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Strategic Choices

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Part I tables: Please see the attachment.

Part II
For this case, you will be identifying the primary business strategy employed by CPK. You will also be providing a critical analysis evaluating that strategy in the context of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Step One: Which of the four strategies discussed in this module (see background materials) does CPK follow? How do you know?

The strategy followed by California Pizza Kitchen is that of differentiation. The reason is that the restaurant chain specializes in California-style pizza. It sells non traditional pizzas and is not focused on any niche or segment. (Porter, M, 1998),

Step Two: Using the process you learned earlier, integrate this strategy with the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and. This should give you some specific actions the company is taking relative to their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. These actions are referred to as "strategic choices". Do CPK's strategic choices align with the firm's generic strategy? What are the points of disconnect? You need to think critically about this step. NO company achieves perfect alignment with its strengths, weaknesses, opportunites and threats, with its chosen strategy. It is your job to uncover the discrepancies and problems.

California Pizza Kitchen is making strategic choices but these are at variance with its overall strategy. Instead of maintaining its exclusiveness, California Pizza Kitchen has started including the normal pizza toppings and has started charging lower prices at its restaurants. The surprisingly reasonable pizza has been launched to attract customers during economic downturn. However, this leads to dilution of the differentiation strategy and leads to mediocre financial performance for California Pizza Kitchen.

Step Three: Identify any specific sustained competitive advantages conferred on CPK by virtue of its strategic choices.
California Pizza Kitchen has enjoyed sustained competitive advantages by the virtue of its differentiation. During the downturn when less exotic items appeared on its menu and the firm was compelled to sell lower priced items. The result was that California Pizza Kitchen lost its competitive advantage. It has a large debt and in 2010 was seeking to sell the company (Kurtz. D, 2008), .

Step Three:

? Discuss the effectiveness of CPK's' strategy in the light of its internal strengths and weaknesses, and external threats and opportunities.

California Pizza Kitchen's internal strengths are that it has been able to develop high quality authentic Californian Pizza. its strength is that the company has been innovative. It has been able to create pizza like the Thai Chicken Pizza, Jamaican Jerk Chicken, and the BBQ Chicken Pizza. The weakness of California Pizza Kitchen is that it has a large debt and needs ...

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Strategic Choices - Official company website of Southwest Airlines

refer to attachment one

Visit the official company website of Southwest Airlines

Step One: Differentiation Strategies

If a company positions itself as offering a product or service that is different from its competitors in a way that customers value, it is following a differentiation strategy.

Quality Strategy. In this type of differentiation, a company tries to set it's product/service appart on the basis of superior quality It is probably the most widely used method of attaining sustained competitive advantage. Usually, quality means superior performance, and a primium brand as opposed to discount or economy brands. These top of the line offerings command a high price tag. However, quality does not always mean pricey. Both Mercedes and VW connote high quality German engineering.

Niche Focus Strategies

Niche or Focus strategies are really variations of a cost or differentiation (or both!) strategy, only concentrating the company's efforts on a single or limited product or market. By focusing its efforts, the firm is able to realize the following advantages:

Preemptive Strategy

By being the first entrant into a new market or business area, a firm can establish competencies or assets that competitors are not able to copy or develop on their own. The first-mover advantage can create high switching costs for customers, erect high barriers to entrance for competitors, and tie up contracts with suppliers. Thus, a pre-emptive strategy can confer SCA's from both internal and external sources.

Which of the four strategies discussed does Southwest Airlines follow? How do you know?

Step Two: Using the process you learned in the attachment, integrate this strategy with the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. This should give you some specific actions the company is taking relative to their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. These actions are referred to as "strategic choices." Do Southwest Airlinesâ?? strategic choices align with the firm's generic strategy? If not, what are the points of disconnect? You need to think critically about this step, no company achieves perfect alignment of its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats with its chosen strategy. It is your job to uncover the discrepancies and problems.

Step Three: Identify any specific sustained competitive advantages conferred on Southwest Airlines by virtue of its strategic choices.
1) Discuss the effectiveness of Southwest Airlines' strategy in the light of its internal strengths and weaknesses, and external threats and opportunities.

2) Has the company created any sustained competitive advantages?

3) Identify any unaddressed threats or missed opportunities.

4) What can Southwest Airlines do to build on its strengths and shore up its weaknesses by altering its strategic choices?

5) Complete the paper by commenting on how your view of Southwest Airlinesâ?? vision and mission has changed or has been reconfirmed by this process of strategic analysis. Would you make any suggestions to revise the strategy, mission or vision?

Step Four: Consider the Case as a formal business report that you are developing for the Board of Directors and CEO as Southwest Airline's company consultant. This is a professional document. Follow the format below:
Executive summary: a synopsis of the main points, conclusions and recommendations made in the longer report.
Introduction: State the main purpose of the paper (thesis statement), what you hope to accomplish, and how you will go about doing it.
Main Body: The "meat" of the paper. Emphasize analysis, not just description. Delineate separate topics or sections with headings.
Conclusion: Summarize your paper in light of your thesis statement.

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