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Capstone Project: Analyzing mission and vision statements against the performance of Apple Computers, Inc.

Abstract

Apple Computer Incorporated (Apple Comp, Inc.) is a U.S. corporation that develops and produces personal computers, portable music players, and mobile phones targeted at mainstream users and efficient and easy to use since recently. The headquarters of the company is located in Cupertino, California. A characteristic feature of computers from Apple is that they stand apart from widespread IBM-compatible (x86) computers. Despite the high prices, products of Apple Computer, Inc. have great potential and are recognized highly by personal computers’ users, largely due to competent advertising and PR policies pursued by the company all over the globe.

The company was founded in 1977 by Steven Jobs and Stephen Wozniak in Palo Alto, California. First manufacturing location for the company became an ordinary garage. The founders of Apple Computer set a goal to create a microcomputer affordable for the average user, but with the widest opportunities.

The given project is aimed to analyze mission and vision statements against the performance of Apple Computers, Inc., evaluate how well the company lives out its mission and vision statements. It is also required to provide support from Apple Computer, Inc. performance of in the given evaluation. Moreover, it is relevant to assess how the organization’s strategic goals link to the company’s mission and vision, discuss the company’s financial performance for determining the connection between the company’s strategic goals, strategy and its performance. This project will as well try to conduct a competitive and marketing analysis of the organization along with considering the strength and weaknesses of Apple Computer, Inc.

Analyze the Company’s Mission and Vision Statements against the Performance of the Organization. Then, Evaluate How Well the Company Lives Out Its Mission and Vision Statement. Provide Support from the Organization’s Performance in Your Evaluation

Apple Computer Inc. has revolutionized the personal computer industry in 1970 offering a model Apple II. It has opened a new world of computers in the 1980s creating a model Macintosh. Today, the mission of Apple Computer, Inc. is to provide the best personal computers and technical support for students, educators, designers, scientists, engineers, businessmen and all consumers in more than 140 countries.

Leaning on the current mission, the company creates its future business, target consumers, and the direction of future development. Typically, the strategic vision is designed for at least the next five years. The exceptions are new industries or markets with high volatility and uncertainty that does not allow reasonable certainty to plan for such a long period. In order to select the direction of the company, it is necessary to evaluate a number of important parameters. First, the changes in the market segment in which the company operates and their impact on the development of the organization. Second, the emergence of new customers’ needs is what the company must meet. Third, the company must cover new geographic or product markets in the future. Fourth is the image of the company in five years along with its future.

Apple Computer, Inc. lives out its mission and vision statements excellently. It is one of the most sophisticated companies in the world that creates the product for future generations. It can even be said that this enterprise is the future of the world, and there are no doubts in it (Holston, 2011).

The company designs new products every year, which are bestsellers in selling all over the globe. The examples are iPod, iPhone, iTune and other brands of the company. All they live in many houses around the world and will be in each of them soon.

Asses How the Organization’s Strategic Goals Link to the Company’s Mission and Vision

According to Cotton (2013), PR-manager of Apple Computer, Inc., the management of the company along with the Board of Directors has been in active discussion about winning additional profit. He claims, “Apple’s cash balance had built to a point beyond what we needed to run our business and maintain flexibility to take advantage of strategic opportunities, so we announced a plan to return $45 billion to shareholders over three years. As of next week we will have executed $10 billion of that plan” (Cotton, 2013).

Because the company is focused on designing products for people and for future generation, it can be easily stated that the strategic goals of the business are linked with its mission and vision statement.

Strategic vision is not a dream of the future of the company. It is an implementation of creativity. Apple has a clearly articulated strategic vision that inspires employees of the company to achieve its objectives, and clearly defines the direction of its performance.

The management of Apple Computer, Inc. has formed the strategic vision of the organization relating to creativity of three major components. First, mission of the company determines the position and the enterprise’s business at the moment. Second, a strategic vision of the company is clearly formulated for the Board of Directors for gaining support of all employees. Third, long-term course is produced of the basis of defining the mission and strategic path of the company.

Thus, this strategic vision has its benefits. They are (a) reducing of the risk of random decisions; (b) expression of the purposes of the company, encouraging greater productivity; (c) set for a long-term period.

Analyze the Company’s Financial Performance to Determine the Link between the Company’s Strategic Goals, Strategy, and Its Performance. Detail Your Findings

According to Appledigest.blogpost.com, the company’s earnings highlights were:

1) record revenues of $54.51 billion vs. $46.33 billion a year ago;

2) near-record operating income of $17.21 billion vs. $17.34 billion a year ago;

3) record net income of $13.08 billion vs. $13.06 billion a year ago;

4) near-record earnings per share of $13.81 vs. $13.87 a year ago.

As “10-K Annual Report” indicates, Apple executives informed the community about the amount of profits that the company received in 2012. It is about $176,064,000 and $44,640,000 earnings per share of the company (United States Securities and Exchange Commission, 2012). Such positive results have surprised even the most optimistic financial analysts. Hence, it can be perfectly seen that the company increases its profit constantly. However, some areas of activity should be also improved in order to raise the near-record earnings per share.

Net sales by product for 2012 are:

1) total Mac net sales (desktops and portables) – $23,221,000;

2) iPod – $5,615,000;

3) other music-related products and services – $8,534,000;

4) iPhone and related products and services – $80,477,000;

5) iPad and related products and services – $32,424,000;

6) peripherals and other hardware – $2,778,000;

7) software, service and other sales – $3,459,000 (United States Securities and Exchange Commission, 2012).

The company’s financial statement allows to seeing the profitability of the organization that comes out perfectly with its mission, vision statement, and strategic goals. Steve Jobs has created a business that designs products for people and for future generation. The quality of these products allows the company to be always competitive and raise its income every year.

Conduct a Competitive and Marketing Analysis of the Organization to Determine Strength and Opportunities

IT-market consists of three segments. They are providing an IT-service, the development of software and the production and sale of IT-hardware. In recent years, the rate of growth of the IT-market is declining. The market has entered a stage of “maturity,” which inevitably has led to the increased competition. In order to survive the market, many companies are forced to reconsider their competitive strategies and search for effective ways of creating competitive advantages. The main segments of the market of IT-service are IT-consulting, system integration, support for IT-equipment and software, IT-outsourcing, engineering and IT-training.

There are signs of an oligopolistic market structure in the segment of large corporate sales. This market is characterized by a small number of large firms, poor access to information and high entry barriers. On the other hand, the vast number of companies in the IT-services is featured by signs of monopolistic competition. It is defined by a large number of market participants, differentiated product, low barriers to entry and high availability of information. Thus, it is possible to conclude that the market of IT-services is a mixed model of the market structure, which is a synthesis of the two models. These are monopolistic competition and oligopoly. Respectively, the strategies of creating the competitive advantages of IT-companies, located in different segments, must differ.

The chain of distribution of Apple products is based on a hierarchical scheme: from the vendor (Apple Computers Inc.) to dealers – retail chains – retailers. Each level of the chain requires its own measures of marketing support for the brand Apple. The pricing also depends on this chain. The more intermediaries, the higher prices on the product are.

The technical support Service Genius Bar is widely used in the United States. It is available in Apple retail stores in the U.S. and European countries. Because of the actions of an official representation, many official online service support systems are offered to a customer. These are Apple-Switch101 and other Help-resources.

Apply the Appropriate Strategy (Low Cost, Differentiation, or Niche) that Will Maximize the Organization’s Return to Shareholders. Provide a Detailed Rationale for the Reason You Chose This Strategy and State the Expected Outcome(s)

In order to win the competition and raise the company’s income, it is always necessary to develop different marketing strategies. Therefore, the organization must pay attention to its official dealers and distributors because they represent the company in other countries. The performance of these dealers and distributors makes the image of the multinational corporation and forces customers leave feedbacks and purchase the products. This is why the company conducts online consulting with its official dealers all the time. However, many buyers try to find a similar product but for the cheaper price. As a result, the company should create a strategy that allows the company design products for affordable price. Nevertheless, this action is not really necessary since people all over the globe know about the quality of the Apple products. Thus, a qualified sales team will bring more profit for the company. Moreover, the performance of dealers and retailers lets the company gain new customers. For example, Apple Computer, Inc. can conduct special business trainings for the largest dealers and retailers to increase their knowledge and the art of selling.

Create a Detailed Scenario in Which a Merger or Acquisition Would Be Viable Strategy to Implement. Consider Who the Merger or Acquisition Would Involve, the Market Conditions Making It a Good Choice, and the Type of Strategy that Would Make It a Success

Such large corporations as Apple Computer, Inc. always trace the new products and technologies developed by its competitors, even the smallest ones. However, this company designs a unique product, which is aimed to be the greatest one and serve the future generations. Thus, the more appropriate variant for such an enterprise is to determine the company with a similar mission and vision statements and negotiate term and conditions for the merger of such businesses.

Google, Inc. is a very good example of the company that is also aimed to produce goods served for the future generations. This organization is determined as the best company in the world by lots of magazines such the Forbes among others. Every person wishes to serve for that company. Google Inc. has created excellent conditions for its employee, encouraging them to be more productive in designing unique products.

Thus, Apple Computer, Inc. may consider the variant for the merge with Google, Inc. This merger allows both companies to win their income and increase their performance experience. It will be a good strategy for them because people like both companies. They will be glad for that merger once they find out about it. The selling may increase twice or even higher.

Both enterprises design products for the IT-market. Both companies succeed greatly in their areas. This merger will let both companies extend their products’ wide range along with the niche within the market.

If You Were a Leader in This Organization, Determine the Appropriate Rewards That Would Best Motivate Employees Toward Achieving the Desired Strategy. Review the Financial Performance of the Company to Ensure the Rewards Are Appropriate. Justify Your Selection

Every company relies on its employees who are the force for designing the products. Therefore, it is necessary to pay much attention to the employee’s motivation. As a leader of such a large corporation, I would create good conditions for the employees. Offered for the merger Google, Inc. is a good example of the business that cares about its employees a lot. People from all over the globe are searching for the opportunity to work for that company. Thus, after the merger with this organization, I would consult with the HR-management of the Google, Inc. and ask them to evaluate the system of motivation presented at Apple Computer, Inc. Once it is done, a new-developed strategy to motivate employees should be implemented.

For example, the system of motivation of employees based on their productivity can be put in action. If a designer or any other employee shows excellent performance, it is possible to discuss a different variant of building his/her workplace that will help this worker in his/her performance and will be a reward for the good work. Additionally, different rewards at the end of the year can be implemented such as a corporate vacation to another country.

Apple Computer, Inc. shows constant increasing in its income every year. Hence, the existing system of motivation is established and developed well enough. However, the ability to find a unique approach to every its employee will help to raise qualified and thankful specialists. A constantly approving system of rewards and its implementation will demonstrate the company’s employees that they are cared and respected by its management.

Evaluate How the Company’s Current Strategy or Discourages Ethical Business Behavior (oPerhaps Both). Discuss How You Arrived aYour Statements

Company’s current strategy aimed at improving the quality of the designed products, extending the range of the products and establishing new approaches for improving the system of rewards can help the company in the ethical business behavior.

For the majority of people, Apple products are modern and convenient devices such as iPhones, iPods, iPads, Macbooks and others. For others, it is a way of life, style, and the whole philosophy in a certain sense. However, there are many nuances – from customer service to the application. First, owners of the products are tired of the identity of the goods. When the first models of the iPhone and iPad appeared, they caused an explosion in the market of IT-technologies. Now, nevertheless, each new version of the device is seen as an improved version of the old one. It is about the modification with significant improvements. There are no radically new changes at Apple at the moment. Second, the applications should be extremely carefully used. The owners of Apple devices ought to pay much attention to applications that they use. For example, Smurfs’ Village, which tells the story of the bizarre people called Smurfs, is one of the favorite applications among the users. Nonetheless, the catch is that the download of this game on the App Store is completely free, but it prevents to an active playing it. Third, mobile devices are changing the lives of people. Integrated into the iPhone app Facebook allows users to “mark” in the places where they are. More often the smartphone owners are marked for dinner, at public events, and even in their beds at night. Having iPhone, persons more often spend their leisure time in the virtual network. As a result, the connection to the outside world is lost, and some researchers have even accused Apple in the imposition of new users to the moral and ethical codes of behavior.

References

Apple Digest. (2013). Apple financial performance. Retrieved from http://appledigest.blogspot.com/p/apple-financial-performance.html.

Cotton, K. (2013, February 7). Statement by Apple. Retrieved from http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2013/02/07Statement-by-Apple.html.

Holston, D. (2011). The strategic designerTools & techniques for managing the design process.Cincinnati, OH: How Books.

United States Securities and Exchange Commission. (2012, October 31). 10-K annual report. Retrieved from http://files.shareholder.com/downloads/AAPL/2532137310x0xS1193125-12-444068/320193/filing.pdf.

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