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Planning and Control
Formulating Plans and Strategies
Bunge is a renowned organization that deals in agribusiness in as many as 40 countries offering the processing service of the products and produces from the farms as well as transport hence acting as the link between the production a t the farms and the final consumer. Bunge also deals in the production of renewable fuels, animal feeds, sugar, flour, fertilizers and oil among other products (Bunge Limited, 2011).
Bunge SWOT analysis
The company has several strengths one of them being the fact that they are involved in diverse agribusiness ventures. As noted above, they deal in a range of farm produce and products processing as well as transportation of the goods form the farm to the clients hence enjoying the advantages of economics of scale and hence being able to offer their clients a variety of products in a bid to retain their loyalty.
The company also enjoys the fact that they add value to the farm produce and products that they get from the farmers hence increasing the price and consequently the profit margins instead just buying and selling it at a small profit margin.
Bearing the wide network that they have globally, they are trusted by farmers to access the distant markets. This helps then consolidate a wide market and expand the global network with every successful transaction that they make possible.
Bunge also boasts of a strong research and development capabilities as compared to other smaller organizations. Bunge also has the advantage of having strong and well-known brands all over the world which makes them have an upper hand in agribusiness. They also boast of a very high quality engineering competence and processing technology. The other strength of Bunge is the fact that they make an active presence in both the advanced markets and those that are barely developing.
In as much as Bunge has the various strengths above, it also has weaknesses that range from the recent decrease in the cash position that the company has been facing of late. The company also has a high dependency on agribusiness such that should the harvest fail then it is inevitable that it will be grossly affected too. There has also been noted a tendency of poor operational performance in the company (Bunge, 2006).
Bunge still has a wide prospect of business expansion and the possibility to go beyond the 40 countries that it has already covered. Bunge can also engage in strategic acquisitions if it wants to and still will work very well for the company and use this as an opportunity to expand the organization beyond agriculture only. The other opportunity is the potential agriculture market that it has since it deals with a commodity that is the biggest challenge to the entire world-how to feed the people, hence presenting a constant demand for food products.
Despite the many opportunities that Bunge has, there are various challenges that are there, one being the highly competitive environment that is welcoming new players each and every day. The other very potential danger is the weather changes that are occasioned by the global warming predisposes the company to big threat in most of the areas it operates in, since if the yields are affected then their business is ruined. The rising process of the raw materials that Bunge deals in is also another significant threat since if they continue to go up then Bunge may find the business not sustainable. The other threat has to do with the genetically modified foods towards which people have a general misgiving and a dislike for them hence they may lack market of such products (Market Publishers, 2010).
Of the four generic competitive strategies, Bunge uses the differentiation strategy. This is the strategy that employed by the organization to prove or show the broad-based customers how the products of the company as well as their services are of unique quality as compared to the competition within the market. This is the strategy that Bunge has adopted since it is a large agribusiness organization that deals with several products and in many different countries, they need to keep showing their clients their prowess as well as the quality that keeps them accepted in various markets continuously. This strategy fits well into the mission of the organization which is to be the best integrated agribusiness and food company. The focus on the client satisfaction and the uniqueness of the product is bound to help the company reach the intended goals. The weaknesses that there are can be overcome and worked on and the positive thing is that the strengths work well to the advantage of the organization in achieving their goals.
Fundamentals of Decision-Making
With the current global trends, it is essential and common for that matter that managers are involved in adaptive decision making. Adaptive decisions are taken when things change and in the course, there is some degree of uncertainty that is involved. It involves changing or shifting in a way some past practices that an organization was involved in.
As a manager of one of the branches of Bunge, I have had to make fundamental adaptive decisions one being the decision to allocate the same people supply task towards particular assigned route. This is now different from the past where the suppliers or people delivering goods from the organization could be regularly changed from one route to another. This was a decision that was informed by the fact that the delivery team need to for an interpersonal relationship with the clients along their allocated route such that the clients feel and experience the presence of the company and in this manner minimize the chances of them shifting to other providers. It is also meant to make the clients free to share concerns with the delivery people with whom they interact on regular basis and in that manner the organization will be on a constant improvement trend.
The other decision that was made was to ensure that, despite there being a system in place that allows for the entry of all client information and orders in a manner that any sales person can process the order and put it together, I decided that each sales person will be charged with initiating a sale or pitching for a sale and following it to the very logical collusion. After that, a report by the sales executive will have to be filed in the form of a mail and sent to me, whether the sale was closed or not. This allocation of a sale to the particular individual without passing it from one sales person to another is to ensure consistency in the manner in which a client and a sale is handled, from the start to the end. This will also help me as manager track down where the common errors in a sale occur especially in the sales that we lose the closure of the sale. This knowledge will then be used for the good of the organization as the improvement suggestions will be generated after that and passed on to each sales executive within our branch.
These two decisions were not made in a single-handed and abrupt manner, but through a consultative process. Each of these came up during the weekly meetings that are often held within our branch. Due to the challenge that were experienced among the delivery team and the sales people, particularly in line with client complains and a lack of the exact person to take up the responsibility and sort the mess up, there were several suggestions put forth during the meeting. Each person wrote them down and each individual was asked to go contemplate on them, discuss with peers and have a report for the subsequent week. The employees came back with various observations bout the suggestions that were put forth and from these, further brainstorming was initiated within the meeting and conclusive stands taken through show of consensus, there after implemented and since change is not an event or static but continuous, we are still making finer adjustments to the decisions.
The problem that I have encountered and involved uncertainty is the prospect of venturing into a new area of distribution for our branch. This was a challenge put before me as a manger and yet the region that I was to launch a distributorship network within three months was strange to me and I had little technical information that would be viable to put together a meaningful distributorship within such a short period of time. The process that I followed in handling this and making a decision on how to tackle it was to gather information first about the region, then with the sales team we developed a number of alternatives on how to venture into this region and finally picked a strategy. The other problem that involved risk in my life was resigning from my previous job, which was in the…[continue]
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