Strategic Planning and Management Insights

Amazon doubles down on cargo planes and enters pre-packaged meal delivery as part of its growth strategy.

[fa icon="calendar'] May 11 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Supply Chain, Business strategy, Business news, global strategy

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When you're the size of Amazon your business growth strategy overlaps with multiple areas, sectors and industries.

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What Instagram can teach you about strategic planning and business strategy.

[fa icon="calendar'] March 28 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Social media, Business strategy, Business news

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As a Manager, CEO, or Executive Director you might not be the one using Instagram in your organization as part of your strategy, you can however learn from it when it comes to implementing your own business strategy and change management initiatives.

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Playboy changes their business strategy

[fa icon="calendar'] October 15 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Business strategy, Business news

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 When: " what we've always done" stops working, what do you do?

It was recently announced that playboy would stop publishing images of naked models in their print edition which, aside from their editorials was their claim to fame.

Why would a business so drastically change their business strategy unless they had to?

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Amazon Prime Business Strategy for Customer Aquisition

[fa icon="calendar'] July 15 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Sales, Marketing, Business strategy, Business news

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Amazon customer strategy business

So today is July 15th and it's Amazon Prime day, declared a day with better deals than Black Friday. I took a peek, and so far it's pretty good. 

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Costco's great pricing strategy and business model.

[fa icon="calendar'] June 10 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Business strategy, Business news

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Great strategies are all around us. As a business nerd I love to see businesses that take risks and put major bets on things that will make an impact on their bottom line in both the short term and long term.

This month there were two news stories that covered Costco's business model and their strategy for growth.

First was the case study on using roast chickens and hot d

ogs as loss leaders to get people into the store. Despite the fact they could make millions more by increasing the price to match inflation, they chose to keep their prices where they are because it's better for business. 

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Enterprising non profits: a strategy for success

[fa icon="calendar'] May 21 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Business news, Success Stories

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Today I got to host and event with the Vancouver Board of Trade small business council on creating social impact as part of your business practices. 

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Zappos Strategy: Get them off the bus.

[fa icon="calendar'] May 08 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Business management, Business strategy, Business news

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It's been said that culture eats strategy for breakfast. In this case, culture has taken a bite out of the workforce over at Zappos.

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Alberta's new strategic plan.

[fa icon="calendar'] March 27 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Strategic planning, Business news

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With depressed oil prices, Alberta had to update their fiscal strategy to be less dependant on the resource sector, and return to financial stability.

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2014 Alberta Business Profile

[fa icon="calendar'] March 13 / by Jenna Sedmak posted in Entrepreneurship, Business news

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The 2014 Alberta Business Profile has a ton of great information and statistics about small businesses in the province. The PDF document contains easy to understand charts, graphics, and write ups about the small business economy in Alberta. Entrepreneurship is alive and well in Alberta, and from the 2014 numbers, the future looks promising. The easy to navigate PDF can be found HERE.

The profile highlights that:

- In 2013, Alberta’s small businesses generated a GDP exceeding the national average

- Small businesses in Alberta create 35% of all private sector employment in the province

- Between 2003 and 2013, the number of small businesses in Alberta increased by nearly 19 percent

- In 2012 small businesses contributed to 25 percent of Alberta’s GDP

More information for all things related to business in Alberta can be found on albertacanada.com

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McDonald's updates its strategy to rekindle customers and address fast casual competition.

[fa icon="calendar'] March 03 / by Anthony Taylor posted in Business strategy, Business news

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strategy consumer consultant

I can't think of an industry that is more competitive than restaurants and fast food.

With the changes in food quality from a production perspective, and the changes in demand from a consumer perspective, it has shaken up with fast food industry and taken a bite (pardon the pun) from some of the big players that have been slow to adapt and change.

Their previous strategy got away from their core competencies, and instead of focusing on their customers and their needs, they tried to replicate certain aspects of the "fast casual" trend without changing their core business to offer more value in the process.

That strategy did not work and margins and profits continued to fall. This forced a change in the leadership, and with it came a new CEO.

Since McDonalds is such a big company (who's stock price is analyzed constantly) there are many people suggesting what their new strategy should be.

According to their CEO (via: Business insider) their strategic priorities include:

  1. Improving food quality and adapting to consumer preferences. ( A must)
  2. Looking at their global business because that's where they still have room to grow.
  3. Using technology to increase customer service.

http://www.businessinsider.com/mcdonalds-new-ceo-strategy-2015-3

 

If your business is in a place where it needs to drastically adapt its strategy:

First: Look at the internal and external environments that your company operates in. Don't make assumptions. Get hard facts through research, focus groups and other primary and secondary research.

Second: Figure out who your core customer is and how you can best service them.

Third: Figure out what your competitive advantage is or how you can create one based on your existing competencies.

 

No matter what happens with McDonalds, their new strategy (if it's successful) will have an impact on the rest of the world, even beyond restaurants and fast food.

For example: Imagine if they start using guacamole in their burgers.

How many avocados do you think they would need every year? What will their impact be on producers?

They will increase the demand, but while also demanding the lowest price possible.

Or if they sell more burgers, it will further increase the price of beef for all consumers (Households included)

 

McDonalds has a big stick in the world of business, and no matter what industry you are in, their strategy affects the world around it.

So when you're building your strategy, don't forget to think about the people, and businesses that might have an in-direct affect on your business as well.

As far as McDonalds goes only time will tell if their strategy will re-attract their lost market share.

Sources:

http://www.qsrmagazine.com/fast-casual/tale-two-brands

http://adage.com/article/cmo-strategy/mcdonald-s-ceo-2015-a-year-gaining-momentum/296765/

http://www.businessinsider.com/mcdonalds-new-ceo-strategy-2015-3

http://www.cnbc.com/id/102469451#. (New McDonald's CEO: What investors want to know)

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