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SM Project Guidelines - Part One


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SM Project Guidelines - Part One

  1. 1. Strategic Management BUSM 3200 These guidelines are provided to help in your preparations for the group assignment. They do NOT represent in any way “model answers” or a correct approach. Rather they provide suggestions as to how to proceed with data collection and analysis leading to the completion of your report. Make sure you read the guidelines provided by the RMIT course coordinator carefully.BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (JAN 2013) GDS 1-1
  2. 2. Requirements  You will work in pairs (a group of two (2)) to conduct a strategic analysis and strategy evaluation, and write a report on a real- life business. Please note that this report will focus on business- level strategy. (DO NOT write on the whole organization businesses!)  You are required to select a real-life organization (or a strategic business unit (SBU)) for this assignment. You are advised to conduct a preliminary research (e.g., browse organization websites and annual reports) prior to deciding which organization (or its SBU) will be selected for your assignment so as to make an informed choice.  You should report the firm for your assignment to your local lecturer by Week 4.  Write a 2500 - 3000 word report, including 200 words of an executive summary, but excluding references and appendix.BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 2
  3. 3. Selecting the organization  Choose carefully and don’t change your mind half way- wasted time and effort  Must be FOR-PROFIT companies; no government bodies or charities (not-for-profit)  Avoid large global corporations such as Apple, Samsung, etc. I will have the final decision on your choice so send in your form early!  You must be able to get sufficient information sources to start your research  Published reports, GMID, Factiva, others  The organization must have some key developments in strategy  Entering new markets These developments  Developing new products / services give you an opportunity to relate  Joint ventures, etc theory to actual activities of the selected firmBUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-3
  4. 4. SBU or organization as a whole?  If your organization is too large then you select an SBU (strategic business unit) or division within that company and just write about that SBU  Remember the focus of the report is on “Business Strategy’ and NOT Corporate Strategy  Example within the Wearnes Group you could write just about ‘Wearnes Automotive Division”BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-4
  5. 5. You are not writing a business plan!  Get this clear from the start  You are doing a strategic analysis first  Then you will comment on the current business strategies that it is pursuing (I will cover this in the next set of my guidelines)  You are NOT making recommendations; rather you are doing (in Sections 5 and 6 of the report) a critical assessment of the suitability of the chosen strategies  So remember, you are NOT writing business plan and do not follow formats that are irrelevant. Stick to what is given.BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-5
  6. 6. How to approach the development and presentation of a report 1. Your report format should follow closely the requirements of the assignment. Read EVERY section carefully and understand fully what is needed. DO NOT insert additional information that is not required or follow standard formats. 2. The length is 300o words max including 200 word executive summary but not including appendices and bibliography 3. The marking criteria is clearly shown on pages 4-5 of the Assignment Guide provided by RMIT. Understand clearly how we grade each section of the report. 4. Assume each of the 6 sections carry equal weight and therefore your content must be proportionate. 5. Read and follow all instructions regarding TURNITIN and online submission. Ignorance is not an acceptable reason for non- compliance. Marks will be deducted if you did not meet RMIT requirements for TURNITIN and online submission.BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-6
  7. 7. Here are my comments on the first three sections of our report GET STARTED EARLY! DEADLINE IS FAST APPROACHING- WEEK 8 – BUT YOU NEED TO GET THINGS READY BY WEEK 7 BECAUSE OF TURNITIN!BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 7
  8. 8. Section 1: Requirement: Describe briefly the background information (strategic context) of the firm (or SBU) you have selected. This information should be brief and relevant to the discussion of your assignment and thus may include ownership, history, size, business scope, major products/services, and major markets of the firm (or SBU) selected.BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-8
  9. 9. Comments on Section 1 Don’t write more than 1 to 1.5 pages Give a brief introduction to the company or SBU Only highlight relevant information Better still, the information you list should point towards the new strategies that the firm is embarking on such as new ventures, new markets, new technologies, etc Keep the information current – not dwell too much on history You can mention about corporate culture and values.BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-9
  10. 10. Section 2: Requirement: Conduct a macro-environment analysis for the entire industry within which the firm (or SBU) operates. You should use the analytical framework provided in the textbook. Foci will be placed on the understanding of the purpose of this analysis, the identification of key factors and their implications in terms of key opportunities and threats, and the discussion of their overall impact on the industry growth in the future. Draw your conclusion based on your macro-environment analysisBUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-10
  11. 11. Section 2: Environment and PESTEL Research and write about RELEVANT PESTEL factors (general broad-brush factors will get no marks) See my lecture notes on PESTEL Not just listing PESTEL factors but more importantly being able to discriminate which factors carry greater implications for the company in terms of opportunities and threats. Explain the implications and focus on key drivers (this part earns high credit if you do it well) You can even do some brief scenarios for the industry – what the future outlook might beBUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-11
  12. 12. NOTE: it is important to do a PESTEL analysis with a specific emphasis on the industry you are studying (see page 51) Keep the PESTEL factors specific to the industry you are studying; avoid using broad generic factors that have no relevance to your analysis. Important to note for your Group Assignment on Strategic Analysis!BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 2-12
  13. 13. What must be demonstrated 1. Relevance of factors. This comes from good secondary research. You cant get such information from textbook to answer specifically to YOUR SBU or company! 2. Only highlight key factors under each category of PESTEL. Sweeping statements such as “the economy is booming” or the “GDP has grown by 5%” will earn no marks if it has no bearing to your case! 3. Link your PESTL factors to Opportunities and Threats 4. At the end of this section, write a summative paragraph as to how you see the factors impacting on the growth of the industryBUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-13
  14. 14. Sometimes presenting in a table can be useful Key PESTEL factors Identified Implications for Identified as a key impacting on the ____ as: the industry factor industry (just a brief description) OPP THR Political/ Legal: 1. x 2. x 3. Economic: 1. X 2. x 3. Social etc At the end of PESTEL listing, insert a summative paragraph that explains the overall impact of these forces on industry growth and future opportunities (industry outlook)BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-14
  15. 15. Section 3: Requirement: Undertake an industry (competitive) analysis using Porter’s 5-forces model. You are required to pay attention to the purpose of this analysis, the inter-connectedness of different aspects of the competitive forces, the links between the competitive forces and macro-environment, and their overall impact on the industry and the organization selected in terms of main driving forces in the competitive environment. Draw your conclusions based on your five-force analyses.BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-15
  16. 16. Comments on Section 3- Five Forces I want the five forces factors listed in your report to be specific to your industry; using factors listed in a textbook would not be useful unless you can show how they are relevant to your industry After explaining all the five forces (and the detailed factors under each force) you then need to highlight WHICH key force/s would be of particular concern to the firm and why. Another term is the word ‘links’ – what is the link between PESTEL factors and the five force? Example: Technology  Threat of SubstitutesBUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-16
  17. 17. Applying Porter Model to a specific industry (airline) Notice how each of the factors listed in each category are specific to the airline industry. NOT textbook points are usedBUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-17
  18. 18. Again using a table is useful: Five Force Factors as Implications for the Link to selected related to our ____ industry macro-environmental industry factor Threat of new entrants: you don’t need to do a link for each 1. Just provide selective examples; 2. 3. five force factor Rivalry in the industry: 1. 2. 3. Power of Buyers: Substitutes: Power of Suppliers:BUSM 3200- Strategic Management (July 2012) GDS 1-18