Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Implementing New Strategy Without Disrupting Organization - 550 Words

Implementing New Strategy Without Disrupting your Organization (Essay Sample) Content: Implementing new strategy without disrupting your organizationNameInstitution of AffiliationDue to the fast changing business dynamics, business organizations are being forced to revamp their corporate strategies in efforts to remain relevant and viable in the competitive globalized marketplaces. Companies over time have tried unlocking their organizationà ¢Ã¢â€š ¬s corporate strategies through decentralization by geographic area or product category, centralization by function or through matrix structure that combines both or networked organizations, but none of this seems to work efficiently. Restructuring an organization is usually expensive, and new models in most cases come with organizational problems since it takes a lot of time for employees to familiarize themselves with new models, and a lot of knowledge is wasted in the change process.(Kaplan Norton, 2006), argue that due to challenges and the cost involved in finding corporate value through structural cha nge, structural change is not the best method in realizing the corporate value in organizations. According to them, it is more practical to implement an organizational strategy that will function without major issues and create a customized strategic plans to link the structure to the model. According to (Kaplan Norton, 2006), the best solution to connect strategy to the structure is having a management system aligned with the Balanced Scorecard framework. Managers will be better positioned to drive optimum performance in various units, map strategies in defining and communicating the organizationà ¢Ã¢â€š ¬s value proposition in their respective units as well as creating ways to monitor effectiveness strategies in the various implementation stages (Kaplan Norton, 2006). A system based on balanced scorecard equips organizations with a template and a clear framework to assemble and communicate information about creating value in the organization. Kaplan and Norton describe how Roya l Canadian Mounted Police and DuPont used strategy maps aligned around strategic themes and scorecards to build tremendous value from their personnel and assets. These organizations did not subject themselves to massive extra costs and the possibility of enduring various changes that would only replace the preexisting structural model with another rigid model that would eventually result in even more challenges.The four perspectivesKaplan and Norton scorecard framework is a measure of four perspectives that are vital sources of value creation. These four perspective includes. * Customer perspectiveThey insist on the need for organizations to enhance relationships with various business units to enable the offer improved customer services regarding improvement quality, greater convenience as well as lower prices as well as providing specialized customer services than rival firms cannot match in the marketplace. Customers being vital shareholders in organizations, new strategies should have a positive impact on customer experiences as well as satisfaction (Kaplan Norton, 2006). * Financial perspective.They argue that value can by developing financial synergies that ensure effective systems for corporate governance, resource allocation, and monitoring, for incorporating new business models as well as interacting with external stakeholders such as capital providers, government, and suppliers. Such financial synergies ensure savings by eliminating wastage (Williams, 2010). * Process perspectiveProcess perspective scoreboard provides that strategic value maps are created to streamline critical processes ...

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Critical Analysis of Night and Left to Tell - 1790 Words

Critical Analysis of Left to Tell and Night Andrew Hayes 5/5/09 SOC 111- Social Problems Prof. John Sterlacci While reading the books, Left to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza, and Night by Elie Wiesel, the similarity in person was very prominent. Noticing how closely related these two authors were in their time of struggle and how they conquered their struggles to become survivors. Family, personality, religion, and lifestyle all played separate parts in the story which were told. Though these authors share many similarities, there are still a few ways they differ in the events they were exposed to. Family plays a role in nearly everyone’s life. For Immaculee, family was the most treasured thing she had. She had a strong connection with†¦show more content†¦She stood up to her family and gave them a strong person they could believe and rely on; she organized her family back into their normal actions. Her father then started to rally the Tutsi people who gathered for his guidance to fight against the people who attacked them, whether it is the government or the Interahamwe, which was a Hutu militia. When discussing the personality of Elie, the subject is not as strong as an individual but is not a negative aura. As said before, he spent a lot of time with his father therefore he had his father to guide him and be his support. He did however, suffer from a loss of a family member, his father, right before him and remained to stay strong enough to be released from the holocaust to return to two of his surviving sisters. There was a point in the story where Elie and his father were sent to a line for the crematory, then moved into a different building where they were stripped and barricaded. This may have shaded his personality from interfering with his surroundings due to the confusion of what was happening and also the sure fear in everyone surrounding him. Religion was one of the bigger subjects in both of these stories. Immaculee held onto her faith as a Christian very closely. As a matter of fact it was a Pastor by the name of Pastor Murinzi who she fled to during the time when her father leading Tutsi men to fight against the HutuShow MoreRelatedEssay on Insanity: The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe1165 Words   |  5 Pages â€Å"The Tell-Tale Heart† by Edgar Allan Poe is a first-person narrative short story that showcases an enigmatic and veiled narrator. The storyteller makes us believe that he is in full control of his mind yet he is experiencing a disease that causes him over sensitivity of the senses. As we go through the story, we can find his fascination in proving his sanity. The narrator lives with an old man, who has a clouded, pale blue, vulture-like eye that makes him so helpless that he kills the old man. HeRead MorePh Business Skill Management Tool Beam Scenario Ideas1462 Words   |  6 PagesPH Business Skill Management Tool Beam Scenario Ideas Summary Level of Development Problem Solving Strategic Thinking Root Cause Analysis Plan, Do, Study, Act Critical factors for success Identifying and Mitigating risks Health and Well-Being for All, Focus: Asthma As a county public health official you have a goal to Improve the county’s profile on RWJF’s County Health Rankings. In order to achieve this you are trying to outline a plan to address the high rates of childhood asthma in the communityRead MoreEssay about â€Å"The Tell-Tale Heart† 1448 Words   |  6 Pagesâ€Å"The Tell-Tale Heart† by Edgar Allan Poe is a first-person narrative short story that features a disguised-cum-mysterious narrator. The narrator does not reveal any interest while proving his innocence regarding the murder of the old man. Moreover, he makes us believe that he is in full control of his mind but yet suffering from a disease that causes him over acuteness of the senses. As we go through the story, we can find his obsession in proving his sanity. The narrator lives with an old man, whoRead MoreRembrandt van Rijn Essay1024 Words   |  5 Pagessaw to it th at Rembrandt had an excellent education. Rembrandt began attending the University of Leiden, but really wanted to study art. Eventually he left school to become an apprentice to the artist Jacob van Swanenburgh. He also was a student of the painter Pieter Lastman. Company Frans Banning Cocq and Willem van Ruytenburch , known as the Night Watch is a Rembrandt painting which dates from 1642. It is a company of the bourgeois militia Musketeers Amsterdam , Frans Banning Cocq controlled , leavingRead MoreOf Mice and Men by John Steinbeck973 Words   |  4 Pagesworkers don’t have anyone there for them. Unlike other workers, George and Lennie have another way to keep their distance from the loneliness - because they have each other. b. Analysis- This quotation signifies the theme that friendship is not only a bond between two people but their friendship is necessary and critical to the survival of working on the ranch because ranch workers are the â€Å"loneliest guys† since there is no one for them to talk to or depend on except for themselves and don’t haveRead MoreSummary And Critical Analysis Of Chaucer s The Miller s Tale923 Words   |  4 PagesSummary and Critical Analysis of Chaucer’s â€Å"The Miller’s Tale† Geoffrey Chaucer starts â€Å"The Miller’s Tale† out with an intriguing prologue. In this prologue, the Miller is found to be drunk due to his behavior towards the Reeve, and his judgment towards â€Å"The Knight’s Tale.† The Reeve and Miller have never seen eye to eye; they never have and never will. With this being said, the Miller tells a tale of a gullible carpenter whose wife cheats on him with an intelligent lodger. Since the Reeve is a carpenterRead MoreCritical Thinking Assignment 2 Essay855 Words   |  4 PagesMilissa Tift Wednesday Night September 10, 2012 Professor Calabrese Assignment #2 Critical Thinking Critical Thinking – Assignment #2 In any story there are two types of language, figurative and literal. Language is, of course a necessary factor of any story. Without Language, an author could not tell the story. The author usually uses a combination of these two languages. Together, these languages characterize the author’s style. Literal language means exactly whatRead MoreReview Of Yann Martel s Life Of Pi Essay1337 Words   |  6 PagesEssay Editing Services Literature Essays College Application Essays Textbook Answers Writing Help LOG IN HomeStudy GuidesLife of PiLife of Pi Summary Life of Pi Study Guide Life of Pi by Yann Martel Buy Study Guide Life of Pi Summary Life of Pi tells the fantastical story of Pi Patel, a sixteen-year-old South Indian boy who survives at sea with a tiger for 227 days. Pi, born Piscine Molitor Patel, grows up in the South Indian city of Pondicherry, where his father runs the zoo. A precocious andRead MoreA Critical Analysis Of Ernest Hemingway s 900 Words   |  4 PagesA Critical Analysis of Ernest Hemingway’s â€Å"In Another Country† In the short story, â€Å"In Another Country† Ernest Hemingway writes about wounded soldiers who are trying to recuperate and come to terms with their losses as they face everyday struggles within themselves. During World War I, an American who is sought to be a man named Nick Adams, according to critique Mazzeno, is joined together with other soldiers much alike him and meets with them every afternoon in the hospital of Milan, Italy to beRead MoreSlave revolt comparrison of La Amistad and Benito Cereno1564 Words   |  7 Pagesupon early capture these captives were at their strongest. While the conditions were horrible from the start, their physical and mental conditions would only deteriorate over time, which resulted in many revolts happening before the ships even left from shore, or sometimes even before the captives boarded the ships. Again, the conditions by which the captives were under were extremely difficult, and these revolts were not uncommon. The slave ships themselves were often designed with

Saturday, May 16, 2020

The Use of Literary Techniques in Robert Frosts Stopping...

Robert Frosts, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening tells a story of a man and his horse who are walking in the woods that are possibly owned by someone the man knows. Snow falls softly from the sky and the woods are silent. He mentions that the horse does not want to stop with him without a reason. The only sound audible is the horses bell that jingles around his neck. Snow makes a sweeping sound in the wind around them. The man wants to stay and enjoy the peacefulness, but realizes that he must get back to his responsibilities. The theme of this poem is the simplicity of nature and how alluring it can be. To be able to enjoy such a scenery and not have obligations is the mans dream, but reality quickly reminds him of his responsibilities. Frost uses symbols, allegorical meanings, and metaphors to help reveal the theme of his poem; that duties and responsibilities limit people from being able to do the things they love sometimes. The most important symbol in Frosts poem is the woo ds which are lovely, dark, and deep (13). and are very seducing to the reader. These woods are tempting the man to stay and enjoy them. One could interpret this as a longing to lay down in the woods to a deep, dark sleep and never wake up, possibly death. The man stops with his horse in these woods and watches them fill up with snow (4). In relation to the theme, the woods confirm the simplicity of nature and all its wonder. Another symbol in this poem is the horses bells thatShow MoreRelatedRobert Frost1276 Words   |  6 PagesRobert Frost has been described as an ordinary man with a deep respect for nature, talking to ordinary people. To what extent do you agree with this view? Poetry is a literary medium which often resonates with the responder on a personal level, through the subject matter of the poem, and the techniques used to portray this. Robert Frost utilises many techniques to convey his respect for nature, which consequently makes much of his poetry relevant to the everyday person. The poems â€Å"Stopping by WoodsRead More Life and Death in Thomas Do Not Go Gentle and Frosts Stopping by Woods 2066 Words   |  9 PagesLife and Death in Thomas Do Not Go Gentle and Frosts Stopping by Woods  Ã‚        Ã‚   Carpe Diem(seize the day) is a Latin phrase which has come to denote an important literary motif especially common in lyric poetry: the encouragement to make the most of present life while it lasts, or to live for the moment, (The UVic Writers Guide). Both Robert Frosts Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening and Dylan Thomass Do Not Go Gentle explore the idea that people should attempt to live lifeRead MoreRobert Frost Wrote The Revered Poem, â€Å"Stopping By Woods1870 Words   |  8 PagesRobert Frost wrote the revered poem, â€Å"Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening† at his home in Shaftsbury, Vermont in 1922. It appeared in his fifth collection of poems entitled, â€Å"New Hampshire,† published in 1923, which won his first Pulitzer Prize. In this poem, the reader is privy to a few moments of the thoughts of a man who pauses in the silence and solitude of the winter woods. It’s a poem with such simplicity that a child can commit it to memory and such complexity that scholars repeatedly explicateRead MoreThe Road Not Taken By Robert Frost Essay1156 Words   |  5 PagesRobert Lee Frost was an American poet. His work was initially published in England before it was published in America. He is highly regarded for his realistic depictions of rural life and his command of American colloquial speech. Robert Frost’s poem â€Å"The Road Not Taken is a narrative poem on making decisions. A narrative poem is one that tells a story. It follows a similar structure as that for a short story or novel. There is a beginning, middle and an end, as well as the usual literary devicesRead MoreRobert Frost : A New England Poet3698 Words   |  15 PagesRobert Lee Frost Known for being a New England poet Robert Frost was born in San Francisco, California on March 26th, 1874. Born to a New England father William Prescott Frost Jr. and a Scottish mother Isabelle Moodie who moved to the west coast from Pennsylvania after marriage (Bailey). Both his parents were teachers and poets themselves, but his father later became a journalist with the San Francisco Evening Bulletin (Bailey). Frost spent 12 years of his life growing up in San Francisco, until

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Persuasive Speech Outline - 1169 Words

Title: What’s In Your Glass? Topic: The Opposition of Artificial Intelligence Method of organization: Refutative Specific Purpose: My specific purpose of this speech is to encourage those who oppose artificial intelligence to see the good that can be done with this technology. Thesis: In this presentation I hope to explain the opposition that artificial intelligence faces, show examples of successful uses of AI, and challenge those opposed to this technology to consider a change of position. Introduction: I’m sure that most of you have seen the movie I, Robot, or perhaps The Matrix. Both are very popular movies and both contain an antagonist in the form of an artificial intelligence system that sees destruction and†¦show more content†¦Both projects sound like they can have a positive effect in the field of medicine right? i.) Both of these projects are employing the use of AI to sort and link data. b.) Another example comes from the financial giant American Express Co., where AI is used to monitor for fraudulent activities. i.) According to Vernon Marshall, who is American Express’s Functional Risk Officer, the company’s â€Å"machine learning models help protect $1 trillion in charge volume every year, making decisions in less than 2 milliseconds.†(Clark, 2014) Can you imagine trying to keep all of that information current by other means? III. We can see that artificial intelligence can have many beneficial applications, from healthcare advanceme nt to financial security. But why should you take the stance of supporting the development of artificial intelligence? a.) We have a moral obligation to each other to help society improve itself. Specifically, if we can help one person better their situation through the use of artificial intelligence then why wouldn’t we? What if it benefited you? i.) Remember, companies are already using AI to help solve problems in healthcare. Imagine being told you are suffering from a terminal condition and the only way to cure it is to use research derived from the use of AI. Would youShow MoreRelatedPersuasive Speech : Persuasive Outline2149 Words   |  9 PagesDyadic Persuasive Comprehensive Outline General Purpose: To persuade Specific Purpose: To persuade my audience how to be more successful as a college student. I. Introduction A. Attention Getter: How many of you have said that there are too many options? Whether you are talking about choosing a college, class selection once you get to college, or even something as simple as choosing what to eat for dinner tonight. If you made a choice on what career field you will enter after college, you come toRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline1309 Words   |  6 PagesPersuasive Speech Outline (Using Monroe’s Motivated Sequence) Topic: Voting in Election Specific Purpose: To persuade the audience to vote in democratic elections to voice out their opinions and beliefs regardless of their background, to decide for their future, and to preserve the essence of democracy. Attention: * Provide a vivid description of people struggling to fight for their voting rights in certain countries. * Share relevant facts /statistics of how a small number of votesRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline1028 Words   |  5 PagesPERSUASIVE SPEECH OUTLINE TOPIC: WHY YOU SHOULD GIVE UP SMOKING PROPOSITION: Give up smoking and you will save yourself and the others around you and live in a healthy environment. SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES/PURPOSES: I want to persuade my audience on how harmful smoking does to the body and giving up the habit is the right way to do because it will literally save their lives and the people around them and the environment as well. SPEECH PLAN ATTENTION STEP: Opening statement: Smoking†¦Read MorePersuasive Speech : Speech Outline819 Words   |  4 PagesElmer Lombana Jr. Dr. Shane Gunderson SPC 2608 November 6, 2015 Persuasive Speech Outline General Purpose: To persuade Specific Purpose: To persuade my audience to contact Florida Department of Education to incorporate Personal Finance courses in high schools. Thesis: Instead of teaching children in schools non-vital skills like sewing and baking, Personal Finance should be taught in Home Economics or as a curriculum during a summer semester if not fulfilled with aforementioned elective. I. TheRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline994 Words   |  4 Pages10/31/12 Persuasive Speech Outline I. ADG- It is not a myth why people call fast food disgusting. On a Friday night during my graveyard shift at McDonald’s a drunken customer passed by the Drive-Thru around 2:30a.m.While my coworker was taking his order the customer decided to cuss and call her really offensive names because she couldn’t get his order right. She got mad and decided to spit in the customers Sweet Tea, she was immediately fired when another coworker told the manager. Since I startedRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline2793 Words   |  12 PagesSamples of Persuasive speech Outline SAMPLE 1 From the time we wake up in the morning to the moment we lay are head down at night, we are constantly making choices. Some take a conscious effort, some should, and some do not. Have you ever taken the time to really stop and think if you’re giving the correct amount of attention to the right choice? I’m here today to ask you to be more conscious of what you eat. I’m going to discuss health reasons, effect of food advertisements, reading foodRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline1649 Words   |  7 PagesComm 110 Informative Outline Template (remember that a presentation aid must be used within the body of this speech.) Please label these parts as you create your outline: I. Introduction a. College is an integral time period for many people – college is a time for freedom, receiving an education, and learning what it means to survive on little to no food for long periods of time. Or at least that’s what it’s been like for me. Food is arguably one of the most important things to a collegeRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline1232 Words   |  5 PagesI. Attention A. Attention Grabber: In this moment in time, the United States has only 5 percent of the world s population, but holds 25 percent of the world s prisoners, this is costing the country approximately $80 billion dollars per year. B. Tie to Audience: From your point of view, you might think that keeping all the law violators behind bars is a positive thing because it enhances public safety, but you should take a look on how incarcerating people impacts families and the nation’s economyRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline On Immunizations1004 Words   |  5 PagesPersuasive Speech Outline Immunizations Specific Purpose: The specific purpose of my topic is to persuade my audience that immunizations are important and actually do more good than harm. Thesis: Immunizations are one of the most important medical advances in history. They have severely reduced the effects of dozens of viral infections and everyone should consider getting immunized. Introduction: Take a good look. These are the effects of just some of dozens of infectious diseases we are dealingRead MorePersuasive Speech Outline Essay1117 Words   |  5 PagesPersuasive Speech Outline ALL 50 STATES SHOULD HAVE MANDATORY MOTORCYCLE HELMET LAWS TOPIC: Mandatory motorcycle helmet laws PURPOSE: To persuade the audience that all 50 states should enact and enforce a mandatory motorcycle helmet law. THESIS STATEMENT: Mandatory helmet laws save lives and dollars. INTRODUCTION ï‚ · ï‚ · ï‚ · Did you know that only 19 states and the District of Columbia have laws in place that require all motorcycle riders to wear a helmet? 19!? 28 states have laws covering

The Negative Effects Of Divorce - 1710 Words

Getting a divorce is not an easy decision. As a matter of fact, for many people getting a divorce is one of the hardest things they will have to deal with. Divorce has a long-lasting effect on the entire family. For example, according to Clarke-Stewart and Brentano (2006, p. 56), the couple getting a divorce can feel anxious and depressed by the situation. They also mention that children can be the most affected because they might feel confused and betrayed. However, the aftermath of divorce is different for everyone. For instance, the ages of the children can have an impact on how they deal with the divorce. Furthermore, the way parents cope with the aftermath of the divorce can have a negative or positive outcome in their children’s†¦show more content†¦For instance, both her parents were young when they decided to get married. Her mother was twenty while her father was twenty-two. It is also important to note that in order for her family to be financially stable, h er father had to work long hours which cause a strain in the relationship. Cindy’s father was always working meaning he spent little to no time at home. In addition, having children added more stress, since her father had to work hard to provide for his family. Regrettably, the longer a couple is married the higher risk of a divorce. Cindy’s parents had been married for eleven years when they decided to dissolve their marriage. At the end, Cindy’s parents had plenty of risk factors that contributed to her parents divorce. Life after the divorce was not easy for Cindy either. Just like many children when her parents divorce, there was no explanation or a simple conversation. Children are left worrying about what will happen to their family (Clarke-Stewart Brentano, 2006, p. 133). There was a change in her lifestyle. Cindy explained that she had to move multiple times since her mother could not afford the rent. At the same time, she experienced seeing her mother work more than usual and keep her away from the family (Hetherington Kelly, 2002). Along with the lack of money, she was also faced with the absence of one parent, in Cindy’s case her father. Just like Cindy’s father left theShow MoreRelatedNegative Effects Of Divorce1718 Words   |  7 PagesDivorce is a controversial issue in the United States. On one side of the argument, some researchers claim that children of divorced parents are still able to adapt to their new environment and have an enhanced level of maturity, among othe r things. On the other hand, researchers like Karl Zinsmeister believe that the effects of divorce on children can never be fully overcome and marital conflicts cause significantly less damage to children than divorce does (Zinsmeister, 1996). The purpose of thisRead MoreNegative Effects Of Divorce1475 Words   |  6 PagesDivorce is the termination of a marriage or marital union, the canceling or reorganizing of the legal duties and responsibilities of marriage, Divorce occurs after a husband and wife decide not to live together anymore and they do not want to marry one another. They agree to sign legal documents that allow them to marry other people if they so wish. Divorce is a problem that is increasing every year. It also affects our society, which most countries face. Divorce causes many negative effects, someRead MoreNegative Effects of Divorce1303 Words   |  5 PagesDivorce can be one of the biggest environmental pressures put on a child with lasting affects that can lead well into their adulthood. With an increase in the number of divorces taking place each year it is starting to become a major concern for not only children and their families but also for society as a whole. Every year around one million children are affected by divorce; furthermore when looking at this year alone half of the children born will see their parents divorce before they reach ageRead MoreDivorce Negative Effects1285 Words   |  6 Pages2017 A Positive Outlook on a Divorce Divorce is always a dreadful experience in a persons life, especially a childs’. When parents divorce, children are left hopeless and confused. A divorce can cause a child to have a variety of different reactions. The effects on the child are much more important than the actual divorce. A divorce causes the most damage to the children in the divorce. Each child sees a divorce differently, but most divorces have a negative impact on the childs life. WhenRead MoreThe Negative Effects Of Divorce1447 Words   |  6 Pagesworldwide is divorce. Research has shown that there is a significant amount of effects on children after a divorce. This is most likely because of the mental and physical chaos the children are feeling. In many divorce cases, there are long-term effects that hinders children from having a peaceful adult-life. These effects include: relationship issues, inability to make a place feel like a home, and the emotional hardship that comes with moving away from a parent . Aside from the negative effects divorceRead MoreNegative Effects Of Divorce1409 Words   |  6 Pagesthe Center for Disease Control and Prevention 813,862 divorces have been granted in 45 out out the fifty states in 2017 alone (Marriage and Divorce). Around half of those divorces will involve children. With divorce becoming a prominent phenomenon it has become increasingly important for the two parties involved to remain courteous. Children’s lives are easily impacted when they are forced to go through this life altering situation. Divorce can inflict damage both mentally and psychologically. WhenRead MoreThe Negative Effects of Divorce689 Words   |  3 PagesWith approximately 876,000 divorces per year in the United States alone, many people today are bringing up the controversial topic: should divorces be made harder to obtain? Many people think that it would be best if families stayed together, while others believe that an unhappy marriage is useless, and the dissolu tion of the marriage is the best choice. However, with current laws being the way they are, the process of getting a divorce is too simple, which is why people tend to opt out of theirRead MoreThe Negative Effects Of Divorce1089 Words   |  5 Pagesending a marriage, but it can no longer ignore the massive effects that come with it, especially to children. To the parents, the effect is separation from one another. To the children, the effects include engaging in drug abuse to get over the emotional turmoil, committing a crime to earn money to support the family, and performing poorly in school, especially in spelling, reading, and mathematics (Scott et al., 2014). With the rate of divorce increasing rapidly in the country, children are going toRead MoreNegative Effects Of Divorce On Children1072 Words   |  5 PagesWhat are the Negative Effects of Divorce on Children When I was five years old I was forced to make a choice. This was a choice many children should not have to make and can never really be prepared for. My parents were getting a divorce and they decided it was in my best interests to give me the option to live with whomever I chose. It was a burden that to this day affects my relationship with one of my parents. Ultimately, I chose to live with my mother and from then on, my father would barelyRead MoreThe Negative Effect of Divorce on Children Essay941 Words   |  4 PagesThe Negative Effect of Divorce on Children Divorce has a negative effect on the psychological and social aspects of our children, which may appear instantly or not come to the surface for years. This is why I think that divorce should only be a last resort and not rushed into even by couples with the most troubled marriages. The only acceptable reason for someone rushing into divorce is if they or their children are in danger. I believe that marriage is a commitment not to be taken lightly and

Mattel Case Study free essay sample

The teaching note critiques the response’s suitability to the level and impact of the crisis and recommends alternatives. It illustrates that communicators should be cognizant of their international stakeholders and should proactively manage global issues of public concern such as outsourcing and product safety. An example would be that to avert future recalls, Mattel should work closely with its Chinese suppliers and government agencies to implement realistic quality control solutions for which it can be held accountable. The company must reassure stakeholders that outsourcing to China does not mean sacrificing quality. Regaining consumer confidence and controlling the dissemination of product safety information requires strong corporate communicators who can delicately and deliberately balance complex relationships. Table of Contents I. Case Study 1. Overview 2. Company History 2. 1 Beginnings 2. 2 Reorganization as Mattel, Inc. 2. 3 Products 2. 4 Accolades for Ethics 2. 5 Financial Performance and Annual Report (2006) 3. Toy Safety in the United States 3. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Standards 3. 2 Mattels Independent Standards 4. Issues in Outsourcing to China 4. 1 China as the World’s Workshop 4. 2 Quality Control Challenges and Implications 4. 3 Mattel’s China Operations 4. 4 Managing International Communication 5. Mattels Recall History 5. 1 Power Wheels Product Recall 1998-2001 6. The Competitive Environment and Competitor Recalls 6. 1 Toy Industry Overview 6. 2 MGA, Hasbro, and JAKKS 6. 3 Financial Impacts on Competitors 7. Mattel Product Recalls 2007 7. 1 Recall Timeline 7. Mattels Response: Successful External Communication 7. 3 Mattels Response: Internal Reorganization 7. 4 Mattels Response: Shortcomings 7. 5 Competitor Response 7. 6 Industry Response 7. 7 Investor Response 7. 8 Watchdog Response 7. 9 Parent/Consumer Response 7. 10 Government Response 8. Current Dilemma II. Appendixes 1 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 6 7 7 8 8 8 9 9 10 10 11 11 12 13 14 14 15 16 16 17 17 17 18 1. Overview: During the summer and fall of 2007, international toy giant Mattel and childhood favorites Barbie ® and Elmo ® dominated media headlines f or weeks. Reports talked not of Christmas sneak previews or of rising sales, but of recalls, lead poisoning, and deadly magnets. In total, an excess of 21 million toys were pulled from shelves in little over a month, either because they were coated in toxic lead paint or contained small, poorly designed magnets, just the right size to be swallowed by curious kids. The voluntary recalls offered Mattel the opportunity to become a model of effective shortterm crisis communication strategy. Working with the Consumer Product Safety Commission to execute the communication component of the recall at an accelerated pace, Mattel placed notifications in 20 languages on its website, sent personal letters to its entire customer database, sent letters and posters to its retailers, manned a hotline, placed full page ads in major newspapers, and worked closely with the media. However, the CPSCs subsequent revelation that Mattel first suspected lead contamination in early June, a good two months before it announced the first of four recalls on August 4, has overshadowed much of what the company claims it did right. The disclosure calls into question Mattels prioritization of its customers interests and the quality of its products over its business interests. According to CPSC regulations, companies must report suspected safety issues within 24 hours of detection, although companies do not often comply. For example, in 2001, Mattel waited more than three years to announce a Power Wheels ® defect. Six years later, consumers and investors may question why the company still fails to comply with federal reporting regulations and why it still lacks the processes and infrastructure to prevent such crises from recurring. Adding to the controversy surrounding Mattels recalls is that the products were manufactured in China, a country recently under fire for exporting contaminated products such as pet food and toothpaste. In light of this, the Mattel case provides a unique opportunity to explore quality control, product safety and reporting regulations in the context of a larger, global issue: outsourcing manufacturing to developing countries. Not only must Mattel regain the trust of consumers, investors, and regulators through transparent corporate communication and commitment to real change, but it must also regain the trust of the international community. . Company History: An in-depth look into Mattels corporate history provides context for its current quality control and recall issues. This section explores the company’s beginnings, products, accolades, and financial performance. 2. 1 Beginnings For more than 60 years, this El Segundo, California-based company has entertained children with household brands such as Ken ®, She-ra ®, Tickle Me Elmo ® and the Cabbage Patch Kids ®. The corporation went public in 1960, listed on the New York and Pacific Coast Stock Exchange in 1963, and joined the Fortune 500 in 1965 with sales topping $100 million. Over the years, Mattel has acquired big-name brands such as Fisher-Price ® (merger, 1993) and Tyco Toys ® (merger, 2 1997) and obtained lucrative licensing rights to Disney ® (1988) and Nickelodeon ® (1996). i 2 In 1965, Mattel also entered the educational preschool toys market with the See ‘N Say ® talking toy. Three years later, the company launched its World of the Young acquisition strategy. First came Monogram Models, followed by Metaframe (pet products), Turco (playground equipment) and Ringling Brothers and Barnum Bailey Circus. Mattel also dabbled in film. 2. 2 Reorganization as Mattel, Inc. In 1972, 12 years after it went public, Mattel reorganized as Mattel, Inc. , a parent company with seven subsidiaries. By 1983 and after an unsuccessful foray into the electronic games market, the company reported a loss of $394 million from its non-toy lines. In 1984, the company made the strategic decision to close all non-toy related subsidiaries, dedicating itself 100 percent to the design and manufacture of childrens toys. 3 2. Products Mattel currently manufactures more than 800 million toys annually, 4 targeting four audiences: infant/preschoolers (26 types of toys), girls (63 types), boys (36 types) and grownups/parents (22 types). Brands for infants and preschoolers include Dora the Explorer ® and FisherPrice ®. ii Major brands for girls include Barbie ® (1959) and American Girls ®. iii Boys toys include Hotwheels ® and ESPN Toys ®. iv Producing around 5,000 new toys a year, 5 Mattel created some of the twentieth centurys biggest toy hits. When Tickle Me Elmo ® hit shelves in 1996, it sold more than $100 million in its first year and $200 million in its second. In a 2007 ranking of holiday toys conducted by Consumer Reports Magazine, Mattels Hot Wheels ® Racing Timer came in the top four. 6 And the dolls stack up well too. The Barbie ® as Princess Rosella doll, Disneys High School Musical ® dolls, and Barbie Girls ®Ã¢â‚¬â€an MP3 player that links up with a virtual online world—were ranked holiday allstars in 2007 by Toy Wishes Magazine. 7 2. 4 Accolades for Ethics For more than 20 years, Mattel has incorporated social responsibility into its business practices. In 2007, Business Ethics magazine ranked Mattel number 92 of the top 100 Best Corporate Citizens, a list drawn from the countrys largest 1,000 publicly listed companies. 8 The article praised Mattel for its Global Manufacturing Principles (GMP), a set of externally monitored ethical manufacturing standards first adopted in 1997. These principles require Mattel’s supply chain partners to uphold its stringent standards for safe working conditions, employee health, fair wages, and environmental consciousness. To date, Mattel remains one of the only toy companies to have such checks in place. The company also publishes an annual corporate social responsibility report for investors and claims that its product safety regulations either meet or exceed those set by the CPSC. 9 Likewise, Mattel prioritizes philanthropic work that benefits children. In 1978 it launched Mattels Childrens ii ii Acquisition: Aviva Sports ® (1991). Licensing: Harry Potter ® (2000) and Barney ® (2001) Also Barney ®, Blues Clues ®, Sesame Street ® and Winnie the Pooh ®. iii Also Diva Starz ®, Kelly ®, Loving Family ®, Kitchen Play ® and Polly Pocket ®. iv Also Nickelodeons Avatar ® and Matchbox ®. 3 Foundation, a partnership with nonprofits to fund childrens projects using a percentage of pre-tax profits. 10 2. 5 Financial Performance and Annual Report (2006) 11 As the worlds largest toy manufacturer, Mattel has consistently performed well financially. From 2005 to 2006, for example, Mattel maintained the sales and profit growth depicted in Table 1: Table 1: Financial Comparison, 2005 to 2006 2005 2006 Net Sales $5. 18 billion $5. 65 billion Net Income $417 million $592. 9 million Cost of Sales $2. 81 billion $3. 04 billion Product Costs $2. 21 billion $2. 42 billion Gross Profit (as a % of net 45. percent 46. 2 percent sales) Increase 9 percent % $175. 9 million $232. 2 million $204. 9 million .4 percent http://www. shareholder. com/mattel/annual. cfm, Annual Reports: 2005 and 2006 According to its 2006 annual report, Mattel plans to maintain long-term business growth by reinvigorating the Barbie ® brand, maintaining growth across core brands and non-traditional brands, and i mplementing Lean supply chain initiatives to improve manufacturing, distribution, and sales. 12 3. Toy Safety in the United States Toy safety in the United States is monitored by the CPSC. Although corporations are expected to comply with its standards and regulations, they are encouraged to adopt more stringent regulations of their own, as has Mattel. This section explores both the CPSC’s standards and Mattel’s independent standards. 3. 1 Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Standards Congress established the CPSC as part of the Consumer Product Safety Act in 1972. Regulating more than 5,000 consumer products ranging from lawn movers to childrens toys, this independent federal agency protects the public from unreasonable injury and death. 13 Food, drugs, firearms, cars and motorcycles lie outside its jurisdiction. In 2007, the CPSC negotiated 472 cooperative and voluntary recalls involving almost 110 million products. 14 Approximately 21 million of these products were toys from Mattel. The CPSC has many responsibilities. It develops, issues and enforces voluntary and mandatory industry standards. It can recall products and oversee repairs. It can ban consumer products proven to be so dangerous that no industry standard could realistically protect the public. The CPSC also inspects suspicious products and researches new hazards. It is responsible for communicating its findings to the media. 5 Using the CPSC’s website or toll-free hotline, consumers can not only gather product safety information, but also report unsafe products. Toy companies like Mattel and their foreign suppliers are expected to follow the CPSC’s regulations and recall protocol. One of the most important regulations stipulates that a company must report a suspected defect or harmful product within 24 hours of dis covery. 16 Unfortunately, 4 companies often ignore this regulation. For instance, Mattel failed to comply during its recall of Power Wheels ® in 1998 and again with the recalls in 2007. Other regulations are specific to substances and materials. One example of a harmful substance is lead, which can cause neurological damage, learning disabilities and hearing problems in children when ingested. To prevent such devastating consequences, the CPSC requires all American manufacturers, suppliers, importers, and retailers to abide by the provisions of the Federal Hazardous Substances Act (FHSA), which bans all childrens toys containing hazardous amounts of lead. 17 The CPSC strengthened its guidelines in 1977 by lowering permissible lead levels from . 5 percent to . 06 percent to comply with the Lead Based Paint Poisoning Prevention Act. 8 Other regulations apply to specific toy parts. In 1995, the CPSC applied the Child Safety Protection Act (CSPA) to all products sold in the United States. 19 The CSPA tightened restrictions on small parts and balls in childrens toys to reduce choking deaths. If a company disregards these guidelines, the CPSC can seek civil penalties in court. In 2007, it recovered a total of $2. 75 million in fin es from companies that failed to report hazards within the 24-hour limit. Of this amount, $975,000 was meted to Mattel alone for a defect in FisherPrices ® Little People Animal Sounds Farm. 0 In 2001, Mattel paid $1. 1 million—almost half of the total fines issued in 2007—for waiting more than three years to report a Power Wheels ® fire hazard. Many experts, including Pamela Gilbert, a former CPSC executive director, disparage the CPSCs penalties as too soft to deter large corporations from violating product safety laws. 21 Others add that the CPSC is weak and lacks funding to enforce its mostly voluntary regulations. Moreover, the CPSC does not have pre-market jurisdiction, which means it cannot test products before they hit stores shelves. 2 Under pressure to respond, Congress is deliberating to increase the maximum monetary fee that can be slapped on companies. 3. 2 Mattels Independent Standards Despite past fines, Mattel asserts it abides by CPSC regulations and follows its own Code of Conduct and Global Manufacturing Principles. 23 An excerpt from its Code of Conduct on product quality and safety, adopted in 2003, reads: Mattels reputation for product quality and safety is among its most valuable assets Childrens health, safety and well-being are our primary concern. We could damage our consumers trust if we sell produ cts that do not meet our standards. Our commitment to product quality and safety is an integral part of the design, manufacturing, testing and distribution processes. We will meet or exceed legal requirements and industry standards for product quality and safety. We strive to meet or exceed the expectations of our customers and consumers. Any compromise to product safety or quality must be immediately reported to Worldwide Quality Assurance. 24 To meet this commitment, Mattel conducts periodic checks of toys pulled off production lines; new supplies, such as paint, are tested upon arrival. 5 Mattel has also set up testing laboratories for some of its contractors. Ironically, Mattel had built a lab for the supplier culpable in the 2007 lead paint 5 crisis, suggesting that, Even with regular inspections, breaches of codes of conduct in the supply chain become almost an inevitability. 26 Some toy analysts are reluctant to blame the toy giant for the lead paint crisis. If something like this can happen to Mattel, which has some of the most stringent standards in the industry, what does that mean for the others manufacturers of such products? argues Richard Welford of CSR Asia Weekly. 27 The recall is particularly alarming since Mattel, known for its strict quality controls, is considered a role model in the toy industry for how it operates in China, adds the Associated Press. 28 In fact, just weeks before the August recalls, Mattel was one of only two toy companies to allow the New York Times to visit its China plants. The New York Times article published on July 26, 2007, commended Mattels product safety inspection procedures, which it maintained had improved since the Power Wheels ® recall. . Issues in Outsourcing to China: The movement of manufacturing to developing countries such as China, where corruption is widespread and regulations are difficult to enforce, has arguably contributed to recent recall crises. This section looks at China†™s role as toy supplier to the world and to Mattel. It also analyzes the challenges of quality control and international communication. 4. 1 China as the World’s Workshop Approximately 80 percent of toys bought in the UNITED STATES today 29 are manufactured in factories scattered up and down Chinas east coast. Although American companies may own several factories in China, writes Atlantic Monthly reporter James Fallows in his article China Makes, The World Takes,† they mostly commission manufacturing to local subcontractors. 30 The region with the largest production capacity is Guangdong province in southeastern China. In 2005, more than 5,000 manufacturers in Guangdong exported almost USD$12 billion in plush, electronic, and plastic toys (see Table 2). The next largest exporters are Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Shanghai, Shandong, and Fujian provinces, which collectively exported more than USD$2. billion in toys that same year. Of that amount, the China Toy Association estimates that an estimated USD$6. 5 billion in toys was exported to the UNITED STATES, with Germany and Holland placing second and third (see Table 3). Table 2: Chinese Toy Exports 2005 Region Guangdong Jiangsu Zhejiang Shanghai Shandong Fujian Total # of Manufacturers gt; 5,000 gt; 700 gt; 1,000 gt; 700 gt; 550 gt; 500 Main E xport Category Export Value in 2005 Plush toys, electronic toys, plastic toys $11. 934 billion $850 million $871 million $549 million $367 million $226 million Plush toys Wooden toys, baby bicycles Baby bicycles, strollers Plush toys Electronic toys, plastic toys 6 China Toy Association, http://www. toy-cta. org/en/Introduction_1. asp Table 3: China 2006 Main Export Destinations Unit: USD$ Rank 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Destination USA Germany Holland England Japan France Russia Australia Export value 6,553,321,398 1,469,936,169 1,055,340,703 1,040,271,120 718,578,989 230,893,819 216,180,371 213,071,333 http://www. toy-cta. org/en/Introduction_3. asp 4. 2 Quality Control Challenges and Implications Controlling the quality of products manufactured overseas remains a continual problem. For example, 177 recalls in the United States post-2006 have involved products manufactured in China. This is perhaps due to challenging operational and cultural differences. It is not easy to find the right factory, work out the right manufacturing system, ensure the right supply of parts and raw materials, impose the right quality standard, and develop the right relationships of trust and reliability, writes Fallows. He likens the supply chain to intellectual property in importance and writes that companies that have found a good chain will not divulge it to competitors. 1 In an interview with the New York Times, Dane Chamorro, regional director of global consulting company Control Risks, says that, â€Å"The samples you get are always fantastic; but once they rope you in they can cut back. And a lot of Chinese companies will do anything to cut costs. † 32 Andy Switky, managing director of California design firm IDEO, describes the general Chinese mentality as happy with cra ppy, which makes it harder for Chinese suppliers to fully incorporate western quality control standards. 3 But some experts argue that corporations cannot possibly be held 100 percent accountable for slip-ups when hundreds of suppliers and thousands of employees are involved. Others say it is impossible for a company to test every batch of toys produced. The most a company can do is pick its suppliers carefully, strengthen communication, consistently implement rigorous inspections, and threaten to cease business with companies that fail to comply. 4. 3 Mattel’s China Operations Mattel has a long history in China, where it has manufactured toys for 25 years. 4 The company owns five factories 35 and outsources 50 percent of production to third-party manufacturers 36 subject to quality control inspections. Together, these factories produce 65 percent of Mattels toys. In recent years, Mattel has transferred a greater portion of testing responsibility to manufacturers themselves. One example is batch testing. Ten to 15 years ago, Mattel conducted the inspections itself. Now, to reduce costs, the company outsources testing to suppliers and manufacturers. But industry experts fear these contractors will cover up and cut corners. 7 These experts also claim Mattel is inextricably tied to China. In a Washington Post article, Eric Johnson, a management professor at Dartmouth College and a specialist on the U. S. -China toy 7 industry, says that Mattel is dependent on Chinese industrial capacity for its toys They have significant investment of their own capital and dont want to lose it. 38 Coupling Mattel’s dependence with its plans to expand into China’s lucrative consumer market, Johnson concludes Mattel has a vested interest in maintaining good relations with China. 4. Managing International Communication Managing complex international relationships during calm times and crises is a key communications challenge for corporations such as Mattel. For instance, the job involves being able to â€Å"sensitize managements and host governments to the mutual benefits of multinational capital, technology, and management-skills-providing jobs. 39 Additionally, corporate communicators must cultivate cross-cultural relationships based on respect for equals. 40 They must convince host countries that their goals are not imperialist and exploitative. 1 And because a companys reputation may be affected by its suppliers business practices, corporate directives should be clearly communicated to suppliers at all times. There are several trade groups that facilitate communication between China and the West. One Chinese organization that lobbies the Chinese government on toy industry interests is The China Toy Association, which works with the China National Standard Committee to revise toy safety standards, maintains communication with international media, and organizes international toy fairs and trade shows. The Toy Industry Association (TIA) likewise mediates conflict between China and its Western partners during times of crisis, while tactfully asserting the need for change, as it did during a toy safety conference held in Guangzhou, China, on November 15, 2007. Industry experts claim both Chinese and American companies must increase collaboration. But ultimately American importers are responsible for the quality of imported goods. v 5. Mattels Recall History: Of the three billion toys sold in the United States each year, less than one percent is recalled. 2 But even just one recall can be incredibly damaging. It harms a company through lost sales, damaged reputation, diversion of resources, costly customer support, and the threat and expense of litigation. 43 It is clearly a crisis to avoid. Yet in spite of quality control efforts, Mattel has suffered 36 recalls since 1998 and two formal CPSC admonishments. 44 This section reviews Mattel’s most controversial recall prior to 2007. 5. 1 Power Wheels ® Product Recall 1998-2001 The Power Wheels ® crisis began in 1995 when parents began filing consumer complaints with the CPSC. i In total, parents reported 71 accidents involving faulty brakes, 116 fires due to faulty electrical wiring, and 1,800 incidents of overheating, short-circuiting, or melting. Nine children suffered burn injuries. 45 In response, the CPSC independently investigated the ride-on toy vehicle from 1995 to 1998. The inquiry revealed that the affected models were manufactured as early as 1986, and although Mattel was aware of complaints, it neglected to file a CPSC report for more than three years. 46 v vi Statement made by Erin Ennis, vice president of the U. S. -China Business Council. Mattel acquired Power Wheel s from Kransco in 1994. The faulty products were on the market as early as 1984. 8 Even after the CPSC stepped in, Mattel was uncooperative and refused to admit any wrongdoing. Anne Brown, the CPSCs then chairwoman, told the Wall Street Journal that, They didnt want to do a recall It took way too long. 47 And Pamela Gilbert, the CPSCs executive director at the time, added that, Mattel was uncooperative in giving key documents over to them during the investigation. 48 In the end, the CPSC forced Mattel to implement a recall; however, the toymaker continued to blame consumers who it claimed improperly used or tampered with the toys. 9 Mattel also strongly stated that the 24-hour reporting regulation was unreasonable and that it preferred to conduct an internal investigation before reporting to the public. 50 6. The Competitive Environment and Competitor Recalls: Though less than one percent of toys manufactured per year are ever recalled, a high profile recall can result in industry-wide profit loss; this m eans that competitors are likewise affected. 51 This section first overviews the American toy industry and then examines three of Mattel’s competitors. 6. Toy Industry Overview In the United States alone, approximately three billion toys are sold per year, 52 amounting to an estimated USD$22 billion 53 in annual sales. And these numbers are growing. According to Table 4, annual toy sales for the period of July 2006 to June 2007 rose to USD$22. 5 billion dollars from USD$22. 1 billion the previous year. Table 4: State of the Toy Industry: 05-06 and 06-07: Category Action figures and accessories Arts Crafts Building Sets Dolls Games and Puzzles Infant/Preschool Youth Electronics Outdoor Sports Toys Plush Vehicles All other Toys TOTAL July 05June06 (USD) 1. billion 2. 5 billion 686. 8 million 2. 7 billion 2. 4 billion 3. 2 billion 962. 1 million 2. 9 billion 1. 3 billion 2. 0 billion 2. 1 billion USD 22. 1 billion July 06-June 07 (USD) 1. 2 billion 2. 7 billion 684. 3 million 2. 7 billion 2. 4 billion 3. 3 billion 1. 1 billion 2. 8 billion 1. 4 billion 2. 2 billion 2. 0 billion USD 22. 5 billion % change -7 8 0 1 0 4 17 -5 3 9 -4 2 State of the Industry Report, http://www. toyassociation. org/AM/Template. cfm? Section=Industry_Statistics, accessed November 26, 2007, sourced from The NPD Group / Consumer Panel Tracking 6. 2 MGA, Hasbro, and JAKKS In addition to Mattel, heavyweights in the toy industry include MGA Entertainment, Hasbro, Inc. , JAKKS Pacific, Inc. , Bandai, Lego, and Leap Frog. The first three are major competitors of Ma ttel’s who also struggle with recalls and the challenges of operating a socially responsible business. MGA is perhaps most well known for its sassy, street-savvy Bratzâ„ ¢ dolls, one of Barbie ®Ã¢â‚¬â„¢s biggest rivals. Barbie has taken a tumble from her pedestal, reports the International Herald Tribune. Once thought of as unbeatable in the doll market, Mattels Barbie has been kicked to the curb this season by its big-lipped, big-headed competitor: Bratz dolls These urban dolls with their up-to-the-minute fashion accessories and their ephemeral cool factor are becoming must-haves for girls this year. The journal quotes Sharon Korbeck, editorial director of Toy Shop Magazine, who adds, They are very edgy. Barbie will never be edgy. 54 Hasbro and Mattel share many similarities. For instance, Hasbro owns numerous brands— 117 in total—including Milton Bradley ®, Parker Brothers ®, G. I. Joe ®, and i-Dog ®. 55 Similarly, the toymaker’s corporate communications emphasize ethics and environmental awareness. On its website for example, Hasbro asserts that over the past seven years it has reduced greenhouse gas emissions at its U. S. facilities by 39 percent and has begun recycling 84 percent of generated waste at its 31 international locations. 56 To monitor corporate social responsibility and its business in Asia, Hasbro established a committee to review the companys transparency, environmental stewardship, and Far East Code of Conduct. 7 It also monitors its vendors to ensure factories comply with international workplace fairness and product safety regulations. 58 In 1993, the company implemented Global Business Ethics Principles. It is also a founding member of the International Council of Toy Industries CARE program. Like Mattel, Hasbro is also prone to recalls. Since 1990, it has experienced 21 recalls (compared to Mattel having 36 since 1998), all o f which are posted on its website. 59 Most recalls resulted from poor design features (e. g. Playskool ® Klackeroos choking hazard), risk of impact injuries (e. g. Super Soaker Monster Rocket), and food allergies (e. . milk, wheat, and eggs in EASY-BAKE ovens). None were attributed to shortcuts in the manufacturing process. A third competitor is JAKKS Pacific Co. This top-five toy company has manufactured childrens toys, games, and leisure products since 1995. vii Its 17 product categories include action figures, water toys, sports toys, dolls, and role-play toys. Its brands include Play Along ® and Flying Colors ®. 60 JAKKS Pacific also licenses products from Disney and Nickelodeon. viii Unlike Mattel, all of JAKKS Pacific’s products are manufactured overseas, where the Hong Kong division, JAKKS Pacific, Ltd, oversees production. 1 However, a search of its website revealed little information about outsourcing practices and recall history. Moreover, there is no dedicated recall page. Only by searching the CPSC website for recalls by company does one find three recent incidences: one in July 2002, one in July 2002, and one February 2007. 62 6. 3 Financial Impacts on Competitors A recall affects not only the culpable corporation’s stock prices, but also the industry as a whole. For example, during the worst of Mattel’s recalls in 2007, Hasbro’s and JAKKS Pacific’s vii viii And from 2000 to 2002, Forbes magazine ranked JAKKS a top 200 small U. S. company. Also, Creative Designs Internationalâ„ ¢ and Road Champs ® 10 stock prices dropped as well. ix 63 Fortunately, both companies managed to bounce back, with closing prices on December 31 at $25. 58 and $23. 61, x and both outperformed Mattel in 2007. 7. Mattel Product Recalls 2007: The previous five sections provide context for Mattel’s four voluntary recalls that began in August 2007 just weeks after American toymaker RC2 recalled 1. 5 million toy trains coated in toxic Chinese lead paint. Adding to the controversy was that fact that all of Mattel’s recalled products, like RC2’s, were manufactured in China. Knowing it had to act fast, Mattel partnered with its old adversary, the CPSC, to implement a global crisis communication campaign. This section outlines the strengths and weaknesses of Mattel’s communications strategy and also the responses of its affected publics, such as competitors, investors, parents, and the government. 7. 1 Recall Timeline To understand Mattel’s communications strategy, it is helpful to review the events that transpired during the recall period. According to Table 5 below, the recalls started in August and continued into November, just in time for the holidays. As the holiday season is the most lucrative for toy companies, the third and fourth quarters of each fiscal year usually bring in the most sales. 64 Therefore, a fast and transparent corporate response was imperative. Table 5: Recall Timeline June-November 2007 Date June 8 June 9 June 10 July 26 August 2 August 7 August 14 September 4 September 11 September 21 October 25 November 6 Event Mattel is first alerted to possible lead paint contamination. The CPSC deadline for Mattel to report the problem. CPSC deadline passes; Mattel fails to act. Mattel files full recall report with CPSC. Mattel voluntarily recalls 1. 5 million Fisher-Price ® toys that are supposedly coated in paint containing dangerously high levels of lead. Mattel identifies a Chinese factory as the source of the contamination scandal. Mattel voluntarily recalls a further 17. 4 million products containing loose magnets easy for children to swallow (Mattel Play Sets and Barbie ® Doll Tanner). Mattel voluntarily recalls another 850,000 toys due to lead paint contamination (Barbie ® Accessory Sets, Its a Big Big Worldâ„ ¢ and GeoTraxâ„ ¢ Engines). CEO Robert A. Eckert publishes an opinion statement in the Wall Street Journal. Mattels Vice President Thomas Debrowski apologizes to China for blaming Chinese suppliers for the Mattel recalls. Mattel voluntary recalls Go Diego Go! â„ ¢ Rescue Boats coated in paint containing hazardous levels of lead. Mattel voluntarily recalls 155,000 Laugh Learnâ„ ¢ and Learning Kitchenâ„ ¢ toys, manufactured in Mexico, due to a choking hazard. x x Mattels stock dropped as much as 25 percent during the worst of the recalls. Mattel’s stock value closed at $19. 04 on December 31. 11 7. 2 Mattels Response: Successful External Communication On July 26, 2007 Mattel issued an official recall report to the CPSC. The regulatory agency agreed to help the toymaker alert the public. Together, they implemented the CPSCs fast track p rogram 65 to communicate with parents and retailers using a mix of print, electronic and new media. The tactics are outlined in Table 6: Table 6: Fast Track Tactics Mattels Fast Track Recall Tactics 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 Staffed its call center, created a CPSC-approved script Created a recall portion of its website Sent notifications and posters to retailers Gave retailers advance notice of recall so they could remove products from shelves even before logistics of recall had been finalized Sent news releases to media Started a toll-free, multi-lingual interactive voice response phone line to assist callers to determine if their product is an affected one Launched a web-based recall identification tool on its website n more than 20 languages. CEO video posted on website Allowed customers to register a product for recall online or over the phone Mailed recall notification letters to customers who were in their customer relations database due to past recalls Ran full page ads in newspapers on August 14 and September 5: USA Today, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times , The Chicago Tribune, the Washington Post Conducted print, online and television satellite interview Posted ads on websites frequented by parents, such as Yahoo! Disney, Nickelodeon, and The Cartoon Network Offered customers prepaid postage labels so that they could return the products Compensate customers with vouchers equal to or greater than the retail price plus tax As online communications facilitate quick and controlled corporate responses, Mattels website played a leading tactical role. For example, the company posted a video of CEO Robert Eckert addressing parental concerns over the safety of Mattels products. 66 His comments reinforced several key points. 1. He stressed the companys commitment to children. Eckert said, Nothing is more important than the safety of children we are confident our toys are the safest ever. 2. He emphasized the companys dedication to open communication with the public. Theres always room to be better we are communicating frequently and openly. 3. He assuaged parents fears over the companys inspections systems, saying that, All paint must be tested before it is used on toys, no exceptions. Weve significantly increased testing and unannounced inspections at every stage of production e are testing every production run of finished toys to ensure compliance before they reach consumers. 4. He then praised Mattels new three-point check system, which he claimed had been followed by other toy companies. 12 5. Finally, he reported that Mattel had had no further lead paint problems, claiming success for the tighter inspection systems implemented after the August crisis. Recurring themes included trust and child safety. Eckert personally thanked parents for putting t rust in Mattel and reiterates that child safety is Mattels number one priority. The website also answered parent questions in a section called What Were Doing and What You Need to Know. Queries such as Are toys safe for the holidays? and How can I trust that Mattels products are safe? reinforced the themes of safety, commitment, and trust stressed in Eckerts video. A new topic that arose was parental self-efficacy, for example What can I do, as a parent, to ensure my childs safety? 67 A page titled Tips for Safe Toys This Holiday guided holiday buying. What Mattel noticeably dif not do, as it did during the Power Wheels ® incident, was place blame on consumers. 68 7. 3 Mattels Response: Internal Reorganization Besides executing an external information blitz, Mattel reorganized internal operations to emphasize commitment to product safety. In the weeks following the recalls, Mattel established a corporate responsibility division to report to Eckert. The group, consisting of 500 employees worldwide, would monitor domestic and international vendor and manufacturer adherence to Mattels toy safety standards. Eckert also announced a new Product Integrity Policy and Audit, a function that will combine an internal audit organization and an independent audit organization to monitor Mattel and vendor facilities compliance with Mattels product integrity standards. 69 The company also instituted a three-point safety check system: 1. Mattel will only use paint from certified suppliers. Every single batch of paint at every single vendor will be tested. Paint that doesn’t pass will be discarded without exception. 2. Mattel will increase unannounced testing and inspections at every stage of the manufacturing process. 3. Mattel will test finished toys from ever single production run to ensure they meet accepted lead levels before being shipped to stores. 70 Eckert attested to this systems success in an opinion piece he published in the New York Times: Mattel is conducting a thorough investigation, combing through our products to ensure that we identify and recall any product affected by lead paint, no matter how tiny the area For example, we identified lead paint on the headlights of a three-inch train car and we recalled it. If there is a needle in the proverbial haystack, we aim to find it. I encourage other companies to do the same. 71 To reinforce this commitment, Mattel plans to apply American standards of lead toxicity levels to European Union countries, even if local EU standards are not as high. 72 Analysts remain upbeat about Mattels future. In a research report from the Bank of America, analyst Michael Savner estimates the total cost of the recalls at an insignificant USD$24 million. Other s predict that as Mattel advertises tighter testing regulations, parents will continue to buy its toys. 73 For example, though approximately 2. 4 million defective Polly Pocketâ„ ¢ dolls were recalled in November 2006, Polly Pocketâ„ ¢ sales did not fall. The brand weathered on, and Mattel 13 even expanded the line. 74 And if other toy companies disclose similar defects during the next few months, Mattel might be praised for getting the word out first. 75 7. 4 Mattels Response: Shortcomings Mattel’s successful responses do not completely deflect its errors. Firstly, the toymaker has on several occasions failed to comply with CPSC reporting requirements. Though Mattel was alerted to the Fisher-Price ® paint contamination on June 8, it did not file a full report with the CPSC until July 26, more than a month and a half later. Secondly, critics accuse the toymaker of expending a disproportionate amount of effort on preserving its reputation. For example, subsequent reports revealed that Mattel misled publics to believe its Chinese suppliers and manufacturers were responsible for both the lead paint and the magnets, when in fact the magnet hazard was an internal Mattel design flaw. This blame-shifting backfired as China retaliated, and on September 21 Mattels executive vice president for world-wide operations admitted to Chinas product safety chief that the magnet recall should not have been associated with China; he also apologized to Chinese consumers. 6 Critics claim such pandering to corporate interests exposes excessive investment in public relations and the bottom line. A third area where Mattel could improve is compensation. Mattel is offering equivalent value coupons good for other Mattel products in exchange for recalled products. Given the inconvenience caused to consumers and the need to motivate them to return the affected products, this offer may not be sufficient, 77 says John Quelch, a senior associate dean at the Harvard Business School. 7. Competitor Response Due to a growing consumer backlash against toys manufactured in China, the toy industry as a whole suffered during Mattels recall crises (see Chart 7 xi ). As a result, Mattels forwardthinking competitors made their operations more transparent. According to the chart, Hasbros stock steadily gained value between January and July 2007, only to drop in August 78 —right when Mattels recalls began. Between August and November, Hasbros stock prices slowly recovered, with third quarter net revenues still up 18 percent compared Chart 7. Stock Prices 2007 35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 Mattel Hasbro JAKKS Company -Feb-07 April 4, 207 4-Jun-07 4-Aug-07 4-Oct-07 US Dollars xi Data compiled from corporate websites: Mattel, JAKKS, and Hasbro. 14 with the third quarter of 2006 (USD$1,039. 1 million). 79 However, prices dipped ag ain when Mattel announced its fifth recall on November 6, 2007. On November 6, Hasbro closed at USD$28. 46; between November 7 and 9 it dropped to USD$25. 96. Like Mattel and Hasbro, JAKKS Pacific experienced a drop in stock prices in early August. Fortunately performance slowly rose in the third quarter and even remained stable during Mattels November recalls. The companys third quarter report for 2007 showed a net income of USD$47. 3 million compared to USD$40. 5 million the year before. 80 In response to Mattels lead paint crisis, Hasbro implemented a question-and-answer page on its website. The questions addressed consumer concerns regarding offshore manufacturing and product safety. For example, one question highlighted Hasbros safety and quality control checks and its independent, third party testing of all products imported from China. Hasbro also increased the number of unannounced checks imposed on Chinese factories and products before they are delivered to U. S. retailers. 81 JAKKS Pacific’s website, on the other hand, failed to address consumer concerns about its Chinese manufacturers. 7. 6 Industry Response Industry groups responded to the crises by providing stakeholders with objective toy safety analysis. They also facilitated international communication and pushed for legislative change. Our analysis of what had happened was that our toy safety standards were excellent, as they had been for years; but that the toy safety testing and inspection process had failed us, said Carter Keithley, president of TIA. The U. S. toy industry has been very pleased with its China based manufacturers for many years. The errors that resulted in lead paint and other hazardous materials being used on children’s products were the acts and omissions of a very few, which he said did not reflect the standards maintained by the vast majority of their manufacturers. 82 To cater to consumer concerns, the TIAs website posted the slogan, Toy safety is our top priority, year-round. For the 2007 holiday season, the group offered extra services to parents, such as a new website (www. oyinfo. org) and a toll-free hotline (1-888-88-4TOYS), both of which provided safety tips, advice from experts, and objective recall information. Members of the toy industry also collaborated with the Chinese governments General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) to force tighter testing protocols on Chinese manufacturers. 83 For example, on November 15, 2007, the TIA and the Chinese government co-hosted a toy safety conference in Guangzhou, China. Representatives from almost 300 Chinese toy manufacturers attended. ii At the conference, the TIA proposed a conformity assessment program to guarantee that all toys entering the United States are â€Å"in compliance with strengthened U. S. safety standards. 84 The projected program would include the following measures: †¢ Creating new procedures with the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for sampling and testing products as they come off the production lines. †¢ Developing criteria to accredit testing laboratories or inspecting organizations. Only the accredited will be qualified to perform the above-mentioned conformity testing procedures. Drafting federal legislation that requires all toys sold in the United States to pass the revised tests to ensure they conform to safety standards. 85 xii It should be noted that there are thousands of toy manufacturers operating in China. 15 Industry analysts xiii said it was imperative to act immediately. If toy companies did not enforce rigorous standards then, we would expect to see more frequent recalls in the future. 7. 7 Investor Response Unsurprisingly, the recalls shook investor confidence, as evidenced by the company’s gradually decreasing stock price during the recall period. In August, for example, Mattels stock price continued a downward trend that had begun as early as July. The price then slowly rose in September, even after the September 4 recall was disclosed, only to later drop again (See Table 8). In addition, a large pension fund filed a shareholders suit against Mattel in October 2007, alleging that the companys board of directors and executives purposely delayed announcements in order to sell as many faulty products as possible and to artificially increase stock shares. They claimed that company insiders dumped shares to increase profits in the months leading up to the recall, as share prices dropped 20 percent immediately after. 86 Table 8: Mattel Stock Prices 2007 http://www. shareholder. com/mattel/graph2. cfm 7. 8 Watchdog Response The lead paint predicament extends beyond children’s toys to products like jewelry and furniture. After the recalls, several groups including the Ecology Center and the Center for Health, Environment and Justice tested 1,200 childrens products and found that 35 percent contained lead, while only 20 percent contained no lead. Tracey Easthope, director of the Ecology Centers Environmental Health Project, said that lead levels in 17 percent of the childrens products tested would likely trigger a recall. Jewelry products rather than toys most often contained high levels of lead. 87 xiii Here, Gerrick Johnson of BMO Capital Markets. 16 7. 9 Parent/Consumer Response According to a 2007 Harris Poll, the recalls could hurt the 2007 holiday toy market. For example, an increased number of American consumers reported being wary of products manufactured in China. One-third said that they would likely buy fewer toys in December 2007, while 45 percent said they would outright avoid toys manufactured in China. Sixty-eight percent of consumers who had been directly affected by the recalls said they would also avoid toys manufactured in China during the holiday season. 88 7. 10 Government Response In the wake of the year’s recalls, the United States government elevated the importance of product safety. This was evidenced by a string of congressional hearings (at which Mattel’s leadership has testified) and the fact that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi called for the resignation of the U. S. Product Safety regulator in November 2007. The outcome of such activities could mean stricter regulations for toymakers. For instance, on September 12, 2007, Eckert appeared before the Senate Appropriations Committee to defend Mattels outsourcing of manufacturing to countries like China. At issue was not just Mattels three recent recalls, but that 177 products from China have been recalled since 2006, a staggering number compared to Taiwan (12) and Mexico (6). Senator Sam Brownback argued that American consumers and legislators were fed up with defective products. Though Mattel claimed it had strict safety inspection procedures, Brownback harangued the company for willingly choosing to manufacture in a country known for low standards and corruption. 89 On September 20, 2007, both the CPSC and Mattel testified at a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing investigating lead-tainted childrens toys and product recalls. Testimonies are expected to guide lawmakers in discussing tighter import and export regulations. 90 At the hearing, Mattel was chastised by lawmakers. The CPSC will also investigate Mattel to determine whether it should levy fines against the toymaker. Regulations born from these deliberations could include federally mandated inspections conducted by outside parties and higher penalties for those that fail to comply. Surprisingly, the regulations may receive a warm reception from the affected companies. Industry sources cited by ABC found that Mattel and Hasbro would actually support more stringent regulations enforced by an independent, international regulatory body. 91 8. Current Dilemma: In the aftermath of Mattels repeat recalls and failure to comply with CPSC reporting requirements, Mattel has been criticized for putting the bottom line ahead of customer safety. Parents are wary of toy quality and reportedly less likely to purchase toys manufactured in China during the 2007 holiday season. Working closely with its Chinese suppliers and government agencies operating within the toy industry, Mattel is focusing on realistic quality control solutions for which it can be held accountable. The company faces challenges such as reassuring the public that outsourcing to China is not a high-risk manufacturing move, and that Chinese suppliers and the Chinese government are likewise willing to cooperate. Regaining consumer confidence and controlling the dissemination of product safety information requires strong corporate communicators who can delicately and deliberately balance supplier, customer, governmental, media, and investor relationships. 17 Appendix I An opinion statement written by Robert A. Eckert and published in the Sept. 11, 2007 issue of the Wall Street Journal. http://www. mattel. com/message_from_ceo. html What is going on at Mattel? Ive heard this question many times over the course of the past few weeks as weve conducted three voluntary recalls of products, due to impermissible levels of lead in paint. Ive heard from concerned parents, employees, my neighbors, former colleagues and even my own children. I think just about everyone knows weve had recalls. Thats good. It means we have achieved our main goal of successfully communicating widely and openly with our many constituents. Media coverage of the recalls, overall, has been helpful in spreading the news to consumers. Unfortunately, in some cases, opinions have been attributed to me that Ive never held, let alone expressed. More seriously, the character of Mattel has been maligned. Weve even been accused of being unapologetic by the very same newspaper in which we ran full-page ads apologizing. I apologize again. I want to make clear where I stand and look forward to doing the same before Congress. I fully support the U. S. Consumer Products Safety Commission and the vital work that it does. We have worked closely and respectfully with the CPSC throughout this difficult period, and I applaud their prompt actions and professionalism. As a father of four, I am intimately aware of the expectations of parents they want safe toys, and they want assurances that those toys have been tested to make sure that theyre safe. Currently, lead paint is topmost on parents minds. I want parents to be assured that we are taking action. To complement our many existing safeguards, we have implemented a strengthened three-stage safety check system to prevent lead in paint. First, we require that only paint from certified suppliers be used and that every single batch of paint at every single vendor be tested. If it doesnt pass, it doesnt get used. No exceptions. Second, we have significantly increased testing and unannounced inspections at every stage of the production process. Finally, finished toys from every production run must be tested for lead to ensure they are safe before reaching store shelves. Mattel is conducting a thorough investigation, combing through our products to ensure that we identify and recall any product affected by lead paint, no matter how tiny the area. The level of detail in our findings is indicative of how intensively we are searching. For example, we identified lead paint on the headlights of a three-inch train car and we recalled it. If there is a needle in the proverbial haystack, we aim to find it. I encourage other companies to do the same. Our toys are overwhelmingly safe. To date, our lead-related recalls of toys produced in the past 12 months represent less than half of 1 percent of our production. Id rather the number was zero. As we continue our lead paint testing, its possible that we could find more items that have parts that may not meet our specifications. Obviously, I hope we dont find anything else. But if we find any 18 issue, no matter how small, we will work closely with authorities world-wide to inform consumers quickly and take prompt corrective action. There has been quite a lot of talk about toy testing in past weeks. I also want to talk about this test of Mattel as an organization, and what people can expect from us moving forward. It is my sincere pledge that we will face this challenge with integrity and reaffirm that we will do the right thing. We will embrace this test of our company and the opportunity to become better. When I was a young man growing up in suburban Chicago, my father encouraged me to earn his trust through my actions rather than just talk about what I was going to do. Today, I tell my children deeds, not words. And it is on this principle that Mattel will move forward. We will earn back your trust with our deeds, not just with our words. 19 Appendix II For Immediate Release Contact: Mattel Corporate Communications 310-252-4705 corporate. [emailprotected] com Media Statement – September 21, 2007 Some reports of Mattels meeting today with Chinese officials have been mischaracterized. Since Mattel toys are sold the world over, Mattel apologized to the Chinese today just as it has wherever its toys are sold. The U. S. Congress has focused its inquiry on lead paint, given its long history of interest in that issue. Mattel has told the Chinese, as we did the U. S. Congress, the lead-related recalls arose because a minority of manufacturers did not follow the companys rules. In fact, Chinese officials have informed Mattel they are pursuing criminal charges against several individuals connected with at least one of those manufacturers. Mattel informed the U. S. House Energy and Commerce Committee in a letter dated September 5th (available on the Committees website), The magnet-related recalls account for roughly 11. million of the recalled toys shipped to retailers in the U. S. The magnet-related recalls do not involve lead paint or manufacturing failures by Mattel or its vendors, including vendors in China. The magnet recall was a result of Mattel having adopted a new design standard for securing magnets in toys and retroactively applying that higher standard. To the extent that the Chinese were cri ticized for magnet-related recalls, Mattel apologized. Mattel has always believed and publicly stated that our toys must be safe regardless of where they are produced or by whom. The complete text of Mattels written statement in China earlier today is posted below. 20 Appendix III September 21, 2007 PRESS STATEMENT OF MATTEL Mattel is committed to working with the Chinese Government and manufacturers to promote and improve the safety of toys and other consumer products. Safety of toys is a matter of critical importance to Mattel, whether they are made in China or elsewhere around the world. Mattel has enjoyed a very successful partnership with manufacturers in China for 25 years. Mattel produces approximately 800 million toys annually. Out of these, less than 0. 3% were recalled because of impermissible levels of lead contained in the paint and approximately 0. 5% of the toys produced from 2003 to 2006 were recalled as a result of magnets which could become loose. The toys recalled worldwide in relation to magnet issues were 17. 4 million pieces, and the toys recalled in connection with impermissible levels of lead in paint were 2. 2 million pieces. The magnet related recalls were due to emerging issues concerning design and this has nothing to do with whether the toys were manufactured in China. Mattel does not hold Chinese manufacturers responsible for the design in relation to the recalled magnet toys. Mattel has since changed the relevant design in January this year to effectively lock in the small magnets in the toys so that they cannot be easily detached. Mattel is committed to applying the highest standards of safety for its products. Consistent with this, Mattels lead-related recalls were overly inclusive, including toys that may not have had lead in paint in excess of the U. S. standards. Subsequent testing indicated that some of the recalled toys did not fail the U. S. standards. Mattel also applied the same high standards to recalls of its products in the EU and other countries despite the fact that some of these products may have met local safety standards. 21 Appendix IV SCCT Crisis Response Strategies 92 1. Deny Strategies: a. Attack the accuser: Crisis manager confronts the person or group claiming something is wrong with the organization. The organization threatened to sue the people who claim a crisis occurred. b. Denial: Crisis manager asserts that there is no crisis. The organization said that no crisis event occurred. c. Scapegoat: Crisis manager blames some person or group outside the organization for the crisis. The organization blamed the supplier for the crisis. 2. Diminish Strategies a. Excuse: Crisis manager minimizes organizational responsibility by denying intent to do harm and/or claiming inability to control the events that triggered the crisis. The organization said it did not intend for the crisis to occur and that accidents happen as part of the operation of any organization. b. Justification: Crisis manager minimizes the perceived damage cause by the crisis. The organization said the damage and injuries from the crisis were very minor. 3. Rebuild Strategies: a. Compensation: Crisis manager offers money or other gifts to victims. The organization offered money and products as compensation. b. Apology: Crisis manager indicates the organization takes full responsibility for the crisis and asks stakeholders for forgiveness.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Structural Health Monitoring of Civil Infrastructure †Free Samples

Question: Discuss about the Structural Health Monitoring of Civil Infrastructure. Answer: Introduction Civil infrastructure is very fundamental area when it comes to addressing the prosperity of any society. To keep track of the structural integrity of civil infrastructure, and monitor their overall performance, SHM systems are put into use. Structural Health monitoring involves the use of intelligent sensors and related technologies to collect a wide array of data and giving an output that will be used to rate the condition of a structure or structural element. SHM systems help in the detection of possible damage on civil infrastructure due to natural hazards, aging, and/ or deterioration1. This study aims at investigating the overall use of sensors for SHM in of asset management, assessment of structural integrity, risk assessment and scrutinizing of civil infrastructure in New Zealand. Several studies in the field of damage detection in civil infrastructure have shown a rising need for the monitoring of structures such as bridges, dams, tunnels, buildings and other civil infrastructure. According to Chang, many SHM systems depend on changes in the shape modes and/or the changes in the resonant frequencies of a structure. This method works by the principle of sensing the slight variations in a structure. Hence, the variations in a structure due to environmental factors such as vibration, temperature variations, or even humidity changes are considered as noise in SHM systems. There is a need to make systems that would take measurements other than those considered as noise to the SHM system. Rytter suggests that in New Zealand, SHM is mainly use for damage detection in road bridges, especially along major highways 4 The main areas of application for bridges are: in short span and medium span bridges, for performance checking, operational health and security monitoring, and overall implementation in New Bridges. Further suggests that the level of damage detection and condition rating relies on the systems ability to predict damage and classify it into four general levels: Level 1: ability to sense the occurrence of damage; Level 2: detection of a likely location of destruction; Level 3: sensing of the likely degree of destruction; and Level 4: forecast the safety and level of service of the structure. The following are the objectives of the research: To understand the significance of sensors in SHM systems; To establish the challenges faced in the implementation of SHM in New Zealand; To appreciate the existing measures put in place by Statutory bodies in New Zealand for monitoring the structural integrity of civil infrastructure; and To highlight opportunities to be explored in SHM. When monitoring the condition and performance of non-homogeneous material like concretes, the systems used for sensing should be able to collect and record data in small increments with an allowance for local effects and discontinuities. Therefore, a number of sensing technologies have been developed. They main ones used in New Zealand include: Wireless sensors: These are sensors with an autonomous platform for collection of data. They are fitted with strain gauges that are sensitive to inertial forces induced into the structures. The inertial sensors have a gyroscope and accelerometer. Studies are being done in New Zealand to develop embedded wireless sensors to be integrated into concrete elements for purposes of monitoring the concrete in structures from the initial curing phase and subsequent strength gain of the concrete. Fiber optic sensors: The commonly used type of fiber optic sensor is the discrete point sensors which works by detecting the strains along localized areas of the construction material. They are ideal for homogeneous material. While there are a variety of benefits offered by the Structural Health Monitoring Systems, there are also major challenges associated with structural health monitoring systems. These include: Buying a structural health monitoring system is not the same as purchasing a commodity. Design work is needed for each system whether the structural monitoring system is going to be used on an existing structure or a new one. Due to high costs involved and inadequate resources required to incorporate a structural health monitoring system in a structure, many organizations find it difficult to implement one. Also, many structural health monitoring systems depend on sensors that acquire data about only one point to monitor properties i.e. point sensors. This limitation is not about efficiency or reliability; rather, it is about insight. Therefore, events that occur between critical points will not be captured hence important structural response will be lost. Finally, employment of point sensors in structural health monitoring involves interpolation to simulate additional measurement locations. This practice leads to biased damage indices since true local information is lost. Another major challenge faced by many existing structural health-monitoring systems is data normalization. This is the procedure of separating changes in sensor output caused by damage and changes brought about by varying environmental conditions. Since most structural health monitoring systems do not monitor continuously, data normalization becomes a big challenge. This becomes even harder when point sensors are used to collect the data. SHM is used in the process of damage detection and condition characterization of civil infrastructure. SHM is used to keep track of the structural integrity of buildings, dams, tunnels, levees, bridges, wind turbines, and other civil infrastructure. The following are the opportunities in the SHM technology: Control of material properties, process of construction and geometry more so in segmental construction with a complicated posttensioning and/or erection process; SHM may help in the safety management of infrastructure under construction as incomplete structures are at risk due to accidents and environmental hazards; SHM offers the chance for the validation of assumptions made during design with regards to forces, deflection, displacements, drifts, and reactions during construction. Avenues for further work In this paper, the focus has been the various ways in which Structural health monitoring can be applied in civil infrastructure damage detection. However, there are a numbers of avenues to be pursued in research to ensure that SHM gains maximum potential in New Zealand. This includes: As the sensors used in SHM are likely to be influenced by the environmental changes such as temperature variations and random vibrations during the design period of the civil infrastructure, a study of the impacts of environmental changes on the performance of SHM systems. As sensors will be collecting a vast amount of data, a data collection framework and inventory needs to be developed. Therefore, further work needs to be done focusing on developing software functionalities and algorithms to aid in civil infrastructure database and repositories management. To incorporate SHM in the monitoring of infrastructure in adverse environments, studies need to be conducted towards the development of chemical sensors for corrosion, humidity, and corrosion especially for marine structures and civil infrastructure built in areas with high Sulphur content. Conclusion Well-managed structures are the safest and durable. The ability to measure flows of information throughout the building is vital in ensuring digital future buildings that utilize innovation and next generation monitoring systems. Structural health monitoring is currently an area of interest as it presents a potential solution for future examination of structures. With the size, cost and ability of sensors becoming cheaper, the more it is becoming financially viable and feasible to install sensors all over the world. Currently, there is a gap between advanced sensing technologies that are being developed and their applicability to monitor structural performance of buildings. The ability to sense the presence of defects in concrete structures has a vital role in the damage assessment of the structures. Therefore, further research and experimental validation tests are needed to evaluate the limitations and practicality of installing the latest sensor technology to monitor the structural health of structures. References BROWNJOHN, J. M. W. Structural Health Monitoring of Civil Infrastructure. Chang, P. C.; Flatau, ; Liu, S. C. Review Paper: Health Monitoring;,(2003). New Zealand Office of the Auditor General (NZOAG). NZ Transport Agency: information and planning for maintaining and renewing the state highway network.; New Zealand Office of the Auditor General (NZOAG): Wellington,(2010). NZ Transport Agency research. Data collection and monitoring strategies for asset management of New Zealand road bridges; Wellington, (2012). New Zealand Office of the Auditor General (NZOAG). Report of the controller and auditor-general on local government: results of the 200203 audits: part two other issues arising 200203.; New Zealand Office of the Auditor General (NZOAG): Wellington, (2004). New Zealand Qualification Authority (NZQA). New Zealand qualification framework (NZQF) levels. LYNCH, J.. An overview of wireless structural health. Kothari, C. R. Research Methodology: Methods and Techniques; New Age International (P) Ltd.: New Delhi, (2004). Cross, E. J.; Wordon, K.; Farrar, C. Structural health monitoring for civil infrastructure. In Health assessment of engineered structures.; World Scientific Publishing., (2013). Rytter, A. Vibrational based inspection of civil engineering structures (PhD thesis).;, (1993). Glii?, B.; Inaudi, D.. Fibre optic methods for structural health monitoring.;, (2007).