Exercise 1 September 8, 2010 Though business has been steadily declining over the past five years, it still seems to have customers who remain loyal. This is a great advantage to the cafe. I think it is great that my grandfather has created such a home-like cafe, including knowing customers’ names. I think the cafe’s biggest threat is the absence of information technology. The entire business is ran from memory and manual entry, which can easily cause unknown mistakes and wrong information. I will make a start by training the employees so everyone is doing their jobs based on guidelines and structure.
It is very important that we get a computer system set up to properly store and manage data and information. It is important that employees are trained to use the new system effectively and efficiently for it to be successful. It is also very important that we work as a team to make this transition smooth and comfortable for everyone, including customers. I want employees to give me input whenever possible. They are the ones who interact with the costumers and deal with the process of serving the customers. Employees may have more of a sense of what needs to be changed or improved.
I also want to hear feedback from customers through comment cards. I also plan to keep customers informed with changes that are occurring or will occur in the future so they can feel like they are apart of the process. We will have a “community wall” where we post all news of the cafe, and customers can post community news from outside the cafe. I also want to continue close relationships with the customers as my grandfather did. It will be very hard to compete will a business such as Starbucks. Their atmosphere is more high class with Jazz music, fancy interior and pricey products.
I want to keep an atmosphere where customers aren’t uncomfortable to hang out, talk, laugh, and socialize. I also want our products to be priced low and affordable. So, if someone wants a cup of coffee, they feel comfortable staying as long as they would like and can afford to have refills. We will also host events such as karaoke nights, cards, raffles, etc. I want to have an environment that families can enjoy and have fun, whereas Starbucks is a place for adults to enjoy coffee, read, and work. Our friendly environment, hosted events, low prices, and close relationships with customers will give us a competitive advantage over Starbucks.