Sample Leadership Studies Paper on Critical Analysis of Leadership and Strategy of KFC Company

Sample Leadership Studies Paper on Critical Analysis of Leadership and Strategy of KFC Company

1.0 Executive Summary

Having the capacity to manage an organization successfully is crucial to achieving the objectives of a business or organization. There are two distinct responsibilities when it comes to management: decision-making and leadership. The first function is responsible for the formulation of organizational objectives, the development of operational strategies, and the planning of the execution process. According to Uddin (2020), leadership is defined as how senior management reacts to changes in the external environment to accomplish organizational objectives. Various factors, including the surrounding environment, will have an impact on whether or not a substantial role will be performed. Kentucky Fried Chicken is a fast-food chain business based in Kentucky in the United States of America (Husna et al., 2020). Despite the fact that the organization started in a humble setting, it has evolved to incorporate multiple branches around the U. S. and even outside of their boundaries. Because of the strong leadership shown by its executives, this organization has achieved success. A significant emphasis of this study will be the principles of leadership that have led to the organizational brilliance of Kentucky Fried Chicken and the role of leadership on decision-making during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

2.0 Introduction

KFC is one of the most well-known and successful fast-food franchises globally. Chicken and other poultry-based dishes are the focus of this section. Various individuals direct several organization divisions, and the organization is split into multiple sections (Husna et al., 2020).  When it comes to picking branch managers, the company’s headquarters is very picky since it is not just anybody who can be a leader in this business. KFC has accepted gender equality across the board. Consequently, the corporation has indeed been able to diversify its staff. Leadership is often a genetic attribute that a small population can only inherit. This is true to some extent but does not discount the potential of persons who were not created leaders becoming successful leaders.

According to Ogdol (2018), the conduct of a leader is essential since it may have an impact on their performance as well as the performance of their subordinates. As with KFC, the branch and department heads at the chain’s restaurants and offices are honest and loyal. This is a critical component of KFC’s business model, given that the company has a proprietary formula that should never be disclosed to the general public. Therefore, if the formula is divulged to a manager who is not committed to this firm, that leader is likely to share it with rivals, resulting in the organization losing many clients. Furthermore, a leader’s conduct should be mirrored in the behavior of their subordinates since one cannot preach water while drinking wine. An effective leader should serve as a role model for their subordinates since this inspires them to respect them.

3.0 Organizational design and structure

KFC’s organizational structure is organized into six tiers, representing a functional area. The organizational hierarchy begins with a management board comprising the president, regional directors, and CFO. The following layers of management to be achieved are the general managers, senior directors, heads of department, team members, and, finally, the workers. The general managers are the first to be reached.

Figure 1: KFC’s organizational structure.

A top-to-bottom instruction and guiding system are completely apparent at KFC, with information being delivered from the head director’s office to the unit director’s office. After that, the personnel would be given the instructions (Panjaitan, 2018). To communicate with their staff, managers use the KFC gateway email, which they then print out as a note and give out or display on the administrative notice board of the KFC store.

When a worker has an issue, their unit manager is notified promptly. Workers’ unions are responsible for providing feedback to the company via teams. To communicate directly with KFC’s chief executive officer, they use the KFC portal email, which can be accessed by all regional directors and is constantly reviewed by the management board. The management board is responsible for the majority of organizational decision-making (Panjaitan, 2018).  The managers and supervisors that meet with the firm’s president make up the corporation’s executive committee. Local employment-related decisions are also delegated to the general manager, who retains complete authority in this regard. Following the KFC unit branches’ activities might also help him resolve branch concerns. The region’s general manager is responsible for a particular number of units. The unit manager is entirely responsible for operating and managing a KFC location. He is assisted by a shift manager and works in a team environment. The general manager is the one who has ultimate authority over them all. Additionally, KFC’s website has a feature that allows customers to provide feedback directly to the company’s unit managers and executives.

4.0 Organizational Culture of KFC

According to Rahman (2019), the organizational culture comprises particular pre-defined policies that serve to guide and steer people and create a feeling of direction to the firm. A complicated system that consists of shared ideas, values, and assumptions that determine the conduct of people inside an organization, organizational culture is defined as follows: KFC’s vision statement is concise and to the point, as is its mission statement. For this reason, the company has avoided presenting its views and positions to the wider populace and other key stakeholders via long speeches or talks. Vision statements should be brief and thorough in helping stakeholders understand the company’s philosophy and business strategy. They should describe the substance of the business and its future goals to convey the essence of the organization.

The KFC has successfully established a reasonable balance between mean and goal alignment. It emphasizes the importance of accomplishing the goals while encouraging workers to take action only if the actions are worthwhile, investing their time and effort in completing (Rahman, 2019).

As a result of concentrating on the average orientation, KFC guarantees that its staff adopts ethical and integrated approaches to achieving its objectives, as the company regards integrity as its basic value (Megawaty, Saeni, and Baottong, 2021).  The option to promote healthy competition is provided to employees so that they are only supporting competitiveness. Moreover, employees at KFC are urged to put out their utmost effort to meet the goals they have been assigned. Workers are not punished for new ideas or for taking a leap of faith. KFC has indeed been able to successfully lessen failure-related stress in its workforce by using this strategy.

When it comes to responding promptly to customer requests, the company’s senior management is devoted, but they also openly advocate the need to retain an ethical perspective. Integrity and honesty are woven into every part of the company’s operations (Megawaty, Saeni, and Baottong, 2021). An integral and consistent corporate culture has allowed the company to capitalize on its morally sound corporate image as nothing more than a competitive edge over its rivals.

An examination of KFC’s organizational culture has shown that a rigorous work culture defined as a hierarchy structure and a comprehensive level is more commonly connected. It shows that the management keeps control over decision-making and exerts direct control over the behavior of the personnel at all times (Husna et al., 2020).   Incentives of many kinds, including monetary and non-monetary ones, are used to promote employees’ innovative and creative work habits, but the inclination of companies to impose rigid work rules limits their freedom and agency.

However, management has opted to gradually move away from a hierarchical to a wide range of institutions over the coming years in response to the rising desire for independence and empowerment among employees. Organizational power is being delegated from the top-down as a consequence of these changes, and a new equilibrium between rigidity and fluidity is being achieved. The company promotes a professional work ethic among its employees—no need to behave in a certain way. Individual variations are embraced at KFC, where variety is acknowledged and promoted (Husna et al., 2020).   Make use of the opportunities offered by constructive disagreement. It is vital to maintain a professional culture in a wide-ranging company environment, such as KFC’s.

KFC’s corporate culture reveals that the company prefers the liberal side of life. It’s not uncommon for KFC to have open lines of communication and a culture that’s both adaptive and diverse. KFC’s ability to manage an extensive and varied workforce is another competitive edge. KFC has used its varied workforce’s unique talents, abilities, and experiences thanks to an inclusive organizational structure (Megawaty, Saeni, and Baottong, 2021). When it comes to adapting quickly to customers’ needs in different parts of the world, worldwide firms like KFC place great importance on these two attributes.

5.0 Leadership Strategies Employed in KFC

5.1 Cost leadership Strategy

Using an integrated low-cost/differentiation approach, KFC is able to differentiate itself from the competition while still engaging on value to the economies of scale it has achieved by using its brand image, original taste, and recipes (Omer, 2018). This approach aims to gain a competitive advantage by reducing the cost of products and services. KFC’s primary generic strategy in different consumer sectors is maintaining a low price advantage over competitors.

5.1.1 When and how KFC employs a cost-cutting approach

Sustaining the corporation’s market-leading position via efficient value chain management is a significant objective of this strategy (Omer, 2018). Affluent consumers, who make for the majority in most countries’ capita consumable market mix in terms of market share, are KFC’s target audience. Cost leadership appears to be the most successful strategy for satisfying the needs of middle-class clients, who place a premium on pricing.

As per Wamalwa (2018), high brand awareness, sales volumes, and a solid competitive advantage resulted from KFC’s focus on its products’ affordability and ease of availability. To reach sales targets and cope with the rivalry from its closest competitor, KFC constantly offers discounts and coupons while maintaining cheap pricing by reducing production costs and improving supply chain efficiency. Customers will be more likely to purchase the brand’s items due to these advertising efforts.

KFC’s general cost leadership strategy has several benefits when developing brand recognition, expanding customer base, increasing consumption, and reaching sales targets (Wamalwa 2018).  KFC However, to maintain its competitive advantage, KFC also utilizes a strategy of differentiation is due to cost leadership, which is getting more crowded in the fiercely competitive environment consumer market.

5.2 Differentiation Strategy as utilized in KFC

Another common strategy for establishing a competitive edge is differentiation. KFC’s management uses differentiation and cost leadership to achieve its growth goals.

5.2.1 When and how KFC employs its differentiation strategy

KFC’s management strategy goal in using this technique is to differentiate itself from competitors by introducing innovation and addressing the growing health concerns of consumers. For instance, KFC has increased its product selection due to closely monitoring evolving customer satisfaction to differentiate itself from competitors and widen the reach of potential customers inside the company (Omer, 2018). Because of the combination of uniqueness and price leadership, KFC has been able to build an extensive and devoted customer base.

KFC management frames their product offerings in a way that makes them special out and distinguishes them from the competition by employing a generic differentiation method to differentiate them (Omer, 2018).  To reduce the strain imposed by rival brands on the company’s well-established brand and strong market position, it adopts uniqueness as a marketing approach. Investing heavily in advertising, advertising, and celebrity endorsements, KFC exists exclusively for the goal of differentiating itself from competitors in the food industry.

6.0 Influence of KFC Leadership on Decision-Making during the Covid-19 Epidemic

As the Covid-19 epidemic has swept the whole globe by storm, companies have been forced to respond with lightning-fast response times. There is no exception in the case of the fast-food restaurant brand KFC. After closing its take-out and dine-in outlets throughout the majority of the Gulf Region and the rest of the world, KFC must educate and encourage consumers that they can make orders safely and successfully on the KFC website (Motoc, 2020).  KFC introduced a new contactless shipping service in a short period to respond to increasing social distancing habits and guarantee that its customers were comfortable placing their orders. It was a passionate plea from the company, urging people to remain at home and be safe. KFC made advantage of Facebook’s Dynamic Ads’ powerful targeting capabilities to keep its brand front and center in customers’ thoughts until it reopens its doors and welcomes everyone back.

6.1 Safety First

A new contactless delivery system was introduced by KFC immediately after learning of the threat of coronavirus in the Middle East, as well as a broad range of additional cleanliness and safety measures, all of which were based on KFC’s global KFC network. Contactless delivery was used by KFC even before social distance became the norm so that customers could purchase with complete confidence (Motoc, 2020).  Customers may enjoy their meal in the knowledge that they are contributing to their safety and surroundings thanks to the contactless delivery system, which completely removes the necessity of person-to-person interaction between the delivery driver and the client.

When the restaurant initially began providing its contactless service, many customers were unsure about what they were getting themselves into. In the case of those who are used to human connection, having their meal left for them might seem a bit impersonal. According to the company, when individuals realized why KFC was introducing the technique, their reaction was extremely favorable (White, Nieto, and Barquera, 2020). The clarity in communication is vital to KFC, which believes that you should inform people what to anticipate and, more significantly, why you are doing what you are doing. If you concentrate on establishing trust, you will reap the benefits.

6.2 Spreading the Word

The Kentucky Fried Chicken Company (KFC) used data-driven marketing to engage customers and encourage them to buy food online to assist alleviates the effect of shop closures. In collaboration with its marketing firm Hearts & Science, the company took use of Facebook’s Dynamic Ads offering to customize content depending on the interests and characteristics of each consumer. According to the company, the delivery of messaging was based on indications relevant to user behavior on KFC’s website (White, Nieto, and Barquera, 2020).  KFC’s e-commerce investments became more effective due to the increased efficiency, with the product’s cost per order reducing by 90 percent, resulting in significant cost savings for the firm due to the increased efficiency.

7.0 Conclusion

Instead of pursuing an excessive cultural orientation, successful organizations attempt to find the right balance in order to create an influential culture. This is what KFC’s corporate culture study demonstrates. Since its inception, Kentucky Fried Chicken has cultivated a solid corporate culture that is well-received by its diverse workforce. Organizational culture may be utilized to achieve strategic objectives if a company can combine its structures, culture, and business strategy effectively and comprehend the complex link between underlying assumptions, core values, and observable behaviors. The KFC Corporation is excellent work culture and has maintained its position in a highly competitive market.




8.0 References

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Husna, N., Kee, D.M.H., Amirah, N.W., Syazreeza, R., Fatihah, N.A., Pandey, S., Agnihotri, S. and Pandey, R., 2020. How organizational management affect employees’ motivation and service quality: A study of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC). International Journal of Applied Business and International Management (IJABIM)5(2), pp.73-81..

Megawaty, M., Saeni, N. and Baottong, M.H., 2021. Organizational Culture and Leadership Style against Employee Perfor-mance. Point Of View Research Management2(1), pp.59-65.

Motoc, A., 2020. Crisis management and resilience for restaurants in Romania during the COVID-19 pandemic. Management Dynamics in the Knowledge Economy8(4), pp.435-449.

OGDOL, R.E.R., 2018. IMPACT OF LEADERSHIP STYLES ON EMPLOYEE JOB SATISFACTION WITHIN QUICK SERVICE RESTAURANTS (QSRs) in the UAE (Doctoral dissertation, Cardiff Metropolitan University, United Kingdom).

Omer, S.K., 2018. SWOT ANALYSIS; THE TOOL OF ORGANIZATIONS STABILITY (KFC) AS A CASE STUDY. Journal of Process Management. New Technologies6(4).


Rahman, M.M., 2019. Cultural Differences, Strengths, Weaknesses and Challenges of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC)–A Comparison between and United Kingdom (UK) Malaysia. Global Journal of Management And Business Research.

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Uddin, S.M., 2020. Operational strategies and management of KFC: An enquiry. EPRA International Journal of Research and Development (IJRD)5(4), pp.172-179.

Wamalwa, C.N., 2018. Franchising as an Operational Strategy by Java Restaurants Within Nairobi City County (Doctoral dissertation, University of Nairobi).

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