drink flavors that are liked by members of the public or those who can come up with some catchy jingles or slogans for the Marketing department. She must also assure the employees that flexibility in the organization is encouraged and employ the right people to do the job.