KFC is employing poor strategies while managing its international operations. Normally, the preference of a product especially food product differ based on people culture. What American prefer may perform very poorly in another country such as Japan due to cultural difference. In this regard KFC was not supposed to dictate on exclusive American menu to be employed in Japan. Though retaining the company identity was important, the company was supposed to find a workable menu for Japanese to maximize on sales and to remain competitive in the foreign country. Based on the cultural differences, the KFC was required to offer a certain degree of freedom to Loy while making working decision regarding the Japanese based store without dictating that it must rhyme with the headquarter policy.
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Dick Mayer should consider accepting that Japan is different from America and the company required to address targeted consumers taste and preferences to be able to survive in that market. Thus, Mayer was supposed to conduct food market survey in Japan and evaluate the applicability of American based menu in Japan. This could have guided him in imposition of American based rules in Japan’s based venture to ensure that these rules are applicable in japan and they are of benefit to the company. Dick Mayer should consider giving Loy maximum freedom while making decision regarding the Japan based venture in terms of menu, design and coordination. This is because, Loy had studied and tested the market and his decision were fully based on past experience. He was fully able to decide what was best for the company in Japan (Harvard Business School, 1992). In this regard, Mayer could have accepted to be educated about Japanese culture their taste preference in terms of the hotel interior design and food taste. The main aspect Mayer was supposed to ensure is that the venture recorded reasonable profit and a positive tread and thus its other operations other than menu followed the main organization policy.
Mayer managed to effect the major changes in the headquarters which revived the company’s business in the US. However, Mayer still requires to make changes in headquarter to reduce the rate of interference in the international based ventures. The headquarter should have a market research team that survey all anticipated market and evaluate the applicability of the current American menu based on the preference of the targeted customers. In this case, the company should base their survey on wide range of consumers, particularly local residence. The decision on the venture interior design and menu should be based on the survey report and not exclusively on what works for American ventures. This will enhance both local and international management of venture.
The best plan that would enable Mayer to continue expanding in Japan is first to try to understand the Japan venture operation from Loy and the store history so us to understand how they came up with the current form of operation and why. He should then conduct his own market survey evaluating potential customers, and their preference of the current American Menu as compared to the Japan menu in different parts of Japan where fashion has not dominated the market. Understanding potential customers’ preference will initiate Mayer’s flexibility with regard to the right company’s menu. Mayer should then expand the Japan companies based on this revelation. The aspect of flexibility to meet customers’ needs should be embraced in this new ventures. Similarly, Mayer should conduct market survey and preference of the current American Menu to other countries he wishes to expand to. The survey should study market prices and the most preferred food around, their view regarding American products and if possible distribute their products there to evaluate their marketability. A decision on what to supply there should be made based on the survey results.
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