Timberland Jason Patterson
Responsible Corporate Leadership
Professor David Shirley
October 23, 2011
Timberland: Commerce and Justice Case Study Analysis
The Timberland case study documents the company’s path towards incorporating service to community into their business strategy and overall infrastructure. Under the leadership and vision of Jeff Schwartz, Timberland began this undertaking almost immediately after the company went public in 1987.
Using “doing well and doing good” as a mantra for their dual commitment to the enrichment of business and community, Timberland forged relationships with regional based organizations like City Year and Skills USA. With these ...view middle of the document...
In the midst of their financial crisis, rumors regarding a hostile take over and a possible acquisition by Nike or Reebok surfaced. In addition, sources within the company questioned the company’s continued commitment to company wide service, despite financial issues. Timberland soon recovered to eventually report steady revenue growth, while not compromising service principles.
Strengths | Weaknesses |
* Established relationships with NGO’s * Transparency in reporting * Service to community and environment established as part of Timberland’s operating infrastructure * Ability to recover amid financial crisis * 4 Core values to guide company behavior and decision making * Global labor standards | * Management of product expansion * Slow progress to expand environmental protection policy |
Opportunities | Threats |
* Establish brand and social mission internationally * Increase diversity and team building initiatives/base * Increase business and social practice synergy * Direct sales from strategic partnership events | * Apprehensive of employees regarding expanding scope of CS mission * Thinning sales and declining profit margins * Slow acceptance of social mission internationally * Difficulty upholding company labor and environmental practices globally * Non-strategic partnerships |
What is Timberland doing right?
1. Value Creation/Establishment of Double Bottom Line – Timberland has made it an operating principle to maximize returns to investors and stakeholders. Whether the tactic is a strategic partnership with an NGO or working to effect progressive labor and environmental practices, Timberland has attained blended value wherein which social value creation is incorporated into all company decisions and not considered a separate entity(4).
2. Green Index/Company wide communication of green ideals – An estimated 96% of Timberland’s carbon footprint comes from businesses it doesn’t own (sub-contracts) (6). Through Timberland’s Green Index, the company has developed a carbon toolkit and carbon management expectations. Timberland’s goal in this initiative is to measure life cycle climate impact of its products while assisting product designers/developers and consumers with information that will assist them in making more informed decisions that lead to lower carbon emissions.
What can Timberland do to improve?
1. Establish community service principle amongst international constituents – As noted in the case study, international commitment to the...