Emerging Female Sporting Goods Market Capstone Project

Pages: 20 (4294 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 6  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Business - Marketing  ·  Written: February 22, 2018

SAMPLE EXCERPT . . .


There were some interesting differences in sports participation levels, including differences in gender levels depending on the geographic region and race, but boys continue to play more multiple sports compared to girls and boys tend to begin their participation in sports earlier than girls (6.8 years versus 7.4 years, respectively) (Woods, 2016). Here again, although the precise reasons for these differences remain the subject to investigation, the prevailing theory concerning these differences involves social and geographic factors. For example, according to Woods (2016):

Youth sports are racially and ethnically diverse and at many ages, boys of color tend to have higher participation rates in sport than Caucasians. However, the picture for girls of color is not encouraging. They seem to be hit by both gender and skin color discrimination, and their participation levels fall significantly below those of Caucasian girls. The reasons for this are a combination of culture, family responsibilities, income level, and living locations. (p. 108)

Likewise, and perhaps not surprisingly, girls were more likely to participate in sports such as dance, volleyball, soccer, cycling, lacrosse, field hockey, ultimate Frisbee, cheerleading, double Dutch, and competitive rope jumping and compared to their male counterparts who remained active in traditional sporting activities such as football, basketball, baseball and soccer (Woods, 2016). At present, the company markets products in these sporting categories as shown in Table 3 below.

Table 3

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Current female-oriented sports products offered by Bill and Fred’s Sporting Goods, Inc.

Product

Description

Comments

Dance

No relevant product offerings

Volleyball

Amateur volleyball sets and volleyballs

These are the only two relevant products offered in this category.

Soccer

No relevant major product offerings.

The company does offer a giant 6-foot novelty soccer ball for team practice and events ($120).

Capstone Project on Emerging Female Sporting Goods Market Assignment

Cycling

No relevant major product offerings.

The company offers two types of bicycle locks only.

Lacrosse

No relevant product offerings

Field hockey

No relevant product offerings

Ultimate Frisbee

No relevant product offerings

Cheerleading

No relevant product offerings

The above listing underscores the current focus on the company’s traditional target market of young North American males, but it is reasonable to suggest that the company is also missing out on some lucrative market niches that it continues to ignore or undervalue. Responding to these recent trends in sports and participation levels in an efficient and effective fashion will therefore require ongoing vigilance concerning opportunities to grow the company’s business in its primary North American market as well as beyond. Such responses, however, are currently constrained by the lingering aftereffects of the company’s merger with its former major competitor, including forging a new organizational culture that combines the best of both enterprises. Taken together, it is clear that these foregoing issues and trends have significant implications for the future of the company and underscore the need for timely leadership today in order to sustain and improve Bill and Fred’s competitive advantage in an increasingly competitive and dynamic marketplace as discussed further below.

4. Evaluation concerning how each of the three areas of responsibility is impacted by the overall challenges

Leadership. Notwithstanding the current CEO proven abilities to guide this multinational enterprise during periods of changes in consumer preferences and economic downturns, it is reasonable to suggest that at some point, Bill will need to permanently retire due to physical infirmities, diminished cognitive abilities, age-related disorders or for personal reasons. In any event, implementing a leadership transition program will require corresponding leadership on the part of the key executives in the company to convince the current CEO of its necessity and urgency as well as the individuals who is tasked with creating the program and the ad hoc committee that will be used to identify potential candidates and formulate an appropriate transition strategy.

Likewise, the current – and future CEO as identified above – will need to be educated concerning the growing popularity of sports-themed video games and recent trends in female participation in group and individual sporting activities as well as the need to develop informed responses and redefine the company’s current (and historic) male-oriented target market.

Administration. Collaboration between the company’s human resource, new product planning and development and marketing divisions will be needed together with their representation on the ad hoc committees. While the composition of the ad hoc committees may change over time as their progress proceeds and new requirements are identified, the original representation on the two ad hoc committees for the two business challenges outlined above will be as follows:

Ad hoc committee #1 (executive search committee): Business problem task: Develop and implement a transition program to groom a replacement for the current CEO.

· Project leader (this will be a member of the board of directors);

· Director, human resources division (assistant project leader and recording secretary);

· Assistant director, human resources division;

· Director, marketing;

· Director, communications; and,

· Expert input from staff and outside counsel as needed.

The designation of a member of the board of directors as the project team leader for this business problem is consistent with the guidance provided by one executive search consultancy that emphasizes, “The selection of a chief executive officer is one of the most important decisions the Board will ever make. Thus, it makes sense to populate the Committee with current board members who are the most attentive to and knowledgeable of the work of the organization” (Who should be represented on the search committee, 2018).

Ad hoc committee #2: Business problem task: Create a marketing division focusing on female-oriented sporting goods and services, including sports-related video games.

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