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Article

Ian M. Taplin

The US apparel industry continues to be a large, mature industry that is intensely competitive. It is also highly fragmented and is undergoing restructuring and…

Abstract

The US apparel industry continues to be a large, mature industry that is intensely competitive. It is also highly fragmented and is undergoing restructuring and operational changes that further accentuate past trends. The principal drivers of change continue to be the increasing levels of low‐cost imports, but also include dramatic changes in retailing following consolidation of the retail sector, new technology, changing work habits and demographic changes (principally the ageing of the baby boomers). In addition, trade and tax legislation that confers special status on firms operating in certain Caribbean countries has resulted in the growth of outward processing that in turn has led to further domestic firm operational restructuring.

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management: An International Journal, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

Keywords

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Article

Ian M. Taplin

This paper aims to examine the purposive strategy behind the growth of cult wines in Napa California since the 1980s. By leveraging the growing wine reputation of the…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the purposive strategy behind the growth of cult wines in Napa California since the 1980s. By leveraging the growing wine reputation of the region, a small number of new owners used extensive financial resources from other ventures to make a finely crafted, high-priced wine, in small quantities and sold through restricted distribution channels. Their aim was to compete with Bordeaux first-growths and create wine that would evoke the luxury connotations of craft, heritage, reputation and exclusivity. Because they were new, they relied upon experts to rate their wine, thus creating instant legitimacy with high scores and appealing to a small group of wealthy wine enthusiasts, many of whom were insecure in their knowledge of high-quality wines.

Design/methodology/approach

Semi-structured in-depth interviews with a sample of 13 cult winery owners, wine makers and a CEO were utilized in addition to descriptive statistics and secondary historical information drawn from public records.

Findings

Certain Napa producers have created iconic wines through purposeful behavior and extensive resources that are rare and difficult to imitate. Their success is also a function of positive accolades by influential wine critics whose scoring sanctioned their status as a luxury good. High prices and limited availability further manufactured the scarcity element that is crucial to maintaining demand for high-status goods.

Originality/value

This study examines the interface between supply of a product, external validation that legitimized it and a small but significant market of wealthy individuals who created the demand for it. This mosaic behind market creation reveals how successful producers have been in realizing the multidimensionality of luxury goods.

Details

International Journal of Wine Business Research, vol. 28 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1751-1062

Keywords

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Article

Ian M. Taplin

To examine how the textile and clothing industries, both of which retain a significant employment presence in the EU, have responded differently to heightened overseas…

Abstract

Purpose

To examine how the textile and clothing industries, both of which retain a significant employment presence in the EU, have responded differently to heightened overseas competition and changes in buyer‐supplier relations.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses macro‐descriptive statistics to determine key EU industry trends and provide an analysis of how institutional backgrounds can shape industry trends.

Findings

Clothing proves more robust in retaining an employment presence than the more capital‐intensive textile sector. This is surprising since labour‐intensive industries are expected to suffer more from intensified global competition than capital intensive ones. Job losses continue in both sectors but firms are innovating in restructuring practices to remain competitive and responsive to buyer pressures. Technological innovation and the pursuit of niche markets plus increased outsourcing are key responses.

Research limitations/implications

Few studies offer an overview of industry trends and whilst this study offers a comparative, mainly cross‐sectional analysis, it nonetheless provides a context for more detailed country‐specific analyses.

Originality/value

The paper provides useful data of relevance to public policy specialists, managers in this and related industries, plus academics studying industrial restructuring and responses to heightened competitive pressures throughout the value chain in a labour‐intensive industry.

Details

European Business Review, vol. 18 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0955-534X

Keywords

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Article

Ian M. Taplin and Jonathan Winterton

This paper examines earlier and more recent patterns of restructuring that have occurred as a consequence of import penetration. It focuses upon work reorganization, job…

Abstract

This paper examines earlier and more recent patterns of restructuring that have occurred as a consequence of import penetration. It focuses upon work reorganization, job losses and changes in the retail‐manufacturer relationships and how these trends differ in key European countries. Finally, it asks questions about future trends, both in employment (and the changing nature of jobs) as well as government policies towards the politics of trade.

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management: An International Journal, vol. 8 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

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Article

Ian M. Taplin and Jonathan Winterton

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role that management style plays in retaining workers in a high labour turnover industry.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine the role that management style plays in retaining workers in a high labour turnover industry.

Design/methodology/approach

Case study approach based upon extensive interviews with workers and managers derived from industry wide data set.

Findings

Positive actions by management promote worker attachment to leaders and the organization and are crucial in sustaining work values that diminish the likelihood of turnover.

Practical implications

Management style is a variable that is often overlooked in shaping worker attitudes and is crucial to understanding why workers stay in these firms.

Originality/value

Whereas most studies of turnover focus upon individual attributes, we examine the structural characteristics of the workplace that permit workers of different ages and skill sets to maximise their efficiency and earnings and the role played by management style in decisively shaping that structure.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 27 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

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Article

Ian M. Taplin

This paper seeks to examine the various actors responsible for the recent tragedy at a clothing factory in Bangladesh. Rather than focusing on the actual factory owner, it…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to examine the various actors responsible for the recent tragedy at a clothing factory in Bangladesh. Rather than focusing on the actual factory owner, it evaluates the broader structural and institutional factors, plus a particular Western retailer strategy of fast fashion, that together explain the practical inevitability of such tragedies.

Design/methodology/approach

As a case study of a particular incident, it presents data from newspaper accounts and descriptive statistics to evaluate the broader context of an industrial accident.

Findings

By examining the full context of the incident, it becomes apparent that there were systemic issues that effectively encouraged many parties to engage in workplace policies that almost inevitably can lead to accidents or at least labor abuses. Finally, blame is apportioned to Western consumers whose insatiable appetite for “fashionable” goods merely feeds a retail system that was set up to resolve earlier supply chain problems and ended up taking advantage of changing international trade regimes.

Originality/value

The paper takes a much broader examination and analysis of institutional factors that shape work conditions than studies that focus merely on labor-management issues.

Details

critical perspectives on international business, vol. 10 no. 1/2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1742-2043

Keywords

Abstract

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management: An International Journal, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

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Article

G. Page West III and Ian M Taplin

Most research on new organizations drawing on resource-based theory examines firms in discrete development stages with resources that already exist. The purpose of this…

Abstract

Purpose

Most research on new organizations drawing on resource-based theory examines firms in discrete development stages with resources that already exist. The purpose of this paper is to articulate a broader view of changing resource requirements over the life of new organizations. The authors propose four phases of resources development, arguing that new resources and capabilities must develop as new strategic challenges emerge. The paper identifies salient resources in these phases and finds that internal resource development is context dependent, interacting with the external stage of industry development.

Design/methodology/approach

After developing the theoretical model, the authors use an exploratory qualitative study involving extensive case studies of new ventures in the wine industry. Key personnel at a sample of firms were interviewed, supplemented with secondary data from published reports.

Findings

The paper finds that a linear stage development model for new organizational ventures is inappropriate. The various combinations of early/later new ventures in a formative/developed industry suggest that some may proceed rapidly in a linear fashion through phases of development, while others may find progress slow, difficult, stalled or occasionally regressive. A combination of resources developed simultaneously in a non-linear pattern appears to be critical to the success of new ventures. In other words, combinations must evolve as the strategic challenges evolve, thus bringing an important contextual view to the examination of dynamic resource development efforts for new organizations. Attempts to focus in a piecemeal fashion on individual aspects of resource development, without accounting for resource interactions at a systemic level or the nature of the strategic demands, is likely to leave researchers and practitioners with incomplete insights.

Originality/value

Existing studies have failed to grasp the dynamic and interactive process of resource development as organizations evolve in a new industry setting. The model presented in this paper provides a heuristic device for conceptualizing these changes.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

Keywords

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Article

R. Saylor Breckenridge and Ian M. Taplin

This paper sets out to review the sociological perspective on the changing role of managers in US corporations following the demise of Fordist hierarchies.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper sets out to review the sociological perspective on the changing role of managers in US corporations following the demise of Fordist hierarchies.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper reviews literature on how changing managerial prerogatives altered the control of the workplace, and provides a theoretically informed assessment of the current impasse.

Findings

The post‐Second World War decades saw sustained economic growth that was predicated on an employment relationship in which managers and workers had relatively secure career ladders within firms and were provided with regular pay increases. The changing competitive environment in the 1980s altered this relationship: traditional hierarchical structures were increasingly subject to internal market forces, and organizations supplanted and supplemented their operations with network forms.

Originality/value

The paper shows how workplace changes increased insecurity for managers by questioning the traditional operation of that role within organizations; though simultaneously, these changes served to enhance features of overall organizational efficiency and equalize opportunity for career advancement.

Details

Journal of Business & Industrial Marketing, vol. 24 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0885-8624

Keywords

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Article

Ian M. Taplin

This paper examines how Western management techniques have been introduced by a new owner to implement strategic initiatives in a newly privatized clothing firm in…

Abstract

This paper examines how Western management techniques have been introduced by a new owner to implement strategic initiatives in a newly privatized clothing firm in Hungary. In an attempt to reposition the firm in a higher value‐added niche and avoid the intense competition of a cost‐based competitive strategy, the foreign owner has introduced Western management techniques that focus upon changes in work organization and work monitoring. Detailing how such changes are implemented and the problems that emerge, are the focus of this paper. The paper concludes with a critical evaluation of the failed attempt by the firm to reposition itself strategically and what this might portend for other firms that seek respite from cost‐based competitive strategies.

Details

Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management: An International Journal, vol. 6 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1361-2026

Keywords

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