Sunday, March 22, 2020

L.L. Bean Item forecasting case study Essay Example

L.L. Bean Item forecasting case study Paper Harvard Business School 9-893-003 Rev. September 7, 1993 L. L. Bean, Inc. Item Forecasting and Inventory Management When you order an item from an L. L. Bean catalog and were out of stock, Im the guy to blame. And if we end up liquidating a bunch of womens wool cashmere blazers, its my fault. No one understands how tough it is. Mark Fasold, Vice President† Inventory Management, was describing the challenge of item forecasting at L. L. Bean. Forecasting demand at the aggregate level is a piece of cake†if were running short of expectations, we Just dip deeper into our customer list and send out some more atalogs. But we have to decide how many chamois shirts and how many chino trousers to buy, and if were too high on one and too low on the other, its no solace to know that we were exactly right on the average. Top management understands this in principle, but they are understandably disturbed that errors at the item level are so large. In a catalog business like ours, you really capture demand. Thats the good news. The bad news is, you learn what a lousy Job youre doing trying to match demand with supply. Its not like that in a department store, say, where a customer ay come in looking for a dress shirt and lets the display of available shirts generate the demand for a particular item. Or if a customer has some particular item in mind but its not available, he or she may Just walk out of the store. In a department store you never know the real demand or the consequences of understocking. But in our business every sale is generated by a customer demanding a particular item, either by mail or by phone. If we havent got it, and the customer cancels the order, we know it. Rol Fessenden, Manager†Inventory Systems, added: We know that forecast errors are inevitable. Competition, the economy, weather are all factors. But demand at the item level is also affected by customer behavior, which is very hard to predict, or even to explain in retrospect. Every so often some item takes off and becomes a runaway, far exceeding our demand forecasts. Once in a while we can detect the trend early on and, with a cooperative vendor, get more product manufactured in a hurry and chase demand; most of the time, however, the runaways leave us Just turning customers away. We will write a custom essay sample on L.L. Bean Item forecasting case study specifically for you for only $16.38 $13.9/page Order now We will write a custom essay sample on L.L. Bean Item forecasting case study specifically for you FOR ONLY $16.38 $13.9/page Hire Writer We will write a custom essay sample on L.L. Bean Item forecasting case study specifically for you FOR ONLY $16.38 $13.9/page Hire Writer And for every runaway, theres a dog item that sells way below expectations and that you couldnt even give away to customers. Annual costs of lost sales and backorders were conservatively estimated to be $11 million; costs associated with having too much of the wrong inventory were an additional $10 million. This case was prepared by Professor Arthur Schleifer, Jr. as the basis for class discussion rather than to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of an administrative situation. Copyright 1992 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. To order copies or request permission to reproduce materials, call 1-800-545-7685, write Harvard Business School Publishing, Boston, MA 02163, or go to ttp://www. hbsp. harvard. edu. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, used in a spreadsheet, or transmitted in any form or by any means†electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise†without the permission of Harvard Business School. 893-003 L. L. Bean Background In 1912 Leon Leonwood Bean invented the Maine Hunting Shoe (a combination of lightweight leather uppers and rubber bottoms). He obtained a list of nonresident Maine hunting license holders, prepared a descriptive mail-order circular, set up hop in his brothers basement in Freeport, Maine, and started a nationwide mail- order business. The inauguration of the U. S. Post Offices domestic parcel post service in that year provided a means of delivering orders to customers. When L. L. Bean died in 1967, at the age of 94, sales had reached $4. 75 million, his company employed 200 people, and an annual catalog was distributed to a mailing list of 600,000 people. L. L. s Golden Rule had been Sell good merchandise at a reasonable profit, treat your customers like human beings, and theyll always come back for more. When Leon Gorman, L. L. s grandson, succeeded him as president in 1967, he sought to expand and modernize the business without deviating from his grandfathers Golden Rule. By 1991, L. L. Bean, Inc. as a major cataloger, manufacturer, and retailer in the outdoor sporting specialty field: Catalog sales in 1990 were $528 million, with an additional $71 million in sales from the companys 50,000 square-foot retail store in Freeport. Twenty-two different catalogs (often referred to as books by company employees)†114 million pieces in all†were mailed that year. There were six million active customers. The mail-order business had been giving way to tele phone orders after the company installed nationwide 800 service in 1986. By 1991, 80% of all orders came in by telephone. Major direct- mail competitors included Lands End, Eddie Bauer, Talbots, and Orvis. A 1991 Consumer Reports survey on customer satisfaction with mail-order companies found L. L. Bean heading the list for overall satisfaction in every category for which they offered merchandise. In explaining why L. L. Bean had not expanded its retail operations beyond the one store in Freeport, Leon Gorman contrasted the direct- arketing (catalog) and retail businesses. The two approaches require very different kinds of management. Mail-order marketers are very analytic, quantitatively oriented. Retailers have to be creative, promotional, pizzazzy, merchandise-oriented. Its tough to assemble one management team that can handle both functions. 1 Product Lines L. L. Beans product line was classified hierarchically (see Exhibit 1). At the highest level of aggregation were Merchandise Groups: mens and womens accessories, mens and womens apparel, mens and womens footwear, camping equipment, etc. Within each Group were Demand Centers; for instance, womens apparel had as Demand Centers knit shirts, sweaters, pants, skirts, Jackets and pullovers, etc. Each Demand Center was further broken down into Item Sequences; for example, womens sweaters consisted of Midnight Mesa Handknit Cardigans, Indian Point Pullovers, Lambswool Turtlenecks, and about twenty other products. Item Sequences were further broken down into individual items, distinguished primarily by color; it was at this item level that forecasts had to be issued and, ultimately, purchase commitments had to be made. About 6,000 items appeared in one or another of the catalogs that were issued in the course of a year. 1 L. L. Bean, Inc. Corporate Strategy, Harvard Business School Case (581-159), 1981. 21tems were further broken down by size into stock-keeping units, or SWs. This was done by applying standard size-distribution breakdowns. Although an inappropriate distribution could lead to excessive inventory of some sizes and stockouts of others, management concern was directed to the item level, since there was no evidence of a better system than assuming that the distribut ion of demand by size would behave in the uture as it had in the past, and would be indistinguishable from one item to another. Items were also classified into three seasonal categories (spring, fall, and all year), and into two additional categories (new or never out) that described whether the item was a recent or more permanent member of the companys offerings, and consequently characterized the amount of historical demand data available for the item. The Bean Catalogs The major catalogs†spring, summer, fall, and Christmas†each came out in several versions. A full catalog, running from 116 to 152 pages, went to Beans regular ustomers. A smaller prospect catalog was circulated to potential customers; it contained primarily a subset of items from the full catalog. (Bean identified such prospect customers in a variety of ways, for example, through the purchase of mailing lists, or by recording recipients of gifts from other Bean customers. ) In addition, a number of specialty catalogs†Spring Weekend, Summer Camp, Fly Fishing, etc. † presented items that were unique to that catalog, as well as some items found in the major catalogs. There was some overlap in circulation: the best ustomers received almost all the catalogs, and those customers known, through past purchasing behavior, to be interested in various specialties might receive an appropriate specialty catalog in addition to the seasonal full catalogs. Item Forecasting Each catalog had a gestation period of about nine months, and its creation involved merchandising, design, product, and inventory specialists. For example, the initial conceptualization for the Fall, 1991 season began in October, 1990. Preliminary forecasts of total sales for each catalog were made in December. Product managers eveloped preliminary item forecasts by book in the December, 1990 to March, 1991 time frame. Layout and pagination of the books began in January, 1991. Initial commitments to vendors were made in January and February. In the subsequent months, as the catalogs took shape, item forecasts were repeatedly revised and finally frozen by May 1. By early July a black-and-white version of the layout was available internally. At this point, the product managers handed off their product line to the inventory managers. The completed Fall 1991 catalogs were in the hands of customers around August 1 . As the catalog generated demand, inventory managers decided on additional commitments to vendors, scheduled replenishments, handled backorders, etc. This catalog remained active through January, 1992; inventory left over at that time might be liquidated, marked down and sold through special L. L. Bean promotions, or carried over to the next year. Scott Sklar was a buyer for mens shirts. He described the forecasting process as follows: Four or five of us†my inventory buyer, some product people, and I†meet to forecast shirt sales by book. We start by ranking various items in terms of expected ollar sales. Then we actually assign dollars in accordance with the ranking. Theres discussion, arguments, complaints. People invent rules of thumb. I say invent, because there arent any good rules of thumb. We set this up on an Excel spreadsheet. We look at the book forecast and make adjustments accordingly. We look at the total of forecasted shirt sales and check it for reality. Does it feel good? Does it make sense? We do it book by book, item by item, and thats how we get an item level forecast. Of course, when we add a new item, we have to make a Judgment: will this item enerate incremental demand, and if not, from what items is it going to steal demand? And then those items need to be adjusted accordingly. 3 Barbara Hamaluk, a buyer for mens knit shirts, observed that the sum of the item forecasts for a catalog was often at variance with the dollar target for that book. Usually this roll-up comes in on the high side, so you try to reduce forecasts on certain items. Or you can Just say, if were too high by 10%, well Just slash everything across the board by 10%. We really ought to have an intermediate level of forecasts t the Demand Center level, reconcile item forecasts with Demand Center forecasts, and the latter with the book forecast. Production Commitments The typical producti on lead time for most domestic orders was eight to twelve weeks. (Of course, deliveries against a commitment could be scheduled to conform to the anticipated pattern of in-season demand. With some vendors who cooperated with L. L. Beans Quick Response initiative, it was possible, after observing some early- season demand, to place a second order, which would be delivered in sufficient time to meet late-season demand. However, with many domestic and most offshore vendors, lead times were sufficiently long so that it was impractical to place a second commitment order in the course of the season. (In the remainder of this case, then, discussion will be limited to these one-shot commitments. The commitments were generally not equal in size to the forecasts, but were determined in two steps as follows: First, historical forecast errors (expressed as AIF ratios the ratio of actual demand to forecast demand) were computed for each item in the previous year, and the frequency distribution o f these errors was compiled cross items. 3 The frequency distribution of past forecast errors was then used as a probability distribution for the as yet unrealized future forecast errors. For example, if 50% of the forecast errors for new items in the past year had been between 0. and 1. 6, then it would be assumed that with probability 0. 5, the forecast error for any new item in the current year also would fall between 0. 7 and 1. 6. So in such a case, if the frozen forecast for a particular item were 1,000 units, it was then assumed that with probability 0. 5, actual demand for that item would end up being between 700 nd 1,600 units. Next, each items commitment quantity was determined by balancing the individual items contribution margin if demanded against its liquidation cost (or value) if not demanded. Suppose, for example, that an item cost Bean $1 5, would regularly sell for $30, and could be sold at liquidation for $10. The gain for selling a marginal unit would be $30 15 = $15; the loss for failing to sell the marginal unit would be the cost less the liquidation value, i. e. $15 10 = $5. Accordingly, the optimal order size should be the 0. 75 fractile of the items probability distribution of demand. Suppose the 0. 75 fractile of the distribution of forecast errors was 1. 3, and the frozen forecast for that item was for 1,000 units. Then the 0. 75 fractile of the demand distribution would be 1,000 x 1. = 1,300, and Bean would make a commitment for 1,300 units. Rol Fessenden expressed concern that the methodology treated the errors associated with all never out items as equally representative of the forecast errors that might be anticipated for the forecast demand of any never out item (and similarly for new items). mioud think that the error distribution for some of our buyers might be ighter than for other buyers, or that the distribution for womens sweaters might have more dispersion than the distribution for mens footwear, but we cant find any real differences. Also, Im not entirely convinced that we go about estimating contribution margin and liquidation cost correctly. Mark Fasold was worried about the wide dispersion in forecast errors, both for never outs and new items. He was also concerned about the implications of the methodology: If the cost 3This was done separately for new items and for never outs; not surprisingly, the historical error istribution of never outs had less dispersion than that of new items. No other way of segmenting items had revealed significantly different distributions of forecast errors. 4 associated with understocking exceeds the cost of overstocking, which is the usual case here, we end up committing to more than the frozen forecast. And for new items, about which we obviously know very little, the excess over the frozen forecast is even greater than for never outs. The buyers are understandably upset when we commit to more than they forecast; they perceive us as going way out on a limb for new items. Exhibit 1 5

Friday, March 6, 2020

Field Marshal John French in World War I

Field Marshal John French in World War I John French - Early Life Career: Born September 28, 1852 at Ripple Vale, Kent, John French was son of Commander John Tracy William French and his wife Margaret. The son of a naval officer, French intended to follow in his fathers footsteps and sought training at Portsmouth after attending Harrow School. Appointed a midshipman in 1866, French soon found himself assigned to HMS Warrior. While aboard, he developed a debilitating fear of heights which forced him to abandon his naval career in 1869. After serving in the Suffolk Artillery Militia, French transferred to the British Army in February 1874. Initially serving with the 8th Kings Royal Irish Hussars, he moved through a variety of cavalry regiments and achieved the rank of major in 1883. John French - In Africa: In 1884, French took part in the Sudan Expedition which moved up the Nile River with the goal of relieving Major General Charles Gordons forces which were besieged at Khartoum. En route, he saw action at Abu Klea on January 17, 1885. Though the campaign proved a failure, French was promoted to lieutenant colonel the following month. Returning to Britain, he received command of the 19th Hussars in 1888 before moving into various high-level staff posts. During the late 1890s, French led the 2nd Cavalry Brigade at Canterbury before assuming command of the 1st Cavalry Brigade at Aldershot. John French - Second Boer War: Returning to Africa in late 1899, French took command of the Cavalry Division in South Africa. He was thus in place when the Second Boer War commenced that October. After defeating General Johannes Kock at Elandslaagte on October 21, French took part in the larger relief of Kimberley. In February 1900, his horsemen played a key role in the triumph at Paardeberg. Promoted to the permanent rank of major general on October 2, French was also knighted. A trust subordinate of Lord Kitchener, the Commander-in-Chief in South Africa, he later served as Commander of Johannesburg and Cape Colony. With the end of the conflict in 1902, French was elevated to lieutenant general and appointed to the Order of St. Michael and St. George in recognition of his contributions. John French - Trusted General: Returning to Aldershot, French assumed command of 1st Army Corps in September 1902. Three years later he became the overall commander at Aldershot. Promoted to general in February 1907, he became Inspector-General of the Army that December. One of the British Armys stars, French received the honorary appointment of Aide-de-Camp General to the King on June 19, 1911. This was followed by an appointment as Chief of the Imperial General Staff the following March. Made field marshal in June 1913, he resigned his position on the Imperial General Staff in April 1914 after a disagreement with Prime Minister H. H. Asquiths government regarding the Curragh Mutiny. Though he resumed his post as Inspector-General of the Army on August 1, Frenchs tenure proved brief due to the outbreak of World War I. John French - To the Continent: With the British entry into the conflict, French was appointed to command the newly-formed British Expeditionary Force. Consisting of two corps and a cavalry division, the BEF began preparations to deploy to the Continent. As planning moved forward, French clashed with Kitchener, then serving as Secretary of State for War, over where the BEF should be placed. While Kitchener advocated a position near Amiens from which it could mount a counterattack against the Germans, French preferred Belgium where it would be supported by the Belgium Army and their fortresses. Backed by the Cabinet, French won the debate and began moving his men across the Channel. Reaching the front, the British commanders temper and prickly disposition soon led to difficulties in dealing with his French allies, namely General Charles Lanrezac who commanded the French Fifth Army on his right. Establishing a position at Mons, the BEF entered action on August 23 when it was attacked by the German First Army. Though mounting a tenacious defense, the BEF was forced to retreat as Kitchener had anticipated when advocating the Amiens position. As French fell back, he issued a confusing series of orders which were ignored by Lieutenant General Sir Horace Smith-Dorriens II Corps which fought a bloody defensive battle at Le Cateau on August 26. As the retreat continued, French began to lose confidence and became indecisive. Shaken by the high losses sustained, he became increasingly concerned about his mens welfare rather than aiding the French. John French - The Marne to Digging In: As French began contemplating withdrawing to the coast, Kitchener arrived on September 2 for an emergency meeting. Though angered by Kitcheners interference, the discussion convinced him to keep the BEF at the front and to take part in French Commander-in-Chief General Joseph Joffres counteroffensive along the Marne. Attacking during the First Battle of the Marne, Allied forces were able to halt the German advance. In the weeks after the battle, both sides began the Race to the Sea in an effort to outflank the other. Reaching Ypres, French and the BEF fought the bloody First Battle of Ypres in October and November. Holding the town, it became a point of contention for the rest of the war. As the front stabilized, both sides began constructing elaborate trench systems. In an effort to break the deadlock, French opened the Battle of Neuve Chapelle in March 1915. Though some ground was gained, casualties were high and no breakthrough was attained. Following the setback, French blamed the failure on a lack of artillery shells which initiated the Shell Crisis of 1915. The following month, the Germans began the Second Battle of Ypres which saw them take and inflict substantial losses but fail to capture the town. In May, French returned to the offensive but was bloodily repulsed at Aubers Ridge. Reinforced, the BEF attacked again in September when it began the Battle of Loos. Little was gained in three weeks of fighting and French received criticism for his handling of British reserves during the battle. John French - Later Career: Having clashed repeatedly with Kitchener and having lost the confidence of the Cabinet, French was relieved in December 1915 and replaced by General Sir Douglas Haig. Appointed to command the Home Forces, he was elevated to Viscount French of Ypres in January 1916. In this new position, he oversaw the suppression of the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland. Two years later, in May 1918, the Cabinet made French British Viceroy, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, and Supreme Commander of the British Army in Ireland. Fighting with various nationalist groups, he sought to destroy Sinn Fà ©in. As a result of these actions, he was the target of a failed assassination attempt in December 1919. Resigning his post on April 30, 1921, French moved into retirement. Made Earl of Ypres in June 1922, French also received a retirement grant of  £50,000 in recognition of his services. Contracting cancer of the bladder, he died on May 22, 1925, while at Deal Castle. Following a funeral, French was buried at St. Mary the Virgin Churchyard in Ripple,Kent. Selected Sources First World War: Field Marshal John FrenchTrenches on the Web: Field Marshal John French

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Monopolies in Todays Market Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 2000 words

Monopolies in Todays Market - Essay Example Atimes, monopolies exist as a result of government backings in which case the monopolies provide goods, products or services which the government considers essential to the well being of the people. The absence of supply curve in the monopolized market causes inefficient allocation of society's resources. Therefore there is that tendency for a monopolist to charge high prices and probably making higher profits compared with firms in perfect competition. The objective of this paper is to unravel the role of monopolies in today's market and the implications of technology and systems on the monopolies. The rest of this paper examines different types of monopoly, its revenue, monopoly and price discriminations, and implications of technology and systems. (a) Pure Monopoly: This is a type of monopoly that exists in a particular region or city in which its products have no close substitutes. This makes it possible for the monopolist to charge extra prices because their products are necessities. (b) Natural Monopoly: A monopoly that exists because of economies of scale it enjoys in which large scale production brings lower average cost. Even though a competitor arises in the industry lower prices the monopolist would charge is capable of sending the competitor off the market. (c) Efficiency Monopoly: When government does not legalize monopoly, a monopoly may exist largely due to its ability to satisfy the customers in which case competition is inadvertently rule out. (d) Legal Monopoly: This form of monopoly has government backing such that laws are enacted to simply rule out competition. Wikipedia says "when such a monopoly is granted to a private party, it is a government granted monopoly; when it is operated by government itself, it is government monopoly or state monopoly". Monopoly Revenue Basically, a monopolist faces downward sloping demand curve which is also the firm's average revenue curve. As the monopolist sells a single price for its products, average revenue per product is the same as the price. For the monopolist to increase its sales it charges lower unit price for its products. At price P1 the monopolist only manages to sell Q1 quantity of the product; in order to increase its sales it reduces the price from P1 to P2 and as such sales is increased from Q1 to Q2 which he now gains in figure 1 below. Given the above scenario, the differential of the total revenue in relation to quantity gives marginal revenue which shows that the additional revenue large enough to offset the reduction in price. Figure 1: Showing Monopolist's gain brought about by price reduction. However, the monopolist maximizes profit where marginal revenue equals marginal cost. The reason is the since marginal cost is always greater than zero the monopolist will operate at profit because marginal revenue will be positive and where demand is elastic. If the monopolist stops production where marginal cost is less than marginal revenue, he will be leaving his profit untapped while quantity in which marginal revenue is greater than marginal cost the firm will be operating at losses. Profit maximizing price is determined by drawing a line where marginal co

Monday, February 3, 2020

Commercial uses of GPS Assignment Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 500 words - 7

Commercial uses of GPS - Assignment Example GPS-enabled transporters can be activated when removed from selected machines and provide location updates for recovery. Apart from machines, humans can insert GPS devices in their body for tracking, in case they operate in insecure areas, or are wealthy enough to afford one. A satellite-linked GPS receiver can provide accurate navigational data on the location of a victim and aid in a rescue mission. In shipping, GPS has diverse valuable applications in navigation and service delivery. It is applicable if a company pairs a GPS tracker with a radio transponder for tracking purposes. It can ease their operations significantly, for instance, identification of problems in the course of transportation. The resultant up-to-the-minute update on a movement of products is helpful for companies, as it can help transportation trucks avoid traffic or accident routes. In addition, it is useful in commercial transportation, for instance, one can determine the distance and time a bus or train takes to arrive at its destination. In the contemporary society, companies use GPS in their advertisement and marketing strategies. GPS receivers in portable services such as cell phones enable location-based service delivery in terms of marketing. The GPS device offers estimated geographical location when one connects to a network using a GPS enabled device. In addition, social networking companies such as Twitter have taken up the trend, and offer services to ‘nearby’ consumers. Personalization of service delivery promotes efficiency because it connects virtual presence to real-world nearness. In addition, GPS is widely applicable in survey work and real estate processes. It saves hours of survey work because it enables verification of property location and property size online.  

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Social Integration in UAE Essay

Social Integration in UAE Essay Section: 1 Social Integration Essay The process of social integration of a complex consisting of several dimensions involving the participation in work and production, and real consumption, is looking forward to the many, and to participate in caring for the public and social practice, and much of the social interactions.  On this basis, the individual is socially integrated if he takes part in the core activities of the society in which they live. The core activities are intended to be able to purchase goods and services, to participate in activities of economic and social value, to participate in decision-making process at the local level or national origin, and integration with family, friends and communities.  Social integration concept created by each society and every group for the purposes of individuals and groups from the situation of disagreement and conflict to the situation of living together. It also reflects the social integration of the form of access to political and legal systems necessary to make these rights a reality. There is a deep awareness in the UAE that the only guarantee of sustained development is continuous investment in education, health and social services, with the provision of meaningful employment for all.[1] (Social development, 2009), but as everybody knows that money doesnt last forever and they should think of looking for something else that they can use from their children or their boys and girls that they spent a huge amount on giving them the best life they ever thought of it or dreamt of in order to pay them some of what they have done to them. The UAE population increased by a staggering 74.8 per cent between 1995 and 2005, the date of the last census. This is one of the highest population growth rates in the world. Estimated by the Ministry of the Economy (MoE) at 4.488 million in 2007, the population is expected to increase by 6.12 per cent to reach 4.76 million at the end of 2008 and by 6.31 per cent to 5.06 million at the end of 2009. [2](Population, 2009), with that increase people will have communities of their own whether they were expats or locals that will discriminate their own people, so the UAE should unit them and dont discriminate them in order to raise their way of life. It is generally accepted that there is a need for additional policies to guarantee a more significant representation of UAE nationals in the labor force.[3] (Labor, 2009) these guarantees will protect the UAE nationals in the labor force because of the increase of the expatriates labor force and to protect UAE nationals because they have a right to be prior than the other nationalities. There always should be awareness about driving in the country because for the last decades there are so many casualties whether they were men, women or even kids and if it is remained without waking the people up then even statistics wont be able to calculate them 2009) these guarantees will protect the UAE nationals in the labor force because of the increase of the expatriates labor force and to protect UAE nationals because they have a right to be prior than the other nationalities. There always should be awareness about driving in the country because for the last decades there are so many casualties whether they were men, women or even kids and if it is remained without waking the people up then even statistics wont be able to calculate them. Reference Page [1] [2] [3]

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Challenges Faced by Modern Managers of Organisations and Their Solutions

| |challenges faced by modern managers of organizations and their solutions | Lack of capital Lack of capital is often the most critical challenge that a successful manager or leader faces as its very success creates this and it quickly becomes a vicious circle. Without very diligent cash flow management and/or raising of more capital, including debt, the business often is constrained by capital as it grows. Often the profit in one operating cycle is insufficient to fund the extra working capital required for the next operating cycle. Many capable managers cannot overcome the obstacles in their businesses cash flow cycle and cannot understand why bankers and other lenders often cannot provide the financing as the manager often does not have the security to support the debt. The solution is often easier than most entrepreneurs realize. It often starts with a plan to see what your cash needs are and when your cash needs arise. Then one is in a position to manage it and focus on the cash management techniques most likely to be successful in his/her business. Lack of management skills Lack of management skills is a problem that is very difficult to deal with in most small and medium enterprises as the size of the senior management team is necessarily limited. These areas of weakness could be in finance, human resources, marketing or any area where the current management does not have the expertise, or the time to deal with the issues. It can be solved by determining the weak areas and then developing a plan for dealing with those challenges. Solutions can be as simple as assigning the responsibility to an existing manager with a requirement to watch for the obvious pitfalls, to hiring a person part-time or a consultant. †¢ Lack of focus †¢ Ignoring risks in their assessment of alternatives and opportunities †¢ Lack of a plan †¢ Failure to plan for issues absorbing the majority of your time Scope changes – Insufficient team skills – To quote a colleague, â€Å"Availability is not a skill. † †¢ Vision and goals are not well-defined Ineffective communication 1. Regular promotion – Regular promotion in a fixed interval keeping in view consumer taste and preference is a biggest problem. It not only needs an innovative mind and lot of advertisement money but has become a difficult task to cater the needs of so many different type of consumers like some are health con scious and needs low fat diet or low sodium diet while other prefers combo offers . Most of them also want that half plate and even quarter plate must be introduce in the menu . So when these promotional offer are launched only the expectations of few consumers are met. 2. Availability of substitute at cheaper price- Another problem is the availability of substitute fast food at cheaper price for instance A fast food shop in a Food court has to compete its competitor who may perhaps has a different food menu to offer but his rates are cheep and people my often switch to buy that cheaper product. For instance a steemed sweet corn corner outlet selles a cup of sweet corn say Rs 20 and it is near by a soup corner outlet and the cost of a soup is less than a cup of sweet corn sy Rs 10. There are chances that most of the people who may have come to have a sweet corn may change their food coice and have a soup in double quantity.

Friday, January 10, 2020

Why Marjane Satrapi Graphic Form

Why Marjane Satrapi chose to tell her story Persepolis in the graphic form The graphic novel Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi was written in the graphic medium to appeal to a wider audience. Literary critic, Manuela Constantino, proposes that â€Å"the combination of a visual representation and a child’s point of view makes the story easily accessible and therefore attracts a wide range of readers. † (Constantino, 2008: 2) Another plausible reason for Satrapi's choice to do the novel in this medium is the apparent popularity graphic novels enjoyed at the point of the memoir’s publication.Writing the novel graphically, brings the Middle Eastern novel closer to its Western readers. As Constantino wrote; Satrapi emphasizes â€Å"the universal qualities of her child narrator and the details of her experiences that would be familiar to her Western readers. † (Constantino, 2008: 2) Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi in the graphic form deems effective because it is writ ten in a form that is recognizable to her target readers, written in somewhat a ‘universal’ language. Satrapi chose to tell her story in the graphic form to better connect with her readers. It is apparent that Satrapi’s targeted audience are mainly Western Christians.Over forty percent of the world’s population who practice a religion are Christians. The religious stature of the main characters made the novel accessible to its non Muslim readers. Being able to observe Christians in a predominantly Islamic country, opens a window to a life Satrapi's readers could only dare to imagine. A world where u are told what to believe and what to think. It is therefore logical to target the sensitive majority of the population to educate about the Iranian political struggle and to get her story across. The novel in itself is about driving away the West from the conservative Iranian nation.Driving away the things her targeted readers consider their norm. Westerners an d others around the world try to â€Å"seek insight into a country and a nation that have been deemed â€Å"evil† and an imminent threat to Western society. † (Malek, 2006: 10) To aid the West in its quest to â€Å"seek insight† into the nation of Iran, Satrapi wrote the novel in a medium that is very closely related to and very familiar in the Western culture. As demonstrated in: â€Å"†¦ They found records and videocassettes at their place, a deck of cards, a chess set. In other words, everything that’s banned. The scene leads the reader to feel unwanted and driven off alongside Marji, an Iranian who embraces the reader’s culture as demonstrated in page one hundred and twenty six , from her Iranian world. The reader and Marji form a special bond – they become a unit. This common ground builds a stronger connection between Marji and the reader leading the audience to feel a stronger form of empathy towards the child, as they are now p art of the cultural issue.Satrapi also chose to relate socio-political issues, conflict and loss to Arabic writing; as demonstrated in page eighty seven, in the panel where in two women are arguing. Satrapi, 2003) Their banter is written in a language unfamiliar to her targeted readers leading the reader to classify fighting and arguments as foreign and that the very presence of these women and their conflict is alienating. Another instance is when Pardisse reads her letter to her dead father, a letter written in the same foreign writing – grief is then related to this alien language. (Satrapi, 2003: 86) And on page one hundred and thirty two, in the panel where The Guardians of the Revolution (women’s branch) were introduced, one will observe the same unreadable writing resembling Arabic on their vehicle. Satrapi, 2003) Her use of all these subtle details in the graphic aspect of the novel adds to the effectiveness of the medium in that it forces the reader to lose al l sense of familiarity with the antagonistic characters. The visual aspect of this novel aided in Satrapi’s depiction of Marji as someone who embraces the western culture, the reader's culture, with the familiar images of Nike sneakers, jeans, jean jackets, and chocolates, as well as Kim Wilde and Iron Maiden songs. (Satrapi, 2003: 126) This brings another dimension to the relationship between Marji and her readers.Writing the novel in graphic form brings the Middle Eastern graphic novel closer to its Western neighbours because it is in a medium that is recognizable in the West. In addition, Satrapi’s depiction of Muslim leaders as â€Å"uneducated, primitive, and narrow-minded brutes† strengthens her connection with her Western readers whose perception of Muslim extremists might indeed be quite similar to the one crafted in the autobiography. (Constantino, 2008: 4) The novel Persepolis is effective because it was written to please a specific type of community.I t uses language and cultural barriers in the illustrations and text to further separate the reader from the antagonists. â€Å"Satrapi’s Persepolis appeared, significantly, at a time when memoirs have been experiencing a great surge of popularity. † (Malek, 2006: 8) The time of the publication of the memoir deemed critical to its success. It was published around the time where graphic novels were coined â€Å"the most important narrative mode of our contemporary culture. † (Miller, 2000: 421) It shared the lime light with other graphic novels, the likes of Craig Thompson’s â€Å"Blankets† and Joe Sacco’s â€Å"The Fixer†. Time, 2003) Satrapi chose the perfect time to debut her graphic memoir as she was able to ride ‘the literary high’ comics were experiencing at that point in time. A probable reason why Satrapi chose to tell her story in the graphic medium is the effectiveness and popularity of graphic novels at the point of the novel’s publication. Writing the novel in graphic form and through the eyes of a child allows the issue to be digested with fewer objections by the reader. The novel written through the eyes of a child makes it easier for the reader to comprehend the situation.It gives the story a comedic approach to a devastating period in Iranian history. â€Å"Readers of all ages can identify with the child, feel for her, and learn with her about the complexities of national and international politics. †(Constantino, 2003: 4) The connection shared between Marji and the reader strengthens their bond and heightens the effectiveness of the story. It is a medium closely related to fun. Writing the novel in graphic form ‘dumbs down’ the brutality of the whole situation. A frame on page fifty two illustrates Ahmadi’s gruesome fate in prison: chopped into several pieces. Satrapi, 2003) Another panel depicting the same kind of ‘turned down' brutality is a s cene on page seventy six where a woman is being stabbed on the leg. These otherwise gruesome scenes can be better understood because the reader can look at it, take it as it is, and envy the child’s innocence and simplistic thought process. Constantino adds: â€Å"The text is easily accessible and seemingly transparent. It makes many people feel that they are educating themselves while they are being entertained.† Although the text might seem, in a way due to its graphic medium, juvenile, its purpose is to educate and tell an ‘untold story. Some might argue that depicting critical situations such as the Islamic Revolution in a form of graphic medium takes away the severity of the circumstances however; it can definitely be counter argued by the undeniable phrase ‘it’s so simple it works. ’ The visual element allows her to include the offstage action as part of the main narrative flow. Instead of having to impart information as separate inciden ts, where its impact is reduced by removing it from the context of the story, we see things as they happen, increasing the emotional mpact of the moment. The directness of her work allows her to do two things excellently: to distinguish between individuals easily with just small strokes of the pen and make her depiction of horrors, death, torture, and anguish, emotionally realistic without being graphic or gruesome. Persepolis was written in the graphic form to create a stronger connection with the material and its readers. Persepolis is a powerful story about a person’s struggle for self identity.The different occurrences in Marji’s life that define her for who she is was written in the graphic medium to make it easier for her audience to connect with her as people in search of who they are. Writing the novel in graphic form offers a sense of familiarity with Satrapi’s targeted Western audience. It brings the unfamiliar Iranian world, issues and their tradition s closer to the West’s classification of ‘normal’. It uses religion (specifically Christianity) in illustration and text to even deepen the connection between Marji and her audience. It forms a common ground, a sense of belonging to the same movement.It is also plausible that one of the reasons why the novel was written in the graphic form was to ride the growing popularity of comics at that particular point in time. Publishing the graphic novel to a community who openly accept comics as a form of sophisticated literature presented an opportunity for the novel to succeed. And lastly, it was written in graphic text to make it easier for the reader to comprehend the situation as these instances don’t usually happen to her targeted Western audience. It makes watching people die a little bit more bearable as it is depicted in a way that a child might perceive death.Satrapi choosing to tell her story in the form of a graphic novel not only shows us how far that medium has come as a means of expression, but allows us a glimpse into a world that few of us know anything about.Word Count: 1707 Citation Arnold, Andrew. â€Å"The Best and Worst: 2003. † Time. November 13 2010. Website. ;lt; http://www. time. com/time/bestandworst/2003/comics. html;gt; Malek, Amy. â€Å"Memoir as Iranian Exile Cultural Production: A Case Study of Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis Series. † Iranian Studies: Journal of the International Society for Iranian Studies 39. 3 (2006): 353-380. MLA International Bibliography. EBSCO. Web. 15 Nov. 2010. Print. Manuela Costantino. â€Å"Marji: Popular Commix Heroine Breathing Life into the Writing of History. † Canadian Review of American Studies 38. 3 (2008): 429-447. Project MUSE. Cameron Library, Edmonton, AB. 17 Aug. 2010. Website. ;lt;http://muse. jhu. edu/;gt; Nancy Miller, â€Å"But Enough About Me, What Do You Think of My Memoir? † Yale Journal of Criticism 13, no. 2 (2000): 421. Print. Satrapi , Marjane. Persepolis. New York: Pantheon Books. 2003. Print â€Å"World Religions. † The World Almanac and Book of Facts  ©2010. 2010. Print.