Strategic Management: SWOT Analysis
Strategic management is a technique used by managers to give a firm a long-term direction and involves a systematic analysis of decisions, actions that create a competitive advantage. It involves the analysis of strategic goals, vision, and mission and the internal and external environmental factors in a firm. SWOT is an acronym standing for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. SWOT analysis involves the assessment of a firm’s internal strengths, weaknesses and the external opportunities and threats (Henry, 2008). This analysis helps to identify the strengths and capabilities to minimize weaknesses, along with identifying opportunities to overcome threats. In reference to Toyota Company, leading automobile firm, a SWOT analysis on the company’s Strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities are as follows.
The Toyota Corporation is a leading automobile manufacturing in the world among other companies such as Ford. It has a strong production process that is effective and efficient in saving costs, this creates a competitive advantage. Cost savings helps to set affordable prices of their products to end users, over the competitors. The firm utilizes resources and eliminates unwanted costs in the production process. This strategy creates a competitive edge for Toyota, by reducing costs and increasing the production capabilities and efficiency
Toyota has strong horizontal integration merge verses the competitors who have vertical integration relationships. Strong relationship with supplier creates a competitive advantage, and it informs of updates or any developing changes (Henry, 2008) Horizontal merge proves to be cost effective, reduce risks and increase benefits. Merging helps to pool together resources of the combining companies, creating a favorable business environment. Synergy is one of the benefits of combining companies, and sharing of resources e.g. distribution channels. Toyota opts for best suppliers in Japan.
Toyota has a strong culture advantage, employees’ devotion in their jobs, performance and desire to improvement. It treats it employees with legitimate sense of respect and loyalty. The Japanese value work differently from competitors for instance the Americans this is reflected in their quality products they offer to the market. Toyota in invests more its employees empowers them to be creative and innovative (Hino, 2012). A strong sense of respect of hierarchal authority enables fast decision-making and implementing Strategic plan.
A weakness is something or a condition that hinders a firm from achieving it objectives. It is a competitive deficiency (Henry, 2008) Toyota offers financial services such as insurance, credit cards. These services report low profits to the firm than other segments. Such financial services can render a competitive edge as well as a deficiency in for firms the financial strength.
Toyota use the just in time system which gives Toyota a competitive advantage, but too much dependency of this system can lead to malfunction if the supplier provision does not meet the requirements of the firm. Failure to meet these requirements affects the products quality in addition, to the manufacturing system.
Toyota capitalizes on the strengths to meet its threat and take advantage of the external opportunities. Toyota has a strong cultural advantage that enhances the organization structure, focuses on teamwork rather than individual efforts. It inspires creativity and innovativeness to employees to improve the quality of its products. Loyalty when dealing with employees and a unfailing sense of respect of the authority. Top managers make decisions, the employees respect their high figures, and this enables quick decision-making. It internal leadership and management helps Toyota to dominate the automobile industry. Toyota depends too much on its suppliers, this leads to a strong reliable relationship with it suppliers (Hino, (2012). Although this could be a weakness but it gives Toyota a competitive advantage over the competitors such as General Motors.
Toyota is a dominating automobile firm, its produces affordable cars and other automobile related products. A SWOT analysis identifies Toyotas strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities. Internal analysis involves the assessment of the firm’s internal environment factors such as the organization structure, leadership and management among others. Toyota has a stable structure and principled leadership design (Hino, 2012). The quality of the products and employees loyalty dictates the strengths of the firm. Toyota is loyal to employees and produces quality products.
However, Toyota faces threats such as competition from existing and emerging firm in the automobile industry. It takes advantage of the internal strengths to take advantage of opportunities and minimize threats. Toyota Company has a strong relationship with its suppliers. This helps to fight the upcoming firms and the existing firms in the industry. A complex distribution channel discourages competitor’s efforts. Toyota uses it strengths to take advantage of opportunities, it has high producing capacity at minimum costs. They produce quality and affordable cars in the market (Hino, 2012). They differentiate their products to meet the consumers emerging desires. Toyota has incentives and discount programs that help improve the profitability of its financial services segment.
In Strategic, management SWOT analysis is a continuous process since the environment is changing. Toyota needs inspires its employees to continuously think of strategic changes that enhance improvement in quality of products in the future. It requires strong strategic plans difficult to duplicate, corrective actions to maintainable a competitive position of a leading automobile in the world.
Henry, A. (2008). Understanding strategic management. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Hino, S. (2012). Inside the mind of Toyota: Management principles for enduring growth. New York, N.Y: Productivity Press.
Pearce, J. A., & Robinson, R. B. (2004). Strategic management: Formulation, implementation, and control. Boston, Mass: McGraw-Hill.
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