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Global Business and Technology: the Case of Toyota

In this time and age, companies are on the lookout on how they can penetrate bigger and better markets. With multinational corporations abounding in almost every major country in the world, competition is stiff and these companies need to look into their strategies to make sure they survive in the global market. One of the means that drives a business to expand to other areas is technology. The company may introduce the latest technology in a certain line of products or the technology enables the company to cut costs and the production times.

In any case, the result is global expansion and wider market reach for the business. Toyota managed to expand its operations due to technological advancements and improvements. The operations of Toyota began in the 1930s with the desire of Kiichiro Toyoda to offer automobile to the Japanese populace. The Japanese government supported the efforts of Toyoda. The Toyota Motor Co. was established in 1937 although the Toyota Group engaged in textile and other areas of business.

As technology in production and trade restrictions in Southeast Asia relaxed, Toyota began expanding into several markets. Its first foreign stop was at Thailand in the 1960s. It was also during this time

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that Toyota expanded into Australia. Towards the end of the 1960s, Toyota has exported more than one million automobiles. In the 1980s, Toyota also expanded into Canada and into the United States where it had to compete with the big companies in Michigan such as Ford, General Motors and Chrysler. At first, Toyota’s competition with these Big Three was very stiff.

But before long, Toyota managed to beat the competition because of various innovation and changes in technology as well as in its strategy in marketing, sales and managing human resources (Toyota Motor Corporation, 1988). Among the important technological changes that Toyota went through is the introduction of fuel efficient cars. With its automobiles, Toyota marketed its cars as fuel-efficient and friendly to the environment. The emergence of hybrid cars also helped its campaign. Toyota has a number of assembly plants in the United States and it is increasing.

While the company was hurt by the soaring gas prices in the past year or so, it made a comeback by the sale of its compact and fuel efficient cars. With the introduction of Toyota Prius, a hybrid electronic car, it is set to capture a market where people are increasingly becoming concerned with global warming and the environment. Training Needs Due to Globalization While Toyota has already established a widespread presence in the United States and all over the world, managers, salespersons and other employees need to undergo several trainings related to cross cultural communication and management.

Because of the foreign presence of the company, the executives and managers will need to hire local employees from the host country. Inevitably, communication gaps and culture crash will occur unless the employees are trained on how to deal with each other effectively (Black & Mendelhall, 2006). The process of selling automobiles and the products of Toyota will be affected by the way that the salespersons relate with the prospective customers. Cultural sensitivity should therefore become part of the training of employees and managers.

In addition to this, the company should learn the best way to implement the marketing plans of the organization. While the bulk of the training may consist of communication and cultural sensitivity, it would be important for the company to train employees on how to enhance the image and the reputation of the company. This is not the sole domain of the Public Relations team. Rather, the whole company is involved in enhancing the reputation of the organization. Using Technology for Training This generation saw the rise in popularity of the Internet and other networking applications.

With these applications available for Toyota, it should engage in networking and developing programs online for the training of its staff not only in one country but all over the world. With this, the company will be able to monitor the number of employees undergoing certain training all over the world. Such an online training program should be accompanied by a classroom-type training program that will deal with the various topics identified by the human resources department in consideration of the needs of the company (Cox & Blake, 1991).

Toyota can engage in these training programs as part of its global expansion strategy. Such a training program will greatly help in the company’s drive to position itself in various countries where it is present now. Although Toyota is considered as the World’s No. 1 car seller in the past few years, it still has room to grow, especially that the concern for the environment is being awakened in most consumers all over the world.

As this trend continues, Toyota will do well to train its employees to deal with such matters. Reference Black, J. S. & Mendelhall, M. (2006). A practical but theory-based framework for selecting cross-cultural training methods. Human Resource Management, 28 (4), 511-539. Cox, TH & Blake, S. (1991). Managing Cultural Diversity: Implications for Organizational Competitiveness. The Executive, 5 (3), 45-56. Toyota Motor Corporation. (1988). Toyota: A history of the First 50 Years. Japan: Toyota Motor Corporation.

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