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An Issue vs. a Problem: the Kudler Fine Foods Store

In: Business and Management

Submitted By Alondra134
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An Issue vs. A Problem: The Kudler Fine Foods Store
Kudler Fine Foods is a local upscale specialty food store with three locations (La Jolla, Del Mar and Encinita) located in fashionable shopping centers in the San Diego metropolitan area. The stores are stocked with the very best domestic and imported foodstuffs and divided into different departments (Kudler Intranet). It was founded by Kathy Kudler, a Marketing VP of a large contractor at the time, in 1998. As many small businesses, the operation of such an enterprise is full of day to day issues and problems that need to be resolved properly and efficiently in order to keep the operation going.
An issue is defined as “a topic of interest or discussion, an important subject requiring a decision” while a problem is defined as “something or someone that is difficult to deal with” (Collins Essential English Dictionary, 2nd Edition, 2006). As a small and growing business, Kudler Fine Foods has intrinsic issues that, if left unattended, can turn into problems at any given time.
By evaluating the Weaknesses section of the 2003 Strategic Plan of Kudler Fine Foods SWOT (Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats) analysis, a set of issues that need to be discussed can be defined. Due to the nature of the business, a one-stop place that offers the best domestic and imported food stuff, Kudler Fine Foods deals with perishable food that needs to be rotated out of the inventory (12%) on a 2 or 3 day basis in order to ensure the customer the freshest food possible. The key here is to find a way to track the movement of each of this perishable food throughout the year to be able to anticipate the amount of each food that needs to be produced or ordered to minimize that 12% of rotated out of the inventory items.
Kudler Fine Foods also has a high pay-roll cost related to specialty positions (butcher, baker, wine steward, etc.). It also has difficulties finding a qualified individual when someone quits or a new store is opened. This highlight the lack of a cross training program that will allow Kudler Fine Foods to have backups for each of the specialty positions to keep the operation uninterrupted in the case of an opening or if someone quits while finding a substitute.
The operation of the Del Mar store is not going as expected since the town is too small to support the store. This issue has already been evaluated by Kudler Fine Foods and plan has been delineated. A fourth store will be opened at Carlsbad and will absorb the Del Mar operations when the local rental agreement ends.
Probably the biggest issue the Kudler Fine Foods has is that Kathy Kudler is the person in charge of the major business issues, such as finance, purchasing and inventory tracking, among others. This situation places the company in a very fragile position. If Kathy is unable to be present at the stores, due to a sickness, disability or just because she is on vacation, no one is capable of performing her duties and/or fulfilling her responsibilities, which will jeopardize the business. This issue should be addressed as soon as possible. Kudler Fine Foods is already planning to install an electronic system that will allow them to track the ordering of items and are evaluating the possibility of hiring someone to help with the purchasing and the inventory.
Issues are part of the daily operations of any given business, regardless of its size. The important thing to do is to acknowledge, evaluate and discuss them, establish a plan to correct them and take control over them to avoid bigger problems that can impact the overall operation of the business. References
Collins Essential English Dictionary, 2nd Edition 2006©, Issue Definition, HarperCollins Publishers 2004, 2006. Retrieved 06/18/09, from: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/issue Collins Essential English Dictionary, 2nd Edition 2006©, Problem Definition, HarperCollins Publishers 2004, 2006. Retrieved 06/18/09, from: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/problem University of Phoenix – Kudler Internet/Intranet Portal. Kudler Fine Foods 2003 Strategic Plan. Retrieved 06/18/2009, from: https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/secure/aapd/cist/vop/business/kudler/Admin/StrategicPlan2003.pdf
University of Phoenix. (Ed.). (2008). Understanding Business (University of Phoenix Custom Edition e-text). The McGraw-Hill Companies. Retrieved 06/17/09, from University of Phoenix, Resource, MGT521 – eBook Collection Web site: https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/content/eBookLibrary2/content/ereader.aspx?assetmetaid=f0da46d3-b1b7-4d10-8806-b30519d026aa&assetdataid=7e697586-4333-4d6a-a0c9-c00d2fa1b30a

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