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Research paper example essay prompt: Ford Motor Company - 1836 words

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Ford Motor Company HISTORY Henry Ford was an engineer from Detroit, Michigan who had an idea. By 1902, Ford had attempted several times to produce a gas powered vehicle, but with little capital, he realized that his attempts were futile. Ford approached a man by the name of Alexander T. Malcomson about the possibility of manufacturing an automobile. Malcomson, a friend of the family and wealthy coal merchant was reluctant at first but finally agreed with Ford, and decided to assit Ford financially with his endeavor. With Malcomsons investment and Ford's engineering skills a partnership was formed and in mid June of 1903, papers of incorporation for the Ford Motor Company were filed in Dearborn, Michigan.

Despite nearing bankruptcy on a few occasions, the company finally took off with the launch of their first car- the Model A, and by 1920 approximately 60% of all automobiles on the road were Ford. Today Ford is the largest truck maker and the number two manufacturer of cars in North America, producing an average of eight cars or trucks per minute. The Ford Motor Company employs 371 702 people at over 2400 branches in 33 countries and sells automobiles in over 200 markets. VISION STATEMENT Our vision is to be the world's leading automotive company, from the viewpoint of our customers, shareholders and employees. Consumer focus, strong global brands, leading quality and values, nimble leadership and teamwork, corporate citizenship, and a passion for growth are the key elements of Ford's Vision and Strategy Pyramid (see appendix) of becoming the world's leading consumer based company that provides automotive products and services.

This pyramid provides a summary of the ways that Ford is upholding it's commitment to success. The foundation of this pyramid, and the root of Ford's vision statement is the consumer. It is this consumer based focus the has been the key to Ford's transformation, growth and success over the years. FORD'S COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGES Today's automotive industry in very competitive. Ford has had to find ways to keep ahead of the following major companies: BANC ONE, Bank America, BMW, Budget Group, Chrysler, Daimler-Benz, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Isuzu, Mack Trucks, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Peugeot, Saab, Suzuki, Toyota, Volkswagen and many others.

Ford has developed a number of strategies to do so. The following is a brief description of a few of the ways Ford keeps ahead of the game. The company also spends millions of dollars each year advertising its products to the public. They do this by way of television commercials, newspaper ads, and radio announcements. (See appendix) GLOBAL BRANDS Trust our company, love our brands and delight in our services.

This is the theme of Ford's global brand strategy. Ford's approach to brand marketing is that of six distinctive vehicle brands and four distinctive service brands. Among these vehicle brands are Mercury, Lincoln, Ford, Jaguar, Aston Martin, Mazda, and soon Volvo. With several different brands under the name Ford a number of products with an overwhelming set of characteristics has been developed. These strong brand names, along with unique models within each brand assist Ford to build long-term, sustainable links to customers throughout the world.

(For a listing of Ford models, see appendix.) People automatically associate certain nameplates to Ford, such as the Mustang, Thunderbird, and the ever popular Taurus. The brand characteristic of a Ford truck is Built Ford Tough, while the characteristics of a sport utility vehicle is ,go anywhere, do anything, practical adventure. The Jaguar XJR is another example of a unique brand of Ford. There are no others like it on the market today. The XJR is targeted at those customers who are looking for that extravagant muscle car.

All of these sub-brands share the same global promise of the Ford Motor Company. Strong brand images also help to establish lasting identities for products and services. This proves to drastically cut marketing costs, as well as create consumer loyalty. Creating this loyalty keeps satisfied customers coming back. Ford's distinctive service brands include Ford Credit, Quality Care, Hertz, and Visteon.

These trustmark qualities are directly associated with the Ford Motor Company and they help consumers identify Ford as a company with which they can feel comfortable doing business. These service brand images help keep customers in the Ford family as they seek financing or leasing, vehicle care, and short-term vehicle rentals. CONSUMER SATISFACTION Ford is dedicated in developing Ford enthusiasts. Enthusiasts are those people who are so in love with Ford's products and services that they will passionately recommend them to friends. Ford's family of enthusiasts has been built through superior satisfaction and loyalty. By gaining satisfaction of their customers through the entire life cycle of the vehicle, rather than dismissing the customer as soon as the car has left the lot, Ford creates an overall unforgettable experience. Total customer satisfaction covers everything, from the entire ownership experience, sales and service.

When people have happy experiences, repeat purchases will occur and the enthusiasts likelihood to recommend Ford products, services and dealers to friends and family will increase. Ford's internal measures indicate that customer satisfaction improved roughly 3% in1997. The advantages of Ford's superior satisfaction and loyalty has best been summed up by Bob Rewy, Group Vice President, Marketing, Sales and Service. He said that You can buy time on the Super Bowl and your name on billboards, but I have yet to see a single medium which advertises and markets as well as a satisfied customer. If you do things right and treat people right, they'll not only stick with you - - they'll become missionaries for you, spreading the word far and wide and bringing new consumers to your doorstep. BEST TOTAL VALUE Delivering great value to it's customers is Ford's passion.

All efforts are aimed at exceeding customer expectations in the fields of environment, safety, valuing the community and becoming a global leader. These are some of the best ways to achieve customer satisfaction and loyalty. By maintaining these qualities, as well as providing effective services, finances, and repairs it will affect the overall ownership experience. This directly affects the amount that the consumer will invest in a repeat purchase. It also affects the residual value.

(The value of the vehicle when the owner sells it or trades it in.) By insuring these trends, the resale of the vehicle remains high, an important consideration to the customer before the purchase of a new vehicle. Every single day, we get smarter about how we care for the safety of our customers, and the well-being of our environment. And every single day, we take steps to improve. It's a never ending process, but it is one that we must pursue if we are to earn consumer's trust. (Helen Petrauskas, Vice President, Environmental and Safety Engineering.) ENVIRONMENT Ford plans to lead in breakthrough products that exceed their customers needs.

Their challenge is to find efficient and effective ways to make cleaner, more environmentally friendly vehicles. All of Ford's 1999-model sport utility vehicles will be labeled as low-emission automobiles. So far, Ford is the leader in alternative fuels, manufacturing more products then any other company. They have completed a P2000 research vehicle, (A light weight, ultra efficient family size sedan) that achieves 63 miles per gallon. They are also certifying all manufacturing plants under the ISO 14001 Act.

(The international environment management system standard. SAFETY Ford earned more top safety ratings than all other manufacturers combined in 1997. Six of Ford's vehicles received the top five star rating for both driver and passenger side impacts. Ford is also the leader in dual air-bag protection. Air-bags play an important role in occupant safety, however some studies have shown them to be the cause of death in children riding in the front seat. For this reason, Ford was the first to offer the option to enable the owner to deactivate the air-bags.

The Checker Cab Company in Atlanta found one of Ford's five-star rated vehicle, the Ford Crown Victoria a great addition to their fleet. Today nearly half of all the cabs in the company's line-up are that of the Ford Crown Victoria. They know that business will increase by offering a Ford safe drive. VALUING THE COMMUNITY Ford strives on making the world a better place. The company has been involved in many charities and community events. Canadian Ford dealerships served as collection points for blankets and clothing to assist victims of the floods in Manitoba.

They also assisted by providing trucks and vans to transport people and equipment during the crisis. Ford also pledged $13.4 Million to the 1997 United Way Community Services campaign in Michigan. This is the single largest pledge to any local United Way in the U.S. Giving back to the community is ingrained in Ford's employees, their value system and their heritage. This is the way of life at Ford, which dates back to the founding of Ford Motors Co. The human side of business must be elevated to a position of equal importance with the material side (Henry Ford.) QUALITY At Ford quality is job one.

Ford views each and every one of it's product as significant engineering milestones and verifies that each product meets the customer needs. Ford's efforts to continuously improve quality help the company earn customer satisfaction. Ford's Atlanta Assembly Plant received the 1997 J.D. Power and Associates Platinum Award for initial quality. (The highest ranking in the world for facilities producing vehicles for the North American market.) All efforts made by the company are aimed at exceeding customer expectations.

Through these efforts, it is in Ford's best interest to reach potential customers and to keep them. Quality and satisfaction are two of the major roles Ford takes to ensure competitiveness. FOR NOW. FOREVER Ford's successes include having the best selling vehicle in the U.S. - the F-series pickup- for the 16th year in a row, and four of the best selling vehicles in 1997.

Aston Martin recorded a 7% increase and Jaguar also recorded its highest sports car sales in the company's 75-year history. By maintaining these qualities and trends, Ford Motor Company continues to improve, transform and grow keeping ahead of today's vehicle market. Ford continues to research public trends and to expand and improve accordingly. An excellent example of how Ford performed a customer needs analysis and manufactured an automobile following all of today's trends, is the Ford Focus. (See appendix with regards to the comparison of the Ford Focus and the Honda Civic.) Ford's research led them to expect that men will be nearly a half-inch taller and women a quarter-inch taller in 2000 than they were in 1990. Following these guidelines, they provided extra roominess and comfort in the Focus that future customers require.

Buying a small car doesn't have to mean making compromises in comfort, roominess, appearance, driving character, safety or value. Focus combines these elements so there are no compromises. (Jim O'Connor, Ford Vice President and Ford Division President.) The Ford Motor Company will continue to be one of the leading car and truck manufactures in the world by enforcing these trends. FOR NOW. FOREVER.

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Research paper topics, free essay prompts, sample research papers on Ford Motor Company