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In this paper, the business network of Peet’s Café will be analyzed. Peet’s is a local café that offers coffee, desserts, and snacks for its customers, housed inside a facility capacity of 100. In addition, the customers can also avail themselves of wireless internet facilities and host poetry and art events/galleries.
The Business Network
Peet’s business network comprises suppliers, customers, and internal employees. The suppliers are local bakeries, coffee vendors, and other food items. In addition, there is the Internet service provider as well. The internal management consists of the café manager, his assistant manager, serving staff and sales reps, chefs, and helpers. Although simple, the network still requires attention and communication needs.
To promote interest in the betterment and improvement of the system, one strategy is to get the entire network links involved in forming the strategy and improving the network itself. The suppliers, employees, and even customers need to be involved, and their suggestions/opinions must be considered. It must be communicated to them that with an efficient network, the business will benefit, but each of them individually will be in a better and more profitable position. The goals and visions of the improved network need to be communicated to the network members regularly and effectively.
There can be different ways to do this. Weekly, monthly and quarterly meetings need to be held between all employees, management, and the suppliers to assess and evaluate their performance. All members can sit and discuss their performance figures and activities since the last meeting and can address possible issues, areas of consideration, new ideas, weaknesses, anything at all. Apart from evaluation, each session can have a themed discussion. For example, one of the meeting themes could be efficient routes for suppliers, quality of ingredients, seating inside the café, and location ambiance. This would allow an in-depth, focused discussion on a particular topic with all aspects considered. Topics and themes should be settled beforehand so that the participants can prepare material for effective communication of their ideas like slideshow presentations, charts, outlines, discussion cards, and written material. The people who must communicate the policies and ideas to others in the network must have proper and efficient communication skills with command over computer and internet applications, presentation makers, and writing skills.
The practices outlined above will allow the communication of objectives, ideas, policies, and procedures to be conveyed verbally and effectively. Apart from this, written and printed memos and notices can be posted on notice boards or emailed to partners and concerned parties over the internet. It is essential to have complete contact details of each supplier and partner and be well in touch with each of them.
Feedback is critical to understanding whether the communication is effective along with the network or not. The idea is to get the message across and ensure it is being acted upon and used. Just communicating is not enough. Thus, feedback would not mean determining whether the message was displayed or sent across. It would mean to find out whether or not that performance has been improved as a result of the communication or not. Feedback will then be measured and observed by comparing current performance numbers such as sales, delays, and errors with past data. Customer feedback will be essential to monitor any changes or improvements in the company’s image/performance.
A business network is strong and effective only when its links are strong and well in touch with the rest of the links. To ensure this, effective communication and continuous improvement are the keys.
Cole, K. (2005). Management Theory and Practice. Third Edition. Pearson-Prentice Hall.
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