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A Case for Analysis: Catastrophe or Opportunity?

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A Plan for Planning – Current Scenario

Based on the nature of the fire, the factory is deemed a total loss.  All personnel have been accounted for, so there are no casualties.  A “rebuild and recovery” team needs to be put into place, to formulate plans going forward.  This team should involve the key stakeholders such as Jake, the city of Farnsworth, the immediate team assigned to assist with the strategy as well as bankers and client. 

The company holds a patent for this new product “ArticCloth” which will ward off competitors to some extent.  All aspects of the business need to be analyzed to plan and negotiate with current clientele where orders might still be outstanding.  It is very important to save the relationships established which will aid in further growth and development of this landmark company.

The company has been planning an expansion as part of their future strategy.  A review of that strategy is necessary to see what has been implemented or what was on task.  The primary focus here is to not disrupt operations, so as to keep current orders and skilled staffing.  There are several textile companies that fell on hard times in neighboring towns, where the towns are struggling to fill the vacant factories.  We will explore the option of temporarily relocating operations to one of these up and running factories, preferably closest in proximity in consideration of the commute to our current staff.

SWOT Analysis



·  Motivated Leader

·  The success of Family Fabrics sustains the town

·  Family and management is well respected in the town.

·  Success of the new product is at an all-time high as demand  is high

·  Jake is a great Financier

·  Excellent relationship with Bankers & Lenders

·  Product is patented

·  The loss of this business can affect commerce in the town

·  Fierce Competitors

·  Stress of the catastrophe on his workforce

·  Risk losing staff due to the disaster



·  Rebuild with the latest technology and upgrade factory equipment

·  Utilize neighboring town vacant factory

·  Ensure your staff is on the same page to retain talent

·  Outsource some production temporarily

·  Foreign Competition

·  Technological Advancement

·  Competitors will try to develop similar product

Key Stakeholders

The main key stakeholders in this case are:

·  Jacob Farnsworth the head of  “Family Fabrics Corporation”

·  City of Farnsworth, Massachusetts

·  Customers that drives the demand of the product

Jake is the owner of the company for close to three decades and he knows business very well. The company has seen some bad times but Jake has proved himself to be one of the most competent people for running this company and keeping it alive during the tough times of the textile industry.  He is the mastermind behind this recent product that gave the company a big advantage over its competitors.

Second main key stakeholder is the city of Farnsworth, where the company is based. There is a huge demand for the products sold by the company and the company has been the life line for the city, especially since the resurgence of the business is driven by this new product.  Any disruption to the business could mean significant loss of revenue for the city, which would be indirect effect.  The stakeholder has a vested interest in the livelihood of this company and will play a pivotal part in its comeback.  This could be in the form of tax breaks or other incentives, benefiting the company while the rebuild and operate from a temporary location.

The other is the customers that the client served.  The loss of the factory due to the disaster could not have occurred at a worst time.  They are entering into the winter months and a low supply will trigger a high demand of this product.  That is why it is extremely important to find temporary space so that continuation of production can be started. 

Strategic Plan – The Future

A meeting with all the stakeholders is necessary.  This company being a “one of a kind” business in the town as well as the lifeline itself sets him apart and major players would want to be involved to bring this company back on its feet.  Once the team is in place, they can now decide on where they are today in the wake of the disaster as well as where they want to be with the company for the future:

·  Continue with the existing product “ArticCloth”

·  Continue operations in neighboring town and which one is most suited

·  Upgrade of technology and equipment with the rebuild

·  Outsourced temporarily

·  Discontinue some lines and forge ahead with the product driving the resurgence.

Once it is decided how the company will move forward, then the strategy should be formulated and implantation of its goals and future goals be set in place.  Even though this company is face with such a disaster, it should resemble a company taking this as an opportunity to change goals if necessary or to implement new strategies towards the future:

·  Investigate every possibility of continuing market presence through licensing of the patent or outsourcing

·  Take every advantage of the knowledge based displaced workers

·  Focus on responses to treat so as to maintain stance in the market place

·  Advance technologically

For a successful process, they will need to combine elements of the disaster leading to an emergency operation with answering and stepping up to long term strategic prospects.


Hill, C., Jones, G., & Schilling, M. (2015), Strategic Management Theory: An Integrated Approach. Stamford, CT: Cengage Learning.

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