Analyze the Case Study on the Communication Plan of Earls restaurant along with evaluating the alternative actions.
Earls is in business since 1982 in Edmonton, Alberta. A pair of father and son named Leroy Earl Fuller and Stanley Earl Fuller started this business. Albertans claimed that Earls as one of their own businesses because it was founder in their province. Alberta by 2016 had the largest number of Earl’s restaurant in 26 locations. This chain of restaurant mainly believes in promoting a learning culture for which they always make their workers starts their employment journey from lower positions so that their employees can do mistakes and learn from them. They mainly recruit young candidates who do not have any previous work experiences and are very much new to this restaurant industry. Therefore, in this report the main aim is to analyze the case study on the communication plan of Earls restaurant along with evaluating the alternative actions and lastly, among them highlighting the final recommendation and how that can be implemented and the impact of decision on the stakeholders.
The key issues in this case is that Earls restaurant is facing a communication crisis that has been infused since midweek and do need an immediate strategic intervention. The issue mainly started when at a press conference Earls announced that they would be serving their customers only humane beef that are nurtured without the use of any kind of antibiotics, steroids or hormones. Not only this they also tweeted in the social media that Earls is the first chain who will be sourcing beef from a certified Humane farms in all of their restaurants in North America. As this news went viral the Alberta Beef Producers came on the national news and reported that by Earls announcement they felt that Earls are hinting that Canadian ranchers are not nurturing their animals in a humanly manner. Due to this issue, the restaurant is continuously getting phone calls in their head office from the disturbed Albertans and ranchers. The main fact is that the cows that are nurtured in the commercial firms are getting bigger in size because of the use of hormones. The ranchers mainly believe that if their cows were heavier then it would in turn give them higher market returns. However, the individuals or groups who will have necessary stake in the outcome are consumers, ranchers, the employees, the company as a whole.
The key issue of Earl’s restaurant does have an association with organizational behavior concepts are mainly of decision-making and teams. In this issue faced by Earls, the concepts of decision-making do play an important role because decision making is mainly coming up with choices among the alternative actions or inactions (Pettigrew, 2014). Jessa, who is the president of this restaurant after speaking to his core team, regional heads, consultants and the member of the owner’s family, reached three broader alternatives among which he has to take the right decision. In organizations, it has been mainly seen that the information gathered from the members are ultimately used to reach an effective decision-making. The alternatives that are decided are useful as well as applicable for this particular issue but keeping in mind the severity of the circumstance after waiting their advantages and disadvantages only one final decision is taken. Another concept of organizational behavior that is associated with this issue is a team that is mainly the problem solving teamwork is being highlighted in reaching the decisions (Robbins, & Judge, 2012). Problem solving teams mainly comprise 5-12 members, in which members from different department can be involve sharing and suggesting ideas as well as techniques for improving the problematic situation. The team who was mainly involved in the problem solving team are the president, consultants, the front-line employees, the senior management team as well as the owner’s family member. Everyone has some contribution in solving this problem and reaching to decision that what ways they have to deal with this problem.
The alternatives for action that are stated in this case study for the issue that Earls is facing are described as below along with the pros and cons each are having -
The very first alternative that came up is to do nothing. That is no step will be taken and the restaurant will wait for this complicated time to pass. As nothing stays, forever so, this situation will also not stay for long and thus, they must sit quietly without taking any action.
This kind of issues in the media are there for very short period of time as it can very soon taken up by other major issues
Any publication is it good or bad is bringing name recognition to Earls. Thus, getting the publicity is in a way beneficial
This kind of a controversy can be very hazardous to Earl’s reputation. Thus if they keep numb then that would definitely affect them more.
They will lose loyal as well as potential customers along with those efficient employees who were working in this restaurant having the faith in the organization that they stand by their words.
It will also negatively affect the bond of buyers (company) and suppliers.
The second alternative is that Earls can return to buying the normally raised beef in the locality. Along with this, they can compensate to the Canadian beef industry for taking such a decision and move on.
This will maintain peace among the stakeholders as well as the ranchers.
This can surely protect their long-term interests of their business.
The disadvantage of this alternative can be that they might neglect the obvious concerns of Earl’s customers as well as employees.
The front-line employees who actually faced the critical comments will get very upset if Earl’s surrender.
Lastly, the only solution remains where they can stick to what right decision they have taken and accordingly should proceed in serving humane beef that is nurtured without using hormones, steroids or any kind of antibiotics.
The ranchers of Canada can come to their confidence if they apologize to them
Usage of smaller production of Canadian beef
This implementation will be very much time consuming as raising a new generation cattle without using any antibiotics, hormones or steroids.
The final recommendation would be that Earls must not back off and stick to what is right. However, the main rationale for choosing this is that if they stand by what they have decided then this will definitely have a positive effect on their reputation. By sticking to their act, they will definitely turn on many potential and loyal customers. Moreover, they also believe that they have not done any mistake by taking such a decision for their chain of restaurant but the only drawback was that before announcing their decision publicly they should have taken the ranchers of Canada in their confidence. The only course of action that Earl’s should take now is that firstly, they must apologize to the Canadian ranchers which will calm the agitated rancher a little and followed that Earls can further utilize as much as small production of Canadian beef which can meet the criteria of the restaurant. This is the only solution they have for now because they cannot shift back off from their idea. However, the key stakeholders of Earl is mainly their customers, suppliers and employees (mainly the front-line employees) and the ways in which the decision will have an impact on each of them are as follows-
Customers- After this decision the customer’s perceived value (CPV) will be enhanced. Thus, the customers will be more loyal to this restaurant as this decision will benefit them.
Suppliers- Suppliers including the Canadian ranchers will also be satisfied as Earls is apologizing from them as well as they are not isolating them totally rather using small amount of Canadian beef.
Employees- Employees will become more loyal to the restaurant because after being bullied by the criticizers they will at least get the assurance that the organization stood by them without giving up their idea.
To conclude this report, it can be said that the main issue that the Earls restaurant is facing is that they have announced without taking the Canadian ranchers that they will serve only humane beef that are nurtured without the use of any kind of hormones, antibiotics or steroids. They have further posted their message in the social media stating that they are the first chain of restaurants in North America will be serving beef from the certified humane farms. This somehow irate the Alberta Beef Producers who counter attack them by saying that Earls are in a way saying that Canadian ranchers do not raise their cattle humanely. However, among from the alternative actions they must stand by what is correct that is stick to their idea but they must also rectify their mistake, which was that before announcing their idea they should have taken the Canadian ranchers under their confidence. Thus, they must apologize to the ranchers and include small portion of Canadian beef to their restaurants.
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