CIMA: Action…Resources…ObjectiveJ&S: Direction & scope…long-term advantage…resources…change…markets…stakeholders…No single definition of strategy, and no single answer. Makes subject both exciting and frustrating. 2 people looking at the same information can legitimately draw 2 separate conclusions on what the strategy should be. And that’s ok. At least for the exam!
1. Where are we now?Analysis of External and Internal Environments2. Where do we want to be?Mission statement, Objectives, Creating sustainable advantage3. How are we going to get there?If there is a gap between 1 and 2, what long term actions are we going to take
1. Where are you now?Completed Organizational (E1) and Managerial levels (E2), gaining select knowledge and skills2. Where do you want to be?In 6 months, get at least 50+ marks on the E3 Exam!3. How are you going to get there?Close knowledge and skill gapUnderstand the requirements for E3Move from theory to APPLICATION - What actions should a company take in a given scenario?
KNOWLEDGE: you simple have to know (facts/theories/techniques)COMPREHENSION:you got to understand(history/background/strengths/ weaknesses/links between topics)APPLICATION:you have to be able to do it(apply knowledge into different contexts)
Suitability Acceptability Feasibility
CIMA has a program, and you need to get with the program!Verbs have specific meanings and expectations in terms of what you are supposed to do.How do we know this? Easy, check the exam papers…
Not one question started with a knowledge verb – List, state, defineSome Comprehension verbs, some Application verbs…Almost a quarter of the marks are at the Analysis level – Analyze, Discuss, Construct…But pretty much the bulk of the marks are associated with Evaluation verbs – Advise, Evaluate, RecommendBiggest takeaway – you will not get your 50 marks even if you nail levels 1-4. We need to transition to Level 5 in this course!
Starts with an Explain, then moves to Discuss.Then a jump to Advise (and see the jump in marks that go with it!).But the Advise has some components – an evaluation…that is split into calculations and commentary.And finally, a Recommend.You see how this works?!
A quick look at the syllabus – four sections.Percentages are guidelines as to how much of the syllabus is in each section, and perhaps, how much of the exam comes from each section. Not quite correct (based on my review of past papers), but close enough.Competitive Environment – External factors and information systemsChange management – key section. Usually, managing some aspect of change is what is asked for between the pre-seen and un-seen parts of the case.Generating strategic options (and the associated tools) is a chunk of the syllabus, and finally, implementation and measurement caps off the syllabus requirement. We will go into each of these in detail as we cover them. What’s key to note is what sections are new for the E3 syllabus? If it’s new, it’s got to be important.
CSR, process of strategy formulation, and organizational structures are at the Learning Outcomes level. High probability they will be tested.Others are new topics of interest, and could show up – impact of the internet, ethics. CIMA has an 81-page code of conduct. Don’t need to know it all, but the summary of the code will be critical.On a recent paper, the management accountant was put in a dilemma – director operations wanted him to endorse hios projections for growth in Asia, hinting he might lose his job if he doesn’t. Question was around how should he handle the situation…
Before exam (using pre-seen material)•Analyse context of case, i.e. what is its industry, organisation?•Analyse current position of case organisation•Identify and analyse issues facing case organisationDuring exam (using unseen material):Analyse current position of case organisation now by:Identifying and analysing new information, then:Addressing the questions
Students missing/mis-reading key words in the question.Seeing a word and jumping to an answer – “manage” and stakeholders” doesn’t mean undertaking a Mendelow stakeholder analysis.
Enterprise Strategy/AW/00 Arj Wignaraja
CIMA Definition: ◦ A course of action including the specification of resources required to achieve a specific objective. CIMA: Management Accounting: Official Terminology 2005 edition, p54 Johnson & Scholes: ◦ “Direction and scope of an organization over the long term which achieves advantages through its configuration of resources within changing environments to meet the needs of markets and to fulfill stakeholders expectations.” Johnson and Scholes, 1997 p10
1. Where are we now? 2. Where do we want to be? 3. How are we going to get there?
1. Where are you now? 2. Where do you want to be? 3. How are you going to get there?
What you already know: E1, E2 5 - Evaluation 4 - Analysis 3 - Application you have to be able to do it2 - Comprehension you got to understand 1 - Knowledge you simple have to know
Skills you need to develop: E3 you have to be able to 5 - Evaluation identify problems and 4 - Analysis look at complex practical solutions 3 - Application Also, you should take a2 - Comprehension proposed solution, apply it, then discuss issues 1 - Knowledge arising from the application.
Skills you need to develop: E3 5 - Evaluation you have to be able to identify possible solutions, 4 - Analysis discuss their 3 - Application strengths/weaknesses,2 - Comprehension then recommend and justify what you believe to be the 1 - Knowledge most appropriate.
LIST OF VERBS USED IN THE QUESTION REQUIREMENTS Exam Tip:A list of the learning objectives and verbs that appear in the syllabus and in the question requirements for Review David Harris articleeach question in this paper.It is important that you answer the question according to the definition of the verb.LEARNING OBJECTIVE VERBS USED DEFINITION1 KNOWLEDGE What you are expected to know. List Make a list of State Express, fully or clearly, the details of/facts of Define Give the exact meaning of2 COMPREHENSION What you are expected to understand. Describe Communicate the key features Distinguish Highlight the differences between Explain Make clear or intelligible/State the meaning or Purpose of Identify Recognise, establish or select after Consideration Illustrate Use an example to describe or explain Something3 APPLICATION How you are expected to apply your knowledge. Apply Put to practical use Calculate Ascertain or reckon mathematically Demonstrate Prove with certainty or to exhibit by practical means Prepare Make or get ready for use Reconcile Make or prove consistent/compatible Solve Find an answer to Tabulate Arrange in a table4 ANALYSIS How you are expected to analyse the detail of Analyse Examine in detail the structure of what you have learned. Categorise Place into a defined class or division Compare and contrast Show the similarities and/or differences between Construct Build up or compile Discuss Examine in detail by argument Interpret Translate into intelligible or familiar terms Prioritise Place in order of priority or sequence for action Produce Create or bring into existence5 EVALUATION How you are expected to use your learning to Advise Counsel, inform or notify evaluate, make decisions or recommendations. Evaluate Appraise or assess the value of Recommend Propose a course of action
Count the marks assigned to each verb in past papers: March 2010 March 2011 1. Knowledge 2. Comprehension 13% 5% 3. Application 7% 4. Analysis 23% 17% 5. Evaluation 64% 71% 100% 100% You will not get to 50+ marks by nailing levels 1–4. Evaluation skills are critical to passing the exam!!! Note: Percentages for each section exclude marks for Q4.
(a) (i) Explain alternative approaches that can be used by Boards of Directors, in general, to manage conflicting objectives between their stakeholders. 5 marks If IVB becomes a shareholder in DEF and is granted a seat on the Board: (ii) Discuss why DEFs mission statement might change. 5 marks (b) The Board of DEF is considering acquiring WLS. Advise DEF’s Board if the proposed acquisition of WLS is an appropriate strategic option. Your answer should include: (i) an evaluation of WLS’s financial performance . 20 marks Note: There are 7 marks in this section for your calculations and a further 13 marks are for your commentary on your calculations. (ii) The information highlighted in the audit report prepared by QEG. 10 marks (c) Recommend to the Board of DEF, using an appropriate model (for example, the Boston Consulting Group Portfolio Matrix), future strategies for each of DEFs current and potential business segments. 10 marks Total marks for Question One = 50 marks
D:Implementation of A: Competitive B: Change Management C: Strategic Position and Strategic Plans andEnvironment (20%) (20%) Strategic Options (30%) Performance Evaluation (30%) A1: Evaluate key B1: advise on important external factors elements in the change C1: evaluate the process. affecting an process of strategy organisation’s development. D1: evaluate strategy B2: evaluate tools and the tools and methods for successfully implementing a change processes of programme. C2: evaluate tools strategy A2: evaluate the impact of and techniques implementation information B3: recommend change used in strategy management processes in systems on an formulation. support of strategy organisation. implementation.
IndicativeSyllabus Learning SyllabusSection Subject Description Outcome Content A Discuss the drivers of external demands for corporate social responsibility √ A Non-market strategy and forms of corporate political activity √ A Contemporary developments in the commercial use of the internet √ A Customer retention and loyalty √ B Business ethics in general and the CIMA code of ethics √ C Evaluate the process of strategy formulation √ C Evaluate different organisational structures √ C Real options √ D Theories of control within organisations √ Source: Financial Management, Study Notes
Section A – 50 Marks: Section B – 50 Marks Exam Tip Compulsory•Pre-seen case material, •Answer any 2 of 3 given •How best to use the 20 common to P3, F3 and E3 questions (25 marks minutes reading time? (6-8 weeks prior to each) exam) •Short scenarios, to which•Un-seen case material some or all questions (new info on day of relate exam) •Usually structured•Maximum of 4 questions, around at least one usually building on each model other Material included in the syllabus for managerial or operational levels could also be tested in E3.
Understanding Students don’t UNDERSTAND the question!!! “Briefly explain the importance of a mission statement, and create a mission statement for XYZ Corporation.” “Explain alternative approaches that can be used by Boards of Directors, in general, to manage conflicting objectives between their stakeholders.”
Answering Students don’t ANSWER the question!!! Answer the question that is given Use the information given Apply models and theories in the context of the case/question Don’t provide additional analyses and recommendations The clue as to how to structure the answer is usually found in the question requirements.
Managing Director at Stax, Inc., a global strategy consulting firm Prior to establishing the Stax Colombo office in 2005, served as a director in Stax’s Chicago office, and Manager in Stax’s Boston office Prior to joining Stax, was with The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), helping formulate business strategies for Fortune 500 clients M.B.A. from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University, B.A. in Economics, with honors, from Princeton University. Old boy of Royal College Contact info: ◦ Mobile: 0773128441 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Skype: arjskype www.facebook.com/enterprisestrategy