UNILEVER ASSIGNMENT 1
Cescau’sappointment as Unilever CEO led to the streamlining of the firm’smanagement structure. Although he focused on the merits of fastdecision-making, some critics labeled his actions as an attempt torationalize poor performance (Keegan & Green, 2013). During hisfinal year as CEO, Greenpeace accused Unilever of condoning thedestruction of rainforests by purchasing palm oil from unscrupulousIndonesian farmers. In response, Cescau changed the company’sstrategy and pledged to acquire the commodity solely from sustainablesources. Unilever also shifted its focus to emerging markets tomotivate sales growth. However, the new CEO, Paul Polman, acceleratedthe existing cost-cutting measures (Keegan & Green, 2013). Healso prioritized the increase in sales volume as compared to higherprices. Additional strategies included driving the sales of personalcare products.
1. Unilevershould prioritize the adoption of sustainable practices in comparisonto making profits. In this regard, the company should avoid palm oilfrom producers, who contributed to deforestation. Furthermore, theorganization should continue working with small-hold farmers toimprove the latter group’s standards of living. Notably, Unileverwould be guaranteed of continuity if it became a responsiblecorporate citizen.
2. Notably,Cescau’s response to Greenpeace’s palm-oil protest wasappropriate since it displayed maturity. Some Indonesian farmers hadbeen clearing large sections of rainforest to plant oil palms.Consequently, Unilever`s purchases of such raw materials had a directimpact on the destruction of natural resources. Furthermore,Greenpeace had conducted a far-reaching campaign that would destroythe former’s reputation. Therefore, it was necessary for Cescau toimplement immediate changes in Unilever’s palm-oil sourcingpractices.
3. Indeed, aleaner management structure and increased emphasis on emergingmarkets will enable Polman to lead the company to improvedperformance. In fact, a streamlined corporate mechanism wouldeliminate bureaucracy. Hence, Unilever would have a rapid response tochanging consumer preferences and market trends. Besides, the companywould ensure quicker rollouts of new products (Keegan & Green,2013). Focusing on emerging markets would also be a proper strategyof increasing sales volumes.
Keegan, W. J. & Green, M. C. (2013). Global marketing (7thed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.