Businesses take many different forms, and understanding the different faces of businesses and their ownership can help us understand the businesses that make up our community. In Southern California, we pride ourselves on being open to entrepreneurial businesses and new ideas, and founding communities that are welcoming to new businesses with different approaches to the traditional business model. In this article, two local businesses will be examined; they are Dirty Dogs, which proclaims itself to be the “earth-friendly pet product store and spa,” and Jimbo’s, which is a local health food grocery store (“Dirty Dogs: Earth Friendly Pet Product Store & Spa,” “Jimbo’sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”). These businesses are very successful and well-respected in the community, and this article will examine the main reasons why these businesses have achieved the success that they enjoy today.
Dirty Dogs is a pet store and spa that exists in two locations in Southern California. The Dirty Dogs website describes the experience: “Dirty Dogs is a one-stop-shop for all your pets’ needs. We provide healthy nutritional foods, cage-free grooming, self-serve washing facilities, and many accessory products. At Dirty Dogs, we have based our company values on what’s best for your four-legged friends” (“Dirty Dogs: Earth Friendly Pet Product Store & Spa”). The store is owned and run by a single family, with a partnership existing between the family members old enough to be partners in the business (“Dirty Dogs: Earth Friendly Pet Product Store & Spa”). This family controls the day-to-day work in the business, but also controls the financing and structural supports of the business. At the Dirty Dogs business, an individual can purchase all kinds of excellent products that are healthy and safe for his or her dog or cat. In addition, the pet owner can schedule a grooming appointment with the groomers at the store, or even wash their pet themselves in the special bathtubs that exist within the store. Essentially, Dirty Dogs has positioned itself as a one-stop-shop for pet owners that have a tendency to spoil their dogs, cats, or other pets.
Jimbo’s Naturally! (henceforth “Jimbo’s”), on the other hand, is a different kind of business. Where Dirty Dogs sells products and services, Jimbo’s sells products-- mainly health food and related health products (“Jimbo'sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”). Jimbo’s sells both groceries and fresh foods, and attempts to cater to the portion of the market that is focused on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Founded in Southern California, Jimbo’s is owned and run by a sole proprietor; the titular “Jimbo” himself (“Jimbo'sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”). According to the Jimbo’s website, Jimbo’s is focused on giving back to the community: “Jimbo is a staunch supporter of the local school system and he takes the time to coach his sons’ sports teams It is also evident in the Jimbo’s ‘It’s in the Bag’ Recycling Program and Kids Club Program” (“Jimbo'sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”). This is a business that is very focused on giving back to the community that it is a part of.
Both Dirty Dogs and Jimbo’s serve a relatively upscale clientele. They are both situated in upper-middle-class suburban areas, and focus on providing upscale goods and services to individuals with disposable income. The stakeholders of the organizations are the owner or owners, the employees, the suppliers, and the clientele of the businesses. The owners of these businesses, as they are participating in the community, seem to be invested in making the communities that their businesses are in better. For instance, Dirty Dogs is currently in the process of remodeling the local dog park; Jimbo’s funds local sports teams (“Dirty Dogs: Earth Friendly Pet Product Store & Spa,” “Jimbo’sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”).
Customers of these businesses want two things from the businesses: they want good deals and excellent service. For Dirty Dogs, this means excellent care for their pets for the money that they are spending, and for Jimbo’s this means good deals on healthy foods. In addition, customers as stakeholders in the business want to be certain that the business is providing them with good service for their money. Owners of each business desire to make a profit, while the suppliers similarly want to make a profit from selling their goods to the businesses. Employees as stakeholders, on the other hand, require a living wage and a stable, safe business environment to be happy and healthy in the company (Freeman, Reed and Reed).
In this section, discussion with center around how businesses are organized and what the structures of Dirty Dogs and Jimbo’s look like. In addition, the discussion will take into account the style of the organization, their strategic planning, the influencing factors and the different aims necessary for fulfilling these purposes within the organizations.
Dirty Dogs is a family owned and operated business. This organization is made up of a family unit, all of whom are responsible for overseeing a different portion of the business. This model of business may not be successful for all businesses, as families are notoriously bad at working with each other, but as it is, the Btesh family (the family that owns the business) has separated the business into distinct sections for each family member to be responsible for (“Dirty Dogs: Earth Friendly Pet Product Store & Spa”). According to the information available, one family member is responsible for oversight of the business; he is the general manager at both locations. Another family member is a local real estate mogul, and has bankrolled the entire project, while still another orders supplies and does research on the best products available for pets (“Dirty Dogs: Earth Friendly Pet Product Store & Spa”).
Jimbo’s, on the other hand, is a much larger operation. While the titular “Jimbo” still owns the name and the copyright for the grocery chain, he is no longer in charge of the many different locations of the store (“Jimbo’sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”). Today, Jimbo’s is a sole proprietorship, with one store that has been sold to a different owner (“Jimbo’sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”). According to the company description, Jimbo’s is focused on providing a good working environment for its employees, offering them an open forum to communicate to upper-level management about any concerns they have regarding the state of the business, their employment, and the business’ actions in the community (“Jimbo’sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”).
Strategic planning generally has a few key components: first, the company must identify the values that it maintains as important. For Dirty Dogs, the values that are important revolve around treating pets humanely and providing a comfortable, safe space for dogs and cats to be groomed (“Dirty Dogs: Earth Friendly Pet Product Store & Spa”). In addition, Dirty Dogs is focused on providing good care and excellent products for pets. Jimbo’s, on the other hand, is focused on providing healthy foods and other health-related products to the community; in addition, Jimbo’s is focused on helping build a better, more healthy community overall (“Jimbo’sNaturally: Natural Foods Grocer”). The mission of both of these businesses, the second important characteristic of strategic planning, is to carry out these values in such a way that provides both businesses with a profit and general betterment for the community within which they are situated.
Finally, the companies had to design and implement a plan insofar as these mission statements and values were concerned. For both companies, the strategy was different, although similar in some key ways. Dirty Dogs, in its attempt to find a niche market within an upscale suburb, focused on the attention that people pay their pets; they developed a business plan that focused on their ability to tap into the market of people who are very attached to their pets, and willing to pay extra to ensure that their pets are well-cared-for. Jimbo’s, alternatively, has a very community-oriented system of business. Structurally, Jimbo’s is similar to other small businesses and grocery chains, but has carved out a niche for itself in the health foods market. In addition, Jimbo’s has integrated well into the community, supporting local schools and local sports teams in the hope of promoting a healthy lifestyle within the community itself.
Each of these businesses carefully implemented a strategic plan when designing and starting their business, and each has filled the niche that was left in the market nicely. Jimbo’s has successfully grown into a large, well-established grocery chain, while Dirty Dogs remains a more boutique-style business with two family owned and operated stores.
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