Solution posted in response to Eco-Certification Challenge
Grand Cru Eco Certification Summary
The primary goal of this project was to provide the company with the tools needed in the certification process with Sustainable Travel International (STI). Initial required criteria was set forth by STI and Grand Cru needed to show evidence that these criteria could be met. The project team first examined all required elements and gave recommendations on how to meet each requirement. This was used to record baseline performance for a later evaluation by STI one year into the certification process. The required criteria were categorized into 8 distinct areas of focus for evaluation which are: business model, guest experience, workplace practices, operations, purchasing, energy and climate, ecosystem preservation, and community impacts. The PSU team created evaluation tools to help Grand Cru measure and document each of the required criteria. Recommendations were made for each component in order to maximize the point value awarded by STI. Additionally the PSU team looked at optional criteria set forth by STI that Grand Cru could possibly achieve. All of the optional criteria were evaluated and the team provided Grand Cru with a prioritized set of recommendations based on cost, time, and effort in order to maximize points and achieve a higher eco-certification star rating.
The secondary goal was to provide a marketing plan and direction. In their marketing, Grand Cru needs to be further differentiated from the competition by focusing on sharing their sustainable mission. By building their brand, guests on their wine tours can feel good about their choice of wine tour company. Grand Cruâ€™s competitive advantage is that they are local, knowledgeable, and sustainable. Grand Cru should focus on both referral marketing, such as networking groups and strategic partnerships with likeminded businesses, and promotional events in the local Salem area. They will be well situated to leverage their STI certification and position in the market place as the first and only certified wine tour company in Oregon.