Nature, Structure, and Types of Products or Services of Apple
Apple Inc. is a leading multinational corporation operating in the electronic and hand devices market. Founded in 1976 by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne as a desktop manufacturing company, the company has registered impressive growth to become one of the top brands in the electronics market (Burke & Graeme, 2016). The company’s leadership structure has made it possible to achieve that rapid growth.
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It has embraced the culture of innovation at every level of the organization. The approach has made it easy for individual employees to explore their talents for the benefit of the firm. The nature of communication within the organization, especially its open-door policy, has made it easy for the top managers to interact with junior employees more often. The company offers a wide range of products. The products include Macintosh, iPhone, iPad, Apple TV, Apple Watch, iOS, macOS, and HomePod (Lusted, 2012). The company is also exploring the field of security, especially the manufacture of metal and explosive detectors that can be used in airports and other sensitive areas.
Key Factors in the Organization’s External Environment That Can Affect Its Success
It is important to appreciate that the external environment has a significant impact on the ability of this company to achieve success. One of the important external factors is government policy. The policies enacted by the government to regulate the operations of companies within this industry may influence Apple Inc’s ability to achieve success. Some of these regulatory policies may be geared toward increasing public expenditure. Such policies often translate into increased sales for the involved companies, making it easy to achieve success. Another important external environmental factor is market competition.
Currently, Apple is facing stiff competition from Samsung and many other companies from North America, Europe, and Asia. When the competition is stiff, firms may be tempted to engage in unhealthy practices such as price wars. Such competition may have a serious negative impact on the firm’s ability to succeed. It reduces the profit margin for the affected companies.
Ways the Primary Stakeholders Can Influence Apple’s Financial Performance
The primary stakeholders at Apple Inc can play a critical role in influencing the financial performance of this company, starting from the shareholders to managers and junior employees. The shareholders are responsible for policymaking, especially the approval of major policies such as the need to explore new markets. They can help in improving the financial performance of this company by engaging industry experts before approving any major decision.
Cooper (2017) says that shareholders have the responsibility of ensuring that they only make approvals after getting the right information from experts. They have to avoid attempts to make decisions based on personal interests or partisan goals. The board of directors also has a critical role to play in influencing the financial performance of Apple Inc. Cooper (2017) says that the board must offer maximum support to the chief executive and top managers to ensure that they work in a friendly environment where their views are respected at all times.
The top management unit of this company, especially the chief executive officer, chief financial officer, and other top departmental heads, has a role to play in improving the financial performance of this firm. The team is responsible for enacting operational policies and ensuring that the vision and mission of the company are realized. They are responsible for ensuring that the entire workforce undertakes various duties that would translate into the financial performance of the organization.
They hire, train, motivate and dismiss employees with the sole purpose of ensuring that this company remains competitive and capable of achieving market goals (Burke & Graeme, 2016). The top managers have the responsibility of creating a culture that promotes integration and innovativeness among employees. The employees need an environment where they can work without feeling intimidated or undervalued. Cooper (2017) notes that employees tend to register better performance if an enabling environment is created in the workplace. It is also worth noting that the top managers are also responsible for motivating the employees through financial and non-financial benefits.
The mid-managers also have a role to play in influencing the financial performance of Apple Inc. As the link between the top managers and junior employees, the mid-managers are responsible for ensuring that policies are translated into actual actions. They have to work very closely with both the top managers and junior employees to ensure that operational activities are aligned with the company’s vision. They must also provide a guide to the junior employees, especially when it is apparent that change is necessary (Burke & Graeme, 2016).
Finally, the junior employees also have a critical role to play in boosting the financial performance of the company. As Cooper (2017) says, junior employees are the wheels of any organization through which goals can be achieved. Their activities such as selling company products, coming up with new ideas for product improvement, and engaging in the production processes all help in improving the firm’s financial performance. Their commitment to assigned tasks and the vision of the firm defines the ability of the company to achieve economic success.
Controversial Corporate Social Responsibility Concern Associated With Apple
Apple Inc has registered impressive growth over the past decade, and as a way of giving back to society, it highly values corporate social responsibility in the United States and other parts of the world. According to Cooper (2017), the company has sponsored various environmental protection programs over the recent past. However, Cooper (2017) a section of the environmental conservation groups, has criticized its commitment towards protecting the environment given the increasingly negative impact of its activities on the environment.
According to Katsioloudes and Abouhanian (2017), in the financial year ending in December 2014, the activities of the company emitted over 34.2 million metric tons of greenhouse gases. Although the firm has committed huge sums of money to help protect the environment against the consequences of global warming, its activities have played a major role in negatively affecting the environment. In the United States, the company has minimal production activities and its operations are in line with the set greenhouse gas emission limits.
However, the same is not the case in China. A section of the company’s critics has claimed that the decision to move its production plant to China was not only motivated by the low production costs in that country but also relaxed laws regarding the regulation of emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. It means that on one hand, Apple Inc is informing the public that it is keen on protecting the environment while on the other hand; it is actively involved in activities, which are a threat to the same environment.
Burke, R., & Graeme, M. (2016). Corporate reputation: Managing opportunities and threats. London, UK: Taylor & Francis Group.
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Cooper, S. (2017). Corporate social performance: A stakeholder approach. New York, NY: Routledge.
Katsioloudes, M., & Abouhanian, A. (2017). The strategic planning process: Understanding strategy in global markets. New York, NY: Routledge.
Lusted, M. A. (2012). Apple: The Company and its Visionary Founder, Steve Jobs. Minneapolis, MN: ABDO Digital.