Page 1: Introduction
A successful business understands its market and how best to differentiate its product so as to appeal to its target audience. It also knows how to recruit, train, develop, retain and motivate its employees. This case study looks at a company that is achieving all these goals.
J D Wetherspoon owns and operates pubs across the UK and is the UK’s fastest-growing company (shown on a recent business survey, 2001). It provides customers with good-quality food and drink at reasonable prices, served by well-trained, friendly staff. Many of the company’s pubs are successful conversions of formerly disused premises. Each has its own individual character but has the same high standards to meet.
A distinguishing feature of Wetherspoon pubs is that they are music-free so as to encourage conversation. All have substantial no-smoking areas. Meals are served from opening until one hour before closing and account for over 25% of sales. They also specialise in the sale of cask-conditioned beers from Britain’s regional brewers.
In modern service industries, friendly, motivated employees who are willing and able to provide the required level of customer service can make all the difference between success and failure. J D Wetherspoon has 11,200 either full or part-time employees, of which 220 are at the Head Office in Watford. The company is convinced that the high performance of its staff is a direct result of its approach to staff recruitment, training, development and motivation. This case study looks at how the company motivates staff towards helping it achieve its aims of high standards, ongoing improvement and growth.