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Strategic Management and Leadership

Essay by   •  August 7, 2013  •  Case Study  •  4,322 Words (18 Pages)  •  1,456 Views

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The Just Us! Co-op set out in 1995 to become Canada's first Fair Trade coffee roaster. It was a small, but bold experiment to show that the coffee business, and all businesses, could be done differently, putting "People and the Planet before Profits"™ locally and globally. (The Canadian CED Network, 2009).

This vision has been realised and is taking over Nova Scotia were the business is based. One of the mediums that pull in the revenues, is the just us cafes'.

The company is at the point of taking major decisions and making major changes, like decisions on expansion and other marketing decision, having recently employed a new marketing manager. To help her with her decision, we will be writing a report on the Business so far.


In order to profitably satisfy customer needs, the firm must first understand its external and internal environment. This will include an understanding of the customer, the market environment and the firm's own capabilities. (Matt Winn, 2013) Also, the firm will need to study the current trends & dynamics of the environment in which it operates. The process of doing this is what is referred to as a situation analysis. One of the most effective frame works for performing a situation analysis is the 5C's Analysis frame work.

The 5C'S analysis is an environmental scan on five key areas; especially applicable to marketing decisions. It covers the internal (Micro environment) and the external (Macro environment) situation. (Matt Winn, 2013).

In this part of the report, we will use the 5C'S analytical framework to get an in-depth look at the internal and external environment of the Just us! Brand.

The five areas of analysis are;

* C- The company

* C - The Customers

* C - The Collaborators

* C - The Competitors

* C- The Climate/Context

Let's study each "C" a bit more:


The need for the managers to understand a company in its entirety cannot be over stated as this is the foundation for its success.

Therefore, when a company carries out a situation analysis, its first task is to look inward. Just Us! is Canada's first certified fair trade coffee roaster. It is also one of Canada's most successful worker owned business, with strong ethical beliefs. Having 12 years of experience in the fair trade market, Just Us! is set to meet and even exceed the needs of its customers.

The strength of a business is in its offerings, whether it be products, services, or even both. The just of range of products can do just that. Just Us! offers certified organic and fairly traded products like coffee, tea, chocolate and sugar.

Just Us! also has its own bakery specialising in local organic products which supplies its cafes with baked goods.

Just Us! has carved a niche for itself in the business as they have positioned their business to be both wholesalers, supplying to supermarkets and other distributors and also retailing via their cafes.

The cafes system also gives them the opportunity to tell of fair trade story in a unique way that wouldn't be possible otherwise

SWOT ANALYSIS: SWOT Analysis is a useful technique for understanding your Strengths and Weaknesses, and for identifying both the Opportunities open to you and the Threats you face. (Mind Tools Ltd., 2013)

Strength: The advantage of early entry and the experience, gives just us an edge this business. The company also has a very good positive image in the market having won several awards like "the prestigious president entrepreneurial award" from Acadia university, there was also "the Annual human right award" by the Nova Scotia human right commission .Another major area of strength, is the commitment that is evident from staff at Just Us! being a worker owned company.

Weakness: A major weakness is in the area of distribution. Its dependence on major supermarkets as the major distributors of its products, as these supermarkets also offered organic and trade private-label product lines.

Opportunities: The fair trade market being so young in Canada, makes it a good time to consolidate its gains and venture into other cities like Ontario as opportunities abound in such cities and even abroad.

Another opportunity, Just Us should utilise is the growth of the organic market, by introducing more organic foods into its product range so as to ensure a wider customer base.

Threats: Although the threat of new entrants and strong competition is very present, the fair trade market is still largely untapped and just as will do just fine if it maintains its current position in the market.

The broad goals set out for the company in the future, includes expanding to other Canadian cities and the conclusion of other organic products in its product line.


The Canadian fair trade market is steadily growing as customers get more knowledge about fair trade.

The market is still greatly untapped and has great growth potential as it is still young in Canada compared to the US and Europe.

The major consumers of fair trade products are broadly; the ethical consumer for whom fair trade is a cause and they patronise fair trade products with the desire to contribute their quota to fair trade.

Then there are the regular consumers who on the other hand, just consume what coffee the feel best about.

However, ever the ethical consumers are basically two types. The ethically active consumer, and the ethically passive consumer.

Typically, the ethically active consumers are young and educated and are passionate about and strongly believe in ethical values. They are more likely to talk about this passion and convince a friend.

The ethically passive consumer however, consumes ethical products for a whole different reason; because it is healthy for them to consume. They may be interested in the source but not for ethical reasons like the ethically active consumer.

In advertising, the company should also target the ethically passive consumer who are mostly married females in their 40's and are very likely to talk about their preferred brand.

The market



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