2.1 Stakeholder Analysis
Different from the stockholder theory, stakeholder theory tends to include any individual or group which can affect or be affected by the activities of that particular group (Freeman, 1984). With stakeholder analysis of the Pearson Australia, an investigation of the stakeholders enables policymakers or managers to have a clear understanding these stakeholders and interact with them effectively. In each of the category, the stakeholders can be further divided to a more specific group so as to find appropriate strategy for them. Moreover, the homogenous group can help managers to exchange information more efficiently. In this report, four types of stakeholders called the linkage model are listed below in details according to the analysis of the Pearson Australia developed by Grunig and Hunt (1984).
2.1.1 Enabling Linkages
Enabling linkages are stakeholders who exert some control and authority on a company. In Pearson Australia, stockholders, board of directors, government and policy makers can fall in this category. This group is crucial in the operations of a company for the ability and authority to formulate strategies and relocate its resources.
Stockholders: Pearson is a listed company with Pearson Australia a subsidiary to it. Therefore, it is the responsibility of Pearson Australia to make as profits for itself and for its shareholders. At the same time, the strategy execution and operation business can sometimes be affected by the vote of these stockholders or influenced by their attitudes towards it.
Board of directors: in 2010, Pearson Australia has been merged into a bigger company to form the Pearson Asia Pacific. With the efforts of the management team, especially under the leadership of David Barnett, the CEO of Pearson Australia, the mission and goal of the company has been outlined and according strategies and plans has also been made for the better development in the Australian market.
Government and policy makers: Government policy can have a great influence on the strategy making process of a company. For example, a good relationship with the department of education and the Australian Publisher Association can bring benefits to the company in compliance with the regulations and allocation of the resources to their best.
2.1.2 Functional Linkages
Functional linkages are further divided into input functions that provide labor or resources to serve the company and output functions that purchase the products.
Customers: Any kind of business is targeted with a certain kind of consumers. Within the business of Pearson Australia, students, teachers and the learning institutions are its main customers. Whether its books and learning tools are popular and useful to these customers can play a pivotal role in the business performance of the company. In turn, these educational products can have huge impacts on the learning process of the students and teachers, teaching style of the learning institutions.
Employees: Without its working crew, no product can be efficiently designed, produced and targeted to the target market. Employees working at Information Technology, Management or any other department devote their time and energy for the better development of the company. Reciprocally, excellent performance in the education market brings its employees more bonuses and opportunities.
Partners: In Pearson Australia, it chooses many partners to work with for relocating these resources for their best utilization. Authors are one of the most important partners for their great contributions to the books published and other on-line activities. Booksellers acts like a distributor to help the selling of these books. Various kinds of school, colleges and universities are also crucial participants in cooperation with Pearson Australia in order to provide the best education for the students. At the same time, these well-designed books or research tools can make the learning process easier and more efficient.
2.1.3 Normative Linkages
Normative linkages identify those who have a similar interest, values in the same business. In this category, competitors of Pearson Australia are mainly concerned.
Competitors: As one of the largest education publishing in the world, Pearson Education is confronted with fierce competitions from its competitors. The market share, the influence over the consumers and the general public can all have huge impact of the strategic management of Pearson Australia. For instance, Macmillan Publisher Australia and McGraw Hill Education (Australia and New Zealand) are considered as its competitors with their sharing target market in the education publishing and learning. It is suggested to quick reacted to their strategies to remain the market share and attract more potential consumers.
2.1.4 Diffused Linkages
Diffused linkages are often described as those who do not have direct exchanges with the company, but are indirectly affected by the company.
Local communities: The local communities mainly refer to any community involving in the education activities in Australia. As a forerunner in education publishing, testing and on-line leaning, its influences go far beyond the consumers who purchase its products. It aims to educate people, deliver knowledge to the public and keep the society informed and prosperous. As it is agreed by the supporters of stakeholder theory, one company should not only pursue the benefits for itself and its shareholders, but also take social responsibilities. In this way can the one be a both commercially successful and public trusted company. Concerned with education, it is the duty of Pearson Australia in contributing its resources to serve local communities in Australia. The Smith Family which is developed to help these disabled children to be educated and the Indigenous Literacy Project launched to help the remote and minority communities are what Pearson Australia has always been trying to do to make the society more educated.
Media: in a traditional sense, the media has little interactions with one company. However, in a consumer-oriented era, a good relationship with the media makes a difference in its business. To make it more general, public relations are of growing concern to the general public. For Pearson Australia, the hold of various kinds of competitions, the utilization of social media and videos are all effective media strategy for a better representation of its brand and image.
By and large, there are a wide range of stakeholders for Pearson Australia. Identification and segmentation with these stakeholders can be beneficial to the company. Besides, missions and strategic plans can be developed on the basis of stakeholder analysis.