The paper “ Marks and Spencer - Organization Theory and Strategy” is a great example of the case study on management. Marks & Spencer is one of the best-known chain store retailers in the UK. The company has been in operation for more than 120 years. The company’ s over 600 outlets within the UK employ more than 65,000 people. Following successful operations in the UK, the company has opened over outlets in over 40 foreign countries such as Hong Kong. As of the beginning of 2009, the number of stores located outside the UK stood at 275.
The UK’ s retailing industry is very competitive and dynamic as it is significantly sensitive to fashion and lifestyle trends as displayed by celebrities. Shoppers have shown tendencies to shop where these celebrities shop other than where they are best accommodated (Cummings, Wilson and Duncan 2005, 417). This has locked out small retailers who remain obscure to celebrity icons and subsequently almost the entire market. For the surviving players, change of strategy has become a necessity rather than a tactic. Customers are more informed on what they want, where it sis or should be, and how service during shopping should be delivered. Consequently, Marks and Spencer have been at the forefront of changing strategy.
Many authors have documented the failure and rise of the company through turbulent times as early as during the Great Depression of the 1930s. In 1998, the company made record-breaking pre-tax profits of over $1 billion dollars but in 2008 recorded a 50% drop in share prices (Stanford 2002: Ackroyd, 2003: Cummings, Wilson, and Duncan 2005, 417). This fashioned a period of transformation for the whole organization.
This change involved refocusing on the basics which included the three business values of Quality, Value, and Service creating a business environment with more challenges for employees. Stanford (5) says “ the start-point is knowing your organization’ s business purpose. ” At M& S, Managers had to train employees for the new challenges in the newly created business environment. A case in point is when Marks & Spencer launched Marks & Spencer Direct, as a direct mail clothing catalog.
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Grundy, Tony and Brown, Laura, Value-based Human Resource Strategy: Developing Your HR
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