Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Nothing Unique to Offer

How lack of uniqueness could hurt George’s Business

The uniqueness of a business idea defines the absolute success of any given venture. This claim confirms the truth behind the comments of George’s potential investor who upholds the role of uniqueness when it comes to attaining business productivity and hence success (Yukl and Lepsinger 361).

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During its inception, a business is unable to identify the selling points that will enable it to stand out from other ventures. Hence, chances are that the business’ success options are slim. George’s potential investor views the uniqueness of a business as that particular idea or product that the business deploys in its operational environment to identify itself uniquely with the existing and potential customers. Business distinctiveness defines its points of sale in line with the long term and short term fundamental guiding principles and core values.

Failure to ignore the role of uniqueness may hurt George’s chances of business success. Based on the underlying issues and George’s negative perception about the concept of distinctiveness, his idea is deemed not to bear fruits because of the already established potential competitors who have been into business for a long. Also, the investor he is approaching is reluctant, pessimistic, and disinterested in committing because George’s idea has no exceptionality to prompt him to risk his money. Furthermore, George is working under unsatisfactory assumptions that his business will just succeed without proper planning. He has no technical backing of his presumptions. Hence, his chances of success may be ruined by the evident lack of uniqueness in his venture.

Steps to Making George’s Venture Successful

Despite new business ideas and concepts being developed every day, entrepreneurs are always challenged when it comes to establishing a unique product or way of marketing and selling that may enable them own part of the dominant niche of their competitors. Thus, upon overcoming competition, an entrepreneur is assured of not only a bigger market share but also excellent sales and returns.

Therefore, to attain uniqueness, George may have to follow steps that include emulating the business strategies of the market giants, including McDonald’s and Domino Pizza, but modifying them to fit his unique venture. By so doing, he will learn their tactics and plans on how they do their sales, the scale of customer satisfaction, and any special information about the product. This information will help the new entrepreneur to readjust his business plan and strategies accordingly to emerge the best in terms of customer satisfaction and service delivery.

Making a competitive analysis about the competitors is a second important step that will enable George to evaluate his rivals’ products. This plan will enable him to add fresh ideas that will translate into value addition and hence the uniqueness of his commodities. Creativity will differentiate George’s business from those of his competitors. He should consider modification of ideas of pizza preparation, cooking methods, and packaging techniques.

Preferably, he should always be at the center of his competitors’ customers and be the first to change strategy before his competitors. Having a clear knowledge of one’s customers, their preferences, particular selling points on the product, and their expectations in terms of quality and pricing may help George restore uniqueness in his business. Besides, George may increase the frequency of product availability. Sometimes, customers may not have any issue concerning the pricing and location of a product. They may only require their needs to be satisfied (Yukl and Lepsinger 362).

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Therefore, George’s knowledge about customers will enable him to solve their problems by satisfying their needs. This strategy will retain the customers while at the same time assuring him of their loyalty. George may also opt to compare offers in terms of pricing and quantity to determine what adjustment he needs to make to attain uniqueness. This move will go a long way in helping him to come up with an irresistible offer that will wow customers.

Crucial Factors that George Overlooked

Other three factors that George is overlooking in his quest to start a pizza business include the need for a feasibility study, the amount of capital he requires, and the need for a contingency plan. George wants to commence a business without conducting a feasibility study. Such a study is crucial for George because it will validate the scale of success of his business. The study will assist him to analyze his business objectives, marketing, financial facets, business management, and technical considerations that will act as pillars for the success of his venture. George has overlooked the idea of undergoing some training about how such a study is done.

George has not considered the amount of money that is required for his venture. He is still looking for investors, yet he is not even sure of the required capital investment. The implication here is that he has no hint of the size of business he will establish. Third, George has no contingency plan. The venture is a start-up that is coated with uncertainties. There are already three competitors, namely, the Large National Franchise, Pizza Wagon, and the other one that avails domestic services. A contingency plan may help George to estimate the amount of rivalry he expects when he establishes his venture.

As a remedy to the above shortfalls, George needs to come up with a viable business plan that stipulates all considerate areas such as market evaluation and profiling, financial and budgetary analysis, project molding, and business preparation. Besides, he should consider approaching investors who share similar interests. Furthermore, besides undergoing training to acquire some knowledge in entrepreneurship, he may consider hiring experts to help him in structuring his business professionally.

The Southwest Airlines

Factors Necessary for Re-engineering Corporate Thinking exhibited by Southwest Airlines

The need for change and the setting of organizational vision are among the essential elements to consider when re-engineering corporate thinking. In the context of Southwest Airlines, the company entered the industry with a clear vision that enabled it to set the pace by clinching top status in a fleet of 737s. It focuses on charging relatively low passenger fair and increasing airline frequency among other areas that its competitor airlines had not addressed (Tully 129).

However, orienting people to operate in line with the vision is not easy. Besides creating an environment where people own the vision, Southwest Airlines has provided its human resources with an environment to innovate. For instance, Herb Kelleher, the company’s CEO, has fostered an environment where workers are contented were delivering their services.

Consecutively, employees at Southwest Airlines are provided with a chance to explore their innovative power by being encouraged to excel. Those who achieve exemplary heights in their line of duty are legible for an award. One such award is the ‘heroes of the heart award’. Thirdly, Keller identifies people as the feasible processes that require re-engineering. For instance, he facilitates the training of new staff members as a basis to align them with the company’s vision. Process understanding is another factor that can re-engineer corporate thinking. Keller allows free interactions with junior employees by creating embraceable rapport. He manages by ‘fooling around’’, laughing with people, and acknowledging the value of each member. By so doing, he gets to know his employees, including the specific areas that need re-engineering.

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The need to redesign the process and integrate new information technology is also another factor that steers corporate thinking. For smooth flow for ideas, managers should apply viable re-engineering principles, limiting assumptions, and/or look for avenues to apply new technology. Southwest Airlines applies this principle by encouraging people to innovate and/or come up with ideas that can steer the company forward. Management time is always not enough. Thus, Southwest Airlines’ managers and workers take on few tasks at a time. For instance, Keller identifies innovation, freedom, and social skills as his points of focus. Eventually, he succeeds in instilling discipline and high work spirit in his employees.

Specific Elements of a Corporate Entrepreneurial Strategy apparent within Southwest Airlines

The first element of corporate entrepreneurial strategy execution is the distribution of power. In Southwest Airline’s context, the company exhibits this strategy by dedicating and assigning managerial duties to its CEO, Keller, and Libby Sartain, the deputy leader. Other powers are also accorded to junior employees. Keller realizes the need to know his junior staff. He interacts with them most often with the view of knowing whether they are comfortable in their lines of operations.

The second element is decision making. Keller allows decision making in the company to follow top-bottom and bottom-up approaches. The top-bottom is exhibited when he delegates duties to junior staff while bottom-up decision-making is realized when junior staff’s innovative ideas are considered and incorporated into the company’s operations (Tully 130). Also, by encouraging junior staff even to violate the established rules in the interest of the company’s clientele.

Southwest Airlines upholds the generation of ideas as another corporate entrepreneurial strategy. A team that is dedicated to accomplishing the agenda of a company, including Southwest Airlines, can generate ideas. Keller invests at least one idea in each of his 30, 000 employees. He expects many ideas to be generated individually as well as departmentally. Hence, each year, the company has a culture where an exclusive department’s name is tattooed on a jet. The fourth corporate entrepreneurial strategy is the process of handling ideas in Southwest Airlines. Keller realizes that commitment is attained when employees understand the goings-on in a company.

Idealistic processes that are backed by all employees drive the company. Other apparent elements of corporate entrepreneurial strategy showcased within Southwest Airlines include strategic vision development. Kelleher has generated a distinctive vision that upholds a way of life, which promotes soaring spirit while evading gratification. Described as a celebrated figure, Keller has steered the vision that has elevated the company from a start-up to the best airline business in the world.

From its onset, the company had the idea of bridging the market gap by charging low passenger fair, offering from the point-to-point carriage, guaranteeing short-haul, and maintaining a relatively higher frequency that has seen it wave off competition. Its vision for success as a market leader has made it lead the industry by providing the world’s largest 737s that total to over 550 aircraft. Today, the company manages more than 3000 air travels daily, covering close to 100 stations in over 40 countries.

The Way Herb Keller has been Instrumental in Structuring a Conducive Entrepreneurial Activity

Herb Keller was at the forefront in terms of vitalizing the entrepreneurial activity at Southwest Airlines. To begin with, he provided an environment where staff members could have fun in their line of duty as a tool for promoting innovation. Keller dresses casually, a case where he is described to resemble Elvis Presley. As a grooming style, he has created an environment that enables employees to work with absolute freedom in areas of innovation.

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Keller also has been the main mechanism for nurturing staff to gather confidence when handling unique processes that foster innovation. Southwest Airlines University for the People was an establishment by Kelleher, a conducive avenue where new employees would learn about social and integrity skills such as cooperation, trust, communication skills, and mutual respect. In turn, they apply the virtues when handling the company’s customers and/or when interacting with fellow workers.

Thus, Southwest Airlines’ employees are always in harmonious communication, a tool that Keheller established to foster the development of new ideas through professionalized interactions. The company has the interest of the people at heart. Keller availed room for employee self-growth and actualization. As a result, workers have created a conducive environment where they operate to the level of becoming products of their successful creation.

Reigning in Innovation at Google

Relating the Chapter Definition of a ‘Corporate Entrepreneurial Strategy’’ to the Role that Marissa Mayer must Fulfill at Google

Marissa Mayer, the CEO of Google, is industry-conscious. She understands well the industry’s attractiveness so fluently that she can make a distinction of new actual alternatives. She can influence dealers and clients by providing them with high-tech user-friendly tools, thus out-shining the company’s competitors. She leads the company in large areas such as Google Health, Google Desktop, and Google Labs among other projects. Based on the definition of ‘corporate entrepreneurial strategy’, Mayer must fulfill her role as Google’s reason behind its enduring success. Mayer must maintain her efforts of developing many applications such as the ‘Google Search’ interface that has enabled the company to operate in more than 100 different global languages.

Mayer must also maintain the company’s growth strategy (Elgin 88). She has a well-balanced equation between growth strategy and competitiveness plans. She maximizes growth by exploiting short-term prospects, thus handling management roles besides the main strategy. This plan has been enabled by her readiness to consider viable innovations from project ideas that she receives from the mailing list that has been developed as a platform to span idea generation.

Mayer must also uphold the unequivocal internal strategic communication to employees on matters that concern marketing mechanisms, management of human resources, and production among many other areas of Google’s operations. Mayer effectively relates with the MBAs and the PhDs as a critical way to managing idea flow and/or regulating any conflict interests between her and the employees.

She also determines when pet projects are ripe enough to be promoted and infused onto the Google platform for customer use. Additionally, she has specific hours for discussing and brainstorming on the ideas with her employees. She has managed to tie the company’s essential competencies through an elaborate integrated chain of internal operations, an approach that she must uphold to guarantee easy project implementation (Elgin 89).

The distinction between Google’s Approach to ideas: Is it an ‘‘Entrepreneurial Strategy’ or a ‘Strategy for Entrepreneurship’?

Google has adopted both the entrepreneurial strategy and strategy for entrepreneurship in its operations. For the entrepreneurial strategy approach, Google has considered strategies such as creativity, risk tolerance, responsiveness to new ideas, leadership, and property rights acquisitions. The company’s creative nature keeps it on top of the competition table. Besides taking risks by investing in uncertain projects, it responds to innovative ideas by giving room to groups’ idea presentations. It also protects its idea windows through patenting its projects and providing good leadership. To maintain the viability of its projects, Google ranks each year’s top 100 projects based on their importance. The strategic growth of the company saw the projects list ranking grow to 270.

On the other hand, the company’s strategy for entrepreneurship is realized by giving room to general employees to brainstorm and come up with ideas, which are assessed based on relevance or applicability. Mayer has three days a week to attend to and assess employee projects before approving them for top management consideration. Sergey Brin and Larry Page, the founders of Google, encourage the generation of ideas at every level of organizational structure.

They have provided a mailing platform that allows any employee with a project to post on it for the management’s consideration. Besides, the company embraces outsourcing for new ideas and sponsoring their generation, and eventual patenting and applicability. A viable example was evident when Steve Lawrence’s project was considered and sponsored through financial and expert inclusion. This strategy encouraged Lawrence to come up with a higher applicable project.

Factors for Developing an Entrepreneurial Strategy that is evident in Google’s Approach

Through the help of CEO Marissa Mayer, Google has managed to remain creative by developing new ideas far beyond its competitors. Several factors for entrepreneurial strategy are evident in Google’s business operations. For instance, innovativeness such as offering voice calls free of charge and the provision of world satellite images are among key areas of creativity that have revolutionized the world of digital experience. Its founder, Larry Page, encourages the generation of ideas via the provision of a mailing list that is open to any innovator to publish his or her ideas.

Besides, Google is risk-tolerant since it responds quickly to the generated opinions while at the same time harnessing new risky ventures by utilizing all potential possibilities without fear of losing resources. This situation is evidenced by Google’s investment in Steve Lawrence’s desktop search software that enables users to search their computer hardware information on any computer. The third apparent aspect is the responsiveness of the Google Company, which gives it a chance to respond to new business opportunities and market exploration. Google responded swiftly to Steve Lawrence’s idea, thus leading the market ahead of Microsoft for two months.

Moreover, Google has upheld affable management qualities that have made the industry a leader in terms of innovativeness and relevance (Yukl and Lepsinger 361). Entrepreneurs’ ideas are bought and put into action. Mayer pays attention to presentations from innovative groups after which the exemplary projects are considered. The patenting and issuance of property rights to newly developed ideas have safeguarded Google’s innovations from proliferation by others through the acquisition of patent rights, thus closing out on competitors who may joyride on Google’s hi-tech knowledge.

Works Cited

Elgin, Ben. “Managing Google’s Idea Factory.” Business Week 1.3953(2005): 88-90. Print.

Tully, Shawn. “Southwest’s Radical New Flight Plan.” Fortune 172.5(2015): 128-136. Print.

Yukl, Gary, and Richard Lepsinger. “Why integrating the leading and managing roles is essential for organizational effectiveness.” Organizational Dynamics 34.4 (2005): 361-375. Print.

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