Monday, June 10, 2019

Sprint Corporation Business Strategy Case Study

The company that I currently work for is Sprint and have chosen Sprint as the topic of this discussion. “Sprint Corporation, together with its subsidiaries, provides various wireless and wireline communications products and services to consumers, businesses, government subscribers, and resellers in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the United States Virgin Islands” (Yahoo Finance, 2019). I work for the wireless division, which is the larger of the two divisions at Sprint.
Mission
The mission for Sprint as stated by their website is, “We help people get better every day. We believe mobile connectivity is the most powerful enabler of progress in the world today. Connectivity helps bring families and friends more closely together, children to get a better education and businesses to be more productive. At Sprint, we help our customers make these connections, allowing them to do more, strive for more and enjoy life to the fullest” (Sprint.com/about-us, 2019). Comparing the Sprint mission statement to table 2.1 in Crafting & Executing Strategy: The Quest for Competitive Advantage: Concepts and Cases, it can be seen that the mission statement does paint a picture of what the company is looking to accomplish, however it does not stake out the strategic course that it will take to “help people get better everyday” The vision statement for Sprint is provided in a bullet point fashion on the website.
    1. Sprint has defied the odds and executed one of America’s most iconic turnarounds.
    2. Consumers recommend Sprint as the best mobile platform in America.
    3. Sprint is recognized as a trusted, worry-free provider of high-quality products and services that consumers demand in a connected world.
    4. Sprint is recognized as one of the top places to work.
Vision
The vision statement follows table 2.1 slightly. The vision statement does not paint a picture of where the company is headed at all but does keep the statement focused. In the short 4 bullet item vision statement, Sprint is reflecting more on what it is and what it has done rather than provide a path or any other indicators of where the company is headed. Their vision statement is not memorable.
Strategy
Also listed on the Sprint website is their Strategy. Their strategy is tag-lined with “Fueled by Continuous Transformation”, which is a much more memorable statement than both the mission and vision statement.  Sprint’s strategy covers both the financial and the strategic objectives very nicely. The Strategic is “Creating an Amazing Customer Experience” which will be done through the Next Gen Network, and Compelling Unlimited Value Proposition. The financials will be achieved by: Smart Distribution and Engaged Partners. This is depicted on the website in a nice graphic that has the customer at the center. Looking at the graphic it is very clear how Sprint’s strategy will work and how one area feeds the others – making the Continuous Transformation. The company strategy is broken down in to these bullet points.
  1. Next Gen Network (Strategic)
  2. Compelling Unlimited Value Proposition (Strategic)
  3. Smart Distribution (Financial)
  4. Engaged Partners (Financial)
Sprint is also touting their Transformation – “Sprint Now is our five-year plan to transform and turn around our company. It’s the combination of the mission that unites us, the vision of what we aspire to be and the values that guide how we work. It’s the clear strategy, our plan and the goals that align each member of our team” (Sprint.com, 2019) This statement provides a summary of what is communicated in the Mission, Vision, Value and Strategy Statements. The summary statement does a better job at communicating where the company is headed than the mission, vision or value statements provide.
Value Statement
Sprint provides the following value statement: “Sprint’s Values are the behaviors that we expect from each other at Sprint. How we work together, serve customers and help people get better every day” (Sprint.com, 2019). They then list the core values that the company is guided by: Believe, Obsess, Excel, Win, Sprint, Focus, Respect.  Values are certain beliefs, traits, and behavioral norms that management has determined should guide the pursuit of its vision and mission. (Thompson, 2018) Sprint provides these guiding values, but does not support them in the mission nor in the vision statements.
Differentiator
Sprint touts its wireless network as being the differentiation among its competitors. By continuously improving and investing in the network, Sprint will set itself apart from their competition. The current competitive advantage that Sprint has is spectrum. “With its Next-Gen Network investment, Sprint is unlocking the power of its spectrum assets to improve coverage, reliability and speed across its nationwide network and launch its mobile 5G network in nine top U.S. markets in the first half of 2019” (Sprint.com, 2019). The more spectrum a wireless carrier owns, the more coverage they can offer and the more capacity the network has it will provide better call quality, enhanced video offerings and more advanced handsets and other data intensive mobile devices. As part of hyping their network, Sprint offers a Unlimited Premium plan to its customers. This plan takes advantage of the spectrum that Sprint owns by providing content rich features in the Premium plan. “Unlimited Premium includes Amazon Prime, Hulu, TIDAL, Lookout Premium Plus, a limited-time offer of $20 per month of Uber rides, plus 50GB LTE mobile hotspot for $90 per month” (“Sprint Introduces Ultimate, Feature Rich, Unlimited Premium”, August 31, 2018). This offering, while not for everyone, gives customers the option to take advantage of all that Sprint has to offer.
Conclusion
 Sprint is in the middle of a 5-year plan to turn around the company from hefty losses in both revenue and consumers. The results midway through the transformation are positive and if the trends continue, Sprint will continue to cut costs and add revenue. The mission, vision and value statements that Sprint currently have do not defined their strategic objectives nor their path to get there. The most descriptive view of where Sprint is headed is in their statement of Strategy. While not clearly defined on how they will meet their objectives, the strategy sets out what key components they will use to achieve their goals.

Thanks,
AL
References:
Sprint Introduces Ultimate, Feature Rich, Unlimited Premium. (2018, August 31). Retrieved from https://www.marketwatch.com/press-release/sprint-introduces-ultimate-feature-rich-unlimited-premium-2018-08-31
S : Summary for Sprint Corporation. (2019, March 05). Retrieved from https://finance.yahoo.com/quote/S?p=S
Sprint Next-Gen Network and 5G News. (n.d.). Retrieved March 4, 2019, from https://newsroom.sprint.com/about-us/network-news/

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