Strategic Management and Strategic Competitiveness – Apple Inc

How Globalization and Technology Changes have Impacted Apple Inc.

Globalization is driven by the technological advances and the increased interaction between people and nations through trade (Baffour Awuah & Amal, 2011).  It is defined as the interaction and continuous integration among governments, companies and people. Globalization has great influence on how ideas are developed and how they are delivered through technology. This influence on how ideas are conceived created and delivered impacts on the operational models of the organizations that operate in the global arena.

The conception of business ideas often happens in one place, while its execution happens at some other part of the world for the delivery of the final product (Shiu, 2011). Apple Inc., through its smart thinking, has become one of the top ranked multinational companies in the world owing to its ability to capitalize on the impact of globalization. An analysis of the various Apple products such as iPod, iPads, iPhones and Apple TV, reveals how the company owes the success of each of these items on the impact of globalization. The ideas about these Apple products were conceived, designed and executed largely due to the impact of globalization. The iPod for instance, is supplied by the Samsung Electronics for flash memory, Toshiba for hard drive and Broadcom Corp., U.S, for its multimedia processor.

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The iPod provides a perfect example of impact of globalization on Apple Inc. (Shiu, 2011).  The components of iPod are manufactured in different parts of Korea, Taiwan and China, while a Taiwanese firm, Inventec Corp., located in China assembles the components for final product.  Thus globalization has enabled the company to outsource the manufacture of its device components, reaping on the economies of scale. Moreover, it has allowed the company to manufacture its products closer to where the raw materials are located, in Asia.

Application of the Industrial Organization Model and the Resource-Based Model to Determine how Apple Inc. could Earn Above-Average Returns

The resource-based (RBV) and industrial organization (I/O) models could be applied to determine how Apple Inc. could earn above-average returns. According to (Bower & Gilbert, 2005), the industrial organization model is based on a five step place, which includes external environment, attractiveness of an industry, formulation of strategy, skills and assets, strategy implementation and superior returns, to assist companies to meet their goals. The resource-based model refers to an approach of achieving competitive advantage through the use of existing resources to exploit external opportunities.

Apple possesses a lot of strengths, for example the company has strong marketing and advertising capabilities (Johnson et al., 2012).  This can help the company to increase its brand awareness and thus elicit stronger demand for its products. The company has achieved great public awareness, having made itself a household name. Therefore, Apple Incl. should commit less money on advertising to achieve greater returns than its major competitors in the market. Moreover, if the company can have greater knowledge about its competitors in the market, they can better assess the overall market.

The core competencies and skills such as the design of product, key security issues of its devices and the hard to copy products can be employed by the company to gain a competitive advantage and thus increase its returns. Apple products are known for their authenticity, durability, security and great design. It is hard to hack or bridge the security system in Apple products. Moreover, it would be so expensive and hard to imitate Apple devices. All these form key aspects that the company can exploit to earn above-average returns.

How the Vision Statement and Mission Statement of Apple Incl. Influence Its Overall Success

The vision statement of Apple Inc. is “Apple is committed to bringing the best personal computing experience to students, educators, creative professionals and consumers around the world through its innovative hardware, software and Internet offerings”. The company’s mission statement is “Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple has reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices with iPad” (Johnson et al., 2012).

The company’s vision statement is an epitome of the company’s success to which Apple Inc. has lived to it.  Through its vision statement, Apple Incl. has been able to meet the needs of consumers, who include students, educators, creative professionals and general users of its merchandise through quality and innovative devices. A look at the company website reveals that Apple truly provides devices that meet all the consumers identified in its vision statement. Therefore, the vision of the company has worked to influence the company’s overall success.

However, the company vision statement is too broad and lacks in company values, does not tell who the company is and what it does, which fails to provide the necessary inspiration. The company mission statement does little to influence its overall success. Perhaps it is the compelling statement from the company vision, which has propelled the company to the greatness it enjoys. Apple Inc. should reconsider redesigning its mission statement in order to contribute towards its overall success.

How Each Category of Stakeholder Impacts the Overall Success of Apple Inc.

            A stakeholder can be defined as an individual with an interest in a company and wants that specific entity to prosper. At Apple Inc., there are several types of stakeholders who impact and contribute to the overall success of the company. The following is a breakdown of the company stakeholders and their impacts.

  • Lenders- These are individuals and institutions who provide the needed funds for the operations of the company. Lenders include financial companies and individuals who buy preferred stock when issued by the company.
  • Employees and manufacturers- These are the core categories of stakeholders, whose operations ensures the existence of the company. Employees contribute skills in design and assembly of products while manufacturers provide device parts.
  • Customers- The customers are the reason Apple exists, to serve their needs. The customer purchases, products reviews are important in enhancing company bottom line and development of excellent products.
  • Suppliers- These provide the raw materials and other components that are necessary for the Apple product design and distribution.

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