Stakeholder relations

The company stated that Eastern's "stakeholders" were people, organizations, and groups of people who had a vested interest in the success of the company. Major stakeholders included:

■ Employees—who seek continued employment and income, quality of work life, and opportunities to learn and develop. Their perceived risk was related to job security as well as lack of growth, development, and marketability.

■ Customers—who seek quality products at low cost and reliable delivery. Their perceived risk was related to product quality and timing, but mostly price. Cost was a major issue as competitors dumped quality aluminum at lower prices.

■ Owners—who seek return on investment and continued viability. Their risk was grounded in stock value.

■ Regulators—who seek compliance with laws and regulations. Their risk was in noncompliance with regulations and the cost of enforcement and litigation.

■ Community—that seeks contributions through taxes and service, and minimal environmental impact. Its risk exposure was in losing the industry tax base, but having to pay pollution and environmental control costs.

■ Suppliers—who seek to meet Eastern's requirements and continue business with Eastern. Their perceived risk lays in their inability to meet Eastern's contract requirements and sharing more of the risk in contracted work than they can handle.

To illustrate the documentation of a risk-based strategy, the following discussion contains an executive summary, situation analysis, and detailed description of eight key strategies and how they were translated to new projects and products. The situation analysis provides a framework for the strategies including mission and goals, management direction, SWOT analysis, and linkage to the parent company strategic plan. The eight strategies are supported by specific initiatives and a system to measure achievement of those initiatives.

This strategic plan for Eastern Aluminum Company covered a five-year period from 1996—2000 and thus helped guide the company and its employees into the 21st century. As the general long-term pathway to growth and profitability, the plan presented the company's approach to achieving Eastern's central strategic goal: to compete successfully on a continuing basis in the world aluminum marketplace. The plan served a wide variety of purposes, including support to ownership decisions; support to budgeting and resource allocation; guidance for management and employee planning, training and education; and support to long-term capital investment planning. A major element of the strategic planning process that produced this document was the communication of the plan and its underlying vision, assumptions, and values to the employees because the hope was that they would generate new concepts and new products themselves.

The plan explored Eastern's current strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats, and presented and discussed eight basic key strategies, initiatives, and measures to accomplish the central strategic goal.

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