Interior Craftsmanship Inc.: Redirecting a Small Business for a New Generation

Interior Craftsmanship Inc.: Redirecting a Small Business for a New Generation

  • Case
  • Teaching Notes
Abstract

This case describes the results of a 2016 on-site study of a stagnant family-owned furniture and upholstery company in northern New Jersey. Information is also gleaned from widely available sources that discuss the furniture repair, restoration, and reupholstery industry. The case invites students to view this company and its industry through the lens of a young protagonist poised to take over the business from his parents. Both internal and external business forces such as human capital, the economic environment, business-to-consumer and business-to-business customer acquisition, and technology are discussed. Students are asked to put themselves in the protagonist's shoes in order to identify these areas, make inferences about their effects on the business, and draw conclusions that will address each of the major influencing factors. The goal is to demonstrate how a stagnant small business in an industry with challenges can reposition and flourish through diversification and technology.

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