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Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning & Management

CHAPTER 1

Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning and Management

CHAPTER 1 - Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning and Management

  1. The term _________ is used to refer to strategy assessment, formulation, implementation, and evaluation.
  2. Strategic planning
  3. Assessment
  4. Strategic management
  5. Management cycle
  1. Which of these requires a firm to establish annual objectives, devise policies, and allocate resources?
  2. Strategy formulation
  3. Strategy implementation
  4. Strategy evaluation
  5. Strategy manipulation
  1. Anything that a firm does especially well compared to rival firms is referred to as:
  2. Competitive advantage.
  3. Comparative advantage.
  4. An external opportunity.
  5. Opportunity cost
  1. __________ is intended to increase the market share or leadership position of an organization at the expense of competitors
  2. Defensive strategy
  3. Mission
  4. Offensive strategy
  5. Vision
  6. All of the following are considered resources of the company except:
  7. People
  8. Budget
  9. Physical Assets
  10. Raw Materials

CHAPTER 1 - Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning &
Management

Discuss the following model in few sentences. (6 marks)

Please type your answers in the table below:

Where we were?

Review of the past developments and journey of the organisation to get to the state it is now. A helicopter view of the changes and results from past strategies and operating environment.

Where are we now?

The current position of the organisation and its strategic position. Involves evaluating what is happening currently in the internal and external organisation environment with the help of the organisation’s mission statement, its values and SWOT analysis, (Helms and Nixon, 2010).

Where do we want to go?

The future look of the organisation and what the organisation want to create in future with the aid of vision statement, objectives and goals that the organisation want to achieve.

How do we get there?

The route that the organisation will follow to reach the goals and vision. Entails formulation of the action plan, the action item to execute and the scorecard to measure various achievement and to keep the action plan on line, (Meroni, 2008).

CHAPTER 1 - Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning &
Management

Explain the concept and importance of the Strategic Lens as illustrated in the image below.

(5 marks)

Please type your answer below:

The concept behind the strategic lens is that it gives a strategic view of the developments taking place in the organisation and how information flows throughout the organisation to get things done as they are supposed to be, (Steiner, 2010). The lens on the model shows four angles of strategy implementation at an organisation level and the types of traits and their quality in the organisation. The angles of viewing organisation strategy include view the strategy as design to evaluate the working environment, viewing strategy as experience where the strategies are influenced by experience of in the industry from other people in the organisation, view of strategy as ideas that encourages innovations within the organisation, and finally viewing strategy as discourse through communication on different choices taken by the leaders, (Bettencourt, et al, 2014).

The importance of the strategic lens is that it optimizes the workflow of the organisation during strategic planning to meet the set objectives and goals by the organisation.

CHAPTER 1 - Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning &
Management

 

Complete the table given below according to the Miles & Snow Strategy Framework.

(8 marks)

Please type your answers in the table below:

Organizational Culture

Response Style

Example

Prospector

Responds by capitalising on the

emerging opportunities

Capitalising on a new type of technology

to create a new product (A) that is not

available in the market

Reactor

Responds by changing according to

the market changes to maintain the

organisation’s status quo, (Steiner, 2010)

Producing a type of product (A) because it is

selling well since a competing company (Y)

started to sell it

Defender

Responds by reducing the costs of

operation of what already exists

Instead of producing a new product (A),

the company will find cheap ways of

producing its product (B) and sell at lower

prices

Analyzer

Responds by defending the current

strategy but also brilliantly enters

any emerging opportunities

When a company continues to invest in

improving its old product and adverting it

but also invest in introducing another type of

product as a result of change in technology

CHAPTER 1 - Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning &
Management

 

Define each element of the Henry Mintzberg’s 5 P’s of Strategy.

(5 marks)

Please type your answers in the table below:

Plan

This is the detailed proposal of how the organisation will achieve its goals and objectives as laid down on the strategy.

Ploy

It is creating a situation that will disrupt, discourage or influence the competitors to take certain actions that will turn out to be an advantage for the organisation.

Pattern

This is observing the regularity of the organisation behaviour and the consistent way of organisation activities and doing business to develop a strategy, (Minadeo, 2013).

Position

This is the organisation’s relative location in the market place and the operating environment that can be used to create competitive advantage.

Perspective

This is the point of view of particular ideas in the organisation that is defined by the organisation culture and determines the patterns of thinking that shape the institution.

CHAPTER 1 - Basic Concepts of Strategic Planning &
Management

Fill the table from the perspective of the company you are currently working for.

(10 marks)

Strategic Goals

 

Long-term Objectives

 

Short-term Objectives

 

Action Plan

 

Resources Needed

 

CHAPTER 2

The Internal Assessment

CHAPTER 2: The Internal Assessment

The VRIO Framework is a tool used to analyze an organization’s internal resources and capabilities to discover if they can be a source of sustained competitive advantage. 

Briefly define each element of the VRIO Framework and apply the framework to a company’s actual resource or capability that results in sustained competitive advantage.

(2 marks)

1. Valuable

It is used to assess whether a resource adds value to the company thus enabling the company to exploit the available opportunities and defend against threats, (Barney and Hesterly, 2010). A company can apply this by investing in its product differentiation from others and lowering the price to gain sustained competitive advantage.

(2 marks)

2. Rare

It applies to resources that are hard to find are accessible to few or just one company. For example, a company that is the sole producer of a raw material such as rubber can term it as a valuable resource, (Powalla and Bresser, 2010). With this, organisation achieves sustained competitive advantage and performance.

(2 marks)

3. Imitability

It applies to resources that are hard or costly to imitate because they cannot be bought or imitated with another type of resource. A company can apply this by having complex processes and products that are based on the culture and internal relations.

(2 marks)

4. Organization

It means that the company need to be organised to capture value of its products in the market. It can be applied by organising the management, processes, culture and systems of a company to realise and exploit the full potential of its resources, (Barney and Hesterly, 2010).

CHAPTER 2: The Internal Assessment

Describe the three components of the value chain and how each is important to the strategic manufacturing process. Give one example for each component.

(6 marks)

Please type your answer in the table below:

Inputs

They are the purchased factors of production in an organisation that are meant for production and processing of goods and services at the initial stages of the value chain, (Porter, 2001). The inputs are important in the manufacturing process because the quality of the output is determined by the inputs. For example cotton in clothes manufacturing.

Throughputs

This is the rate at which the company passes through inputs in its value chain to transform the inputs into the desired outputs. They are important to ensure efficiency and quality handling of input throughout the value chain. An example of throughput is conveyors for handling materials.

Outputs

These are the final goods and services in the value chain that are ready for the final consumer, (Porter, 2001). It is important in the value chain as a primary activity because it shows what is ready to be taken into the market. For example, shirts from a manufacturing process are the final outputs.

CHAPTER 2: The Internal Assessment

Write the correct numbers of the items in the left column with the correct type of organization structure in the right column.

(6 marks)

1. Centralized knowledge

Simple organization - 4

2. Departments specializing in operational functions

Multi divisional corporation - 5

3. Flexible & broader defined tasks

Functional organization - 2

4. Few employees supervised by the business owner

Mechanistic organization - 1

5. Divisions determined by products, services, market, geography

Organic organization - 3

6. Formal linking roles between functions and products

Matrix organization - 6

 

CHAPTER 2: The Internal Assessment

Analytical Questions. (4 marks each)

  1. How can value chain analysis be used to identify a company’s internal strengths & weaknesses?

Please type your answer here:

The model helps is evaluating the elements in a company’s value chain thus identifying company’s weaknesses and strengths. It shows which activities are mostly valuable in the company and the ones that stands to be improved, (Barney and Hesterly, 2010). The valuable activities are those that create value to the final consumer. The processes that enables the company to create the value are the strengths for the company hence through value chain, the company is able to see the integral parts of its operations, (Powalla, and Bresser, 2010). The management can decide to improve them or maintain them at the rate in which they are contributing value. On the other hand, the activities which do not contribute to the value creation are the weaknesses of the company and where the company may either need to work on or do away with if they are of no significant to organisation success.

  1. In your opinion, does a company’s organizational structure have any influence on its internal strengths & weaknesses? Support your opinion with relevant reasoning.

Please type your answer here:

In my opinion, the type of organisation structure influences the organisation strengths and weaknesses. This is because, the structure of an organisation determines important things at the organisation such as the culture, flow of work and communication within and outside. It also determines the groupings of employees in the organisation thus defining the type and quality of their output, (Abdullah and Siam, 2014). For example, a functional type of organisation structure organises the employees in terms of their area of specialisation or according to their roles and tasks in the organisation thus paving way for quality output. However, this type of structure is affected by bureaucracy which makes it fail to respond quickly to changes in a dynamic environment.

CHAPTER 2: The Internal Assessment

Identify whether the items in column A are core competencies or distinctive competencies and write ‘core’ or ‘distinctive’ in column B accordingly.

(5 marks)

A

B

Manufacturing engines

Core

Expertise in flat-panel screen technology

Distinctive

Ability to design and manufacture powerful microprocessors

Distinctive

Imaging & microprocessor controls

Core

Low-cost, high-quality manufacturing capability

Distinctive

 

CHAPTER 3

The External Environment Analysis

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

Write the correct answer with the help of the given statements.

(2 marks each)

  1. The process of collecting and analyzing information about competitors’ strengths and weaknesses in a legal and ethical manner to enhance business decision-making.

Answer: Competitive Intelligence

  1. Strategies used to keep competitors out of a company’s market

Answer: Competitive Advantage.

  1. Competition for markets with dissimilar products or services

Answer: Imperfect competition

  1. Compete for same customers, but offer different functionality

Answer: Monopolistic competition

  1. The environment external to the organization, its operations and its industry.

Answer: The general environment

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

Highlight the correct answer in Green.

(1 mark each)

  1. 1. Micro external environmental conditions result from:
  2. The behaviors of other organizations in the industry
  3. The quality of products
  4. manufacturing process
  5. economies of scale
  6. An industry is defined as:
  7. a group of firms producing the same item.
  8. firms producing items that sell through the same distribution channels.
  9. firms that have the same seven-digit standard industrial code.
  10. a group of firms producing products that are close substitutes.
  11. Which of the following is NOT an entry barrier to an industry?
  12. expected competitor retaliation
  13. economies of scale
  14. substitute products
  15. government and legal requirements
  16. Porter’s 5 Forces Model considers:
  17. the four P’s of marketing
  18. threats of substitute products
  19. economies of scope
  20. bargaining power of employees
  21. In evaluating customers, which of the following is NOT a relevant question?
  22. How will core competencies meet the customer's needs?
  23. Who is the customer?
  24. What are the customers' needs?
  25. How will our top management team interact with the customer?

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

Complete the SWOT matrix with strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of the company you currently work for or have worked for in past.

(16 marks)

Name of the company:

Business description of the company:

Please type your answers in the table below:

STRENGTHS

WEAKNESSES

OPPORTUNITIES

THREATS

 

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

Analyze and discuss the Competitive Intelligence concept illustrated in the model below.

(6 marks)

Disseminate Intelligence

 

 

Analysis & Discussion:

Please type your answer in the table below:

Competitive Intelligence is used by companies to achieve competitive advantage through analysing the competitor’s information. Therefore, competitive intelligence helps to gather and analyse industrial information on the environment that the firm is working in to enable the management to make business decisions, (Štefániková and Masàrovà, 2014). It helps to understand what the competitors are doing around the market and also anticipate the challenges and obstacles that the competitors face in order to use them as advantages for the company.

To engage in Competitive intelligence, it starts by defining the needs for the users of the company’s product and the available resources to cater for the needs. The company will then collect information from the market, analyse it to come-up with an intelligent way on how to win the market over their competitors. After disseminating intelligence over the information collected, the company will then come-up with a strategy that it will use to win the market beyond the thoughts of the competitor, (Štefániková and Masàrovà, 2014). This will therefore lead to anticipating of the appropriate actions to take in the market and the impact this actions would have on the company and then creates the goals and tactics to take on the market while monitoring the actions of the competitors.

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

Describe the concept that is being presented in the image below.

(5 marks)

Please type your answer in the table below:

DESCRIPTION

The image above shows the sweet spot concept used to analyse the strategic space in the market where a company is able to satisfy the needs of its customers in a cheaper or better ways compared to its competitors in the market. It is therefore used by companies to position themselves in a strategic place in the market that will ensure that the brand that they produce is relevant and attractive to its target consumers and it’s differentiated from that of the other competitors in satisfying the needs of the customer. According to the Chan, et al, (2014), the winning position for a sweet spot positioning should be the one that shows differentiation form the rest of the competitors and should also be relevant to the target consumers. Hence, the company needs to analyse what the competitors are offering to assess how differentiated their products are compared to those of the competitors. It also entails assessing the needs of the consumers to find out whether the company’s product are relevant to the consumers in the market on the basis that they satisfy their needs. Lastly, the capabilities of the company towards improving their products and other factors that will contribute to better efficiencies in the product production will contribute to determine the relative positioning of the company in the market which is the sweet spot.

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

Read the situation below and answer the questions.

(3 marks each)

Souq.com (Souq), which started as an auction site and eventually changed into an e-commerce portal, had tasted reasonable success in the MENA region. In 2016, it decided to collaborate with a potential buyer to realize its growth potential in the region. After a futile attempt to acquire Souq in 2016, multinational e-commerce company Amazon.com, Inc. (Amazon) again placed a bid for US$650 million in 2017. Emaar Properties PJSC (Emaar) also placed a counter bid for US$800 million, challenging Amazon. Both Amazon and Emaar had their respective advantages and challenges they would have to face if they succeeded in acquiring Souq. While some analysts suggested that Amazon was a better fit for Souq considering its global presence and core competency in technology infrastructure and logistics, others preferred Emaar in view of its local advantages like local government support and funding. Souq’s co-founder and CEO Ronaldo Mouchawar (Mouchawar) would have to quickly decide on the company’s next course of action.

Q1. If you were Mouchawar, what would be your decision in this situation?

Please type your answer here:

To take the offer by Amazon.com, Inc. (Amazon)

Q2. What will be the advantages of your decision?

Please type your answer here:

The future of the business world is currently based on technology and global presences which Amazon has invested in. Therefore, taking the offer to collaborate with Amazon would see the company realise its full potential as it is the main aim for the idea behind the collaboration. Amazon would help Souq.com (Souq) to grow technology wise and access various global logistic chains that are attached to the company and its stores.

Q3. What factors should be considered by Souq management while making this decision?

Please type your answer here:

Souq management should consider the strategic business fit with the collaborator and assess the financial state, the technology state of the company as well as its intellectual property and the volume of sales and customers served by the company. The management should also assess the organisation culture, the litigation state/ regulatory issues of the company and tax information available. The competitive landscape is also important and the areas that the company covers with its strategic positioning on the market. Environmental issues in its market, the marketing mode as well as the company’s online presence are of much relevance to the current and future business world

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

For each of the statements given in the table below, identify the group of factors in PESTLE analysis to which they belong.

(6 marks)

Animal rights movements are getting common by the day.

Social

Health & safety regulations are being imposed.

Legal

GPS location guide use has become extremely common.

Technological

Recession trend is getting stronger.

Economic

Polar icecap is melting.

Environment

Government is expected to support innovative business startups.

Political

CHAPTER 3: The External Environment Analysis

Choose the best answer for the following questions about Porter’s Five Forces Model. Highlight your answer in Green.

(1 mark each)

  1. When buyers are able to join together to put pressure on a supplier, this is which of Porter's Five Forces?
  2. Competitive rivalry
  3. Threat of new entrants
  4. Bargaining power of customers
  5. Threat of substitute products
  1. Of Porter's Five Forces, which force has the greatest influence on whether an industry would be profitable?
  1. Competitive rivalry
  2. Threat of new entrants
  3. Bargaining power of customers
  4. Threat of substitute products
  1. When suppliers are limited or inputs are scarce, which of Porter's Five Forces are at play?
  2. Threat of substitute products
  3. Bargaining power of suppliers
  4. Threat of new entrants
  5. Competitive rivalry
  1. What is the main purpose of Porter’s Five Forces Model?
  2. Decide which products to launch
  3. Analyze competition in a market
  4. Manage product portfolios
  5. Inform investment appraisal decisions
  6. According to Porter, which of the following is most important to achieving a competitive advantage?
  1. Serving all customers equally, rather than targeting the most profitable
  2. Operating at lower cost, commanding a premium price, or both
  3. Outsourcing activities which enhance/refine your competitive advantage
  4. Focusing on becoming the most competitive business within the sector/market

 

CHAPTER 4

Strategies in Action

CHAPTER 4: Strategies in Action

Highlight the correct answer in Green.

(1 mark each)

  1. To identify a diversified company's strategy, one should consider such factors as
  2. The extent to which the firm is broadly or narrowly diversified, whether it is pursuing related or unrelated diversification (or a mixture of both) and the recent moves it has made to divest businesses, acquire new businesses and strengthen the positions of existing businesses
  3. Whether the company is focusing on "milking its cash cows" or "feeding its cash hogs."
  4. The technological proficiencies, labor skill requirements and functional area strategies characterizing each of the firm's businesses
  1. A fundamental weakness of related diversification is
  2. The tendency of corporate managers to place too much emphasis on investing in cash cows rather than promising stars
  3. Reducing a company's access to economies of scope
  4. The company will limits its ability for future expansion and profitablity
  5. Organization will have a larger investment in the same market and so will be more exposed to risks of that market
  6. Reducing a company’s ability to economies of scale
  7. Acquisition of an existing business is an attractive strategy option for entering a promising new industry because it
  8. Is an effective way to hurdle entry barriers, is usually quicker than trying to launch a brand-new start-up operation and allows the acquirer to move directly to the task of building a strong position in the target industry
  9. Is less expensive than launching a new start-up operation, thus passing the cost-of-entry test
  10. Is a less risky way of passing the attractiveness test

CHAPTER 4: Strategies in Action

Match the terms in the left column with relevant definitions by writing the correct numbers in the right column.

(5 marks)

Terms

Definitions

1. Forward
Integration

Decision to allow one or more of a company’s value-chain activities to be performed by independent, specialist companies - 2

2. Strategic outsourcing

Occurs when there is no strategic fit or relationship between the new and old lines of business - 5

3. Backward
Integration

Seeking ownership or increased control over competitors - 4

4. Conglomerate Diversification

Seeking ownership or increased control of a firm’s suppliers - 3

5. Horizontal integration

Gaining ownership or increased control over distributors or retailers - 1

 

CHAPTER 4: Strategies in Action

Analyze the problem discussed in this case and fill the case analysis worksheet on the next page.

Note: You can search the internet for more relevant information on the company.

Cemex has an enviable past, a struggling present and an uncertain future. The company boasts of a century-old history and has weathered many a storm in an unfriendly Mexican business environment. Every time a problem hit Cemex, it emerged stronger, altering its course and deftly building business. When global business environment was accepting globalization and leverage as a viable option for growth – Cemex opted for both. And with times gone worse following the US Financial Crisis (2008), it is facing the heat of acute cash crunch. With all options of generating cash from operations going dry, the company is contemplating on disposing assets at distressed value to meet the impending debts in the short-term. Needless to say, it is trying with all its might to restructure its debts to get some breathing space.

CHAPTER 4: Strategies in Action

Case Analysis Worksheet (2+3+2+2+6+2+2 marks)

Please type your answers in the tables below:

1. What are the key issues or problems of this case?

Cimex is facing an acute cash crunch problem from key issues such as unfriendly business environment in Mexico, failure to choose a proper growth or globalization strategy and the US Financial crisis in 2008.

2. Prioritize the issues or problems.

 The issue with the highest impact is the US Financial Crisis (2008) which has led to the acute cash crunch, followed by unfriendly business environment in Mexico and lastly the failure to have chosen proper growth or globalization strategy.

3. Is it necessary to identify the cause of the problems?

Yes, it is necessary to identify the causes of the problems because the cause of the problem will be used to determine the appropriate strategy to rescue the company from going bankrupt.

4. Brainstorm the possible solutions.

1. Cementing its strategic market positioning

2. Going global and investing in other market

3. Diversification through acquisitions and merging with other firms and competitors.

5. Evaluate the best 3 options in terms of advantages and disadvantages.

1. Cementing its strategic market positioning

The advantages of this is that it will help the company to be entirely market oriented with full attention of buyers and able to notice any changes as they arise so that it can react to them in time before it becomes a crisis to the organisation, (Van and Le, 2017).The disadvantage however is facing high level of competition as every company is always working hard to position itself as the best.

2. Going global and investing in other market

The advantage of going global is the increased business growth as the business enters new international market which will increase profits and staying ahead of the local competition. The disadvantage of this option is the costs of establishment in the international market, compliance in new regulations and adopting new cultures in the new market.

3. Diversification through acquisitions and merging with other firms and competitors.

The main advantage of this strategy is gaining power and control over the market which the company is operating in and formation of synergy after the collaboration of the companies thus leading to increased efficiencies in the value chain, (Van and Le, 2017). The disadvantages comes from crush of cultures in the two organisations and also the consumer perceptions on the new engagement.

6. Select the best solution.

Due to inadequate finances available, the best option that can rescue Cemex from its position is the merging with another company that is well established and at a good financial position thus the merging its operations with those of Cemex.

7. Suggest ways for implementing this solution.

The company can use an horizontal merger where it will merge with a company producing two similar products or vertical merger with a company in different position in the supply chain, for example a supplier of important raw material, (Erel, et al, 2012). The company can also choose a conglomerate merger to broaden the services offered in the market or a concentric merger with a company not in the same industry but would help on acute cash crunch problem.

CHAPTER 4: Strategies in Action

Identify the correct answer with the help of clues.

 (2 marks each)

  1. A generic strategy calls for being the low cost producer in an industry for a given level of quality.

Answer: A Cost Leadership Strategy

  1. A framework which helps categorizing products according to their potential of profitability.

Answer: The BCG Matrix

  1. Calls for the development of a product or service that offers unique attributes that are valued by customers and that customers perceive to be better than or different from the products of the competition.

Answer: A differentiation strategy

  1. Concentrates on a narrow segment and within that segment attempts to achieve either a cost advantage or differentiation.

Answer: The focus strategy

  1. The strategy that argues that a firm's strengths ultimately fall into one of two headings: cost advantage and differentiation.

Answer: Porter's Generic Strategies model

  1. Buyer acquires a controlling number of shares and takes control of the target company Answer: A Takeover

CHAPTER 4: Strategies in Action

Complete the grid by inserting all components of the BCG matrix. Define the usage of BCG matrix.

(10 marks)

The BCG matrix is used make long term strategic planning by helping businesses to identify and consider the growth opportunities in the market by analysing the business units or product lines, (Palia, et al, 2014). It then categorises and ranks the business units or products in terms of their attractiveness in the company.

 

CHAPTER 5

Strategy Implementation and Evaluation

CHAPTER 5: Strategy Implementation and Evaluation

Strategy Evaluation Factors

  1. Define Key Performance Indicators: (3 marks)

Please type your answer in the table below:

These are measures used to quantify the overall performance in an organisation and how it is achieving its key business objectives in the long term. They are used to evaluate the success rate of reaching the organisation targets and also helps in determining the financial, operational as well strategic plan in comparison with other industrial players.

  1. Provide examples of KPIs across the following functional departments: (2 marks each)

Please type your answer in the table below:

Finance and Accounting

Current Ratio, Quick ratio, Operational Cash, Inventory Turnover ratio, Return on equity, Account receivable turnover rate, and working capital.

Human Resources

Rate of employee productivity, absenteeism rate, employee satisfaction, costs of hiring, training and development costs as well as employee turnover rate.

Information Technology

Server growth rate, storage utilisation rate, web traffic rate, restoring success rate, Internet proxy performance or remote access server (RAS) percentage of connections.

Operations (Manufacturing)

Volume of production, the defect rate, asset turnover ratio, costs of production, assets turnover rate, rate of factory return and also volume of first time right production.

Sales and Marketing

Rate of customer retention, traffic lead to time for new contracts, sales revenue, cost per lead, traffic on social media, lifetime customer value and also customer win rate.

CHAPTER 5: Strategy Implementation and Evaluation

Explain the barriers to strategy implementation as summarized in the following picture. Give examples of each type of barrier for further clarification.

(8 marks)

The Vision Barrier

The vision barrier to strategy implementation shows that only few people in the organisation (at 5%) are aware of the organisation strategy and can execute it accordingly, (Bey, et al, 2013). When the vision is not defined, it creates confusions in the company, hence, a vision that clear and unified helps to communicate what the future holds for the organisation successfully to the workforce.

The Resource Barrier

Most organisation do not take into consideration the resources available when planning thus causing frustration during strategy implementation. Organisations should properly allocate all its resources such as assets, employees, finances and time to support the development of its strategy and maintain its current structure.

The People Barrier

Incentives in many companies are not aligned towards rewarding strategy development in the company. Having incentive based on organisation strategy is important to motivate employees to work hard for better rewards thus translating to the development of the company’s strategy, (Bey, et al, 2013). Ability to receive some short term satisfaction will motivate employees to work more.

The Management Barrier

The top level of management does not spend time to discuss or look into strategic development of position of the company. About 85% of the top level executive spend less than an hour discussing the strategic plan for the company and issues such as the organisation score card thus creating a burrier to strategy implementation.

CHAPTER 5: Strategy Implementation and Evaluation

Analyze the following problem and answer the question.

(3 marks each)

The CEO was disappointed. He’d spent months with his executive team developing a new organizational strategy. He’d spent weeks flying around the country on a road show to communicate the new strategy. He set up a number of projects to implement the strategy. Strategic objectives were put into each one of his executives’ KPIs.

But six months later, he felt frustrated. When he spoke to people who were not his direct reports, they said that they needed direction. They were confused by the many projects that were being implemented. As they focused on one project, they forgot about the strategy, the company values, and the other projects. Work was being duplicated as different projects were working at cross purposes with one another. His people could not see how it all fits onto implementing one single strategy.

Q1. Analyzing the situation, what do you think the main issue is?

Please type your answer here:

The main issue here is lack of communication and failure to involve employee during the planning of the company’s strategic plan. The CEO personally set the new strategy, come up with the implementation strategy and the Key performance Indicators for the plan thus leading to confusion among the people involved in the projects.

Q2. How can the situation be made better for strategy implementation?

Please type your answer here:

The situation can be made better for strategy implementation through re-designing the strategy to come up with an effective communication plan and employee involvement in the planning and creation of the project. This will enable the employees and other stakeholders to be fully aware of the direction that is needed and the plan of implementation, hence, the company will have a common direction in executing the projects.

CHAPTER 5: Strategy Implementation and Evaluation

Q3. If you were the CEO, how would you initiate strategy implementation?

Please type your answer here:

If I were the CEO, I would first begin by communicating to the employees and stakeholders why we need a new strategy and the objectives of initiating this new strategy as well as how they align with the mission and mission of the company. After all the stakeholders and employees have aligned with the strategy, next would be creating goals and objectives of the strategy together with its KPIs engaging employees ideas and those who will be needed to in the execution of various strategies. This will drive and increase accountability, (Bey, et al, 2013). After the strategy has been taken into action, ensuring that focus is created through regular meetings will be essential. Ensure also that the daily actions are oriented towards the achievement of the goals and objectives. Always tracking progress will also help in ensuring that everything is still in track and aligned alongside the strategy.

Q4. What mistakes in your opinion, should be avoided in strategy implementation?

Please type your answer here:

  1. Repeating previous plan. One should avoid repeating the previous year’s plan however successful it was,
  2. Too long and complex plans. The plan should always be simple to understand by anyone and as short as possible.
  3. Failure to involve everyone in the organization. Anyone that can be affected by a change in organization strategy should be part of the implementation plan too
  4. Failing to match behavior and metrics. The driving KPIs and metrics should be the drivers of the strategy.
  5. Having organizational boundaries. While strategy implementation requires teamwork, having barriers in the organization will block the flow of work and communication.

Q5. How should new strategies be communicated to the employees?

Please type your answer here:

To communicate a new strategy to the employees, a manager needs to create a summary on the strategic plan in a simple way that can be understood easily by the employees while aligning it with the mission and vision of the company. It should define the goals, of the new strategy and make them specific and measurable. Analyse the facts and possible areas that employees can ask questions on and prepare the feedback early enough. It is also important to show the expectations from the top leadership groups in the company and design the score card for the big goals expected in the organisation.

When this is done, communication should be made to all employees through letter or meeting and ensure everything is covered on the chosen mode of communication. After the meetings and agreements made, the mode of communicating progress is agreed on, for example, quarterly, monthly of weekly assessments.

CHAPTER 5: Strategy Implementation and Evaluation

Define the hard and soft elements of the McKinsey 7s model.

(6 marks)

Please type your answer in the table below:

HARD ELEMENTS

The hard elements are those factors that the company’s management can easily identify and also it can be easy to influence them. They include;

1. Strategy. Identified by mission and vision,

2. Structure. Hierarchical layers, and

3. Systems. Informal and formal operating methods.

SOFT ELEMENTS

Soft elements are hard to describe and often less intangible and are influenced by the culture of the company. They include;

1. Skills,

2. Style,

3. Shared values, and

4. Staff.

CHAPTER 6

Learning Organization, Ethics and CSR

CHAPTER 6: Learning Organization, Ethics and CSR

 

Match the 5 disciplines of a Learning Organization with the relevant definitions by writing the correct numbers in the right column.

(5 marks)

Discipline

Definitions

1. Systems Thinking

Unlearn the unwanted business values in exchange for learning new and applicable business values. - 3

2. Personal Mastery

Owned by all levels, creates focus and energy for learning. - 5

3. Mental Models

Accumulation of individual learning that is shared with others, evolving into group knowledge - 4

4. Shared Vision

Interdependence among all functions, working together as a whole system.- 1

5. Team Learning

Individual commitment to the process of learning. - 2

 

CHAPTER 6: Learning Organization, Ethics and CSR

 

Describe the concept of the Triple Bottom Line model and define the financial, environmental and social elements. What are some of the advantages of “triple bottom line” reporting?

(6 marks)

Please type your answer in the table below:

THE TBL MODEL DEFINED

ADVANTAGES OF THE TBL MODEL

The TBL model can be defined as an accounting method that helps companies to be sustainable by focussing on 3ps, that is the profit, people and the planet instead of one bottom line of profits only, (Ahi, and Searcy, 2015).

The model contains the financial elements which is the impact, negative of positive, that the company has on the economy (profits),

The environmental elements which shows the impact of organisation activities, (positive and negative), to the natural environment, which is the planet, and

The social elements which are focused on the impact of organisation activities to the people around it such as employees and families, customers, supplies and other stakeholders.

The advantage of the use of this model is that it increases the accountability and transparency in organisation operations and activities ensuring that they behave socially responsible, (Ahi, and Searcy, 2015). Therefore, it can attract various market advantages such as new customers, acquiring best employee talents and reduced government interventions.

 

CHAPTER 6: Learning Organization, Ethics and CSR

Learning Organization

  1. What are Learning Organizations and how do they contribute to organizational strategy?

(2marks)

Please type your answer here:

Learning organisations are the type of organisations that are continuously learning for everything that they want to do or they are doing and use this experience or experience from the actions of other in the industry to improve the company’s performance, (Senge, 2014).

It contributes to the organisations strategy by increasing commitment to organisational training on ways to achieve organisational goals and also mearing the returns from training and learning through the impact on the strategy. 

  1. What are the four main activities of a Learning Organization?(2 marks)

Please type your answer here:

They include,

  1. Testing new approaches. This includes finding and systematically testing new ways of doing things.
  2. Organized problem solving. This are systematic and scientific methods of solving problems though testing and statistical analysis.
  3. Learning best practices from other experiences. Looking outside of the operating environment to what other organizations have done and analyzing their success and failures
  4. Learning from the past experience and history. Self-analysis to reviewing the past engagement and the success and failures from the activities.
  1. What are some of the roles of leaders in a Learning Organization? (2 marks)

Please type your answer here:

In a learning environment, leaders play a central role to create the vision and mission of the learning organisation, to consider the measures to make learning organisation as the always solution to any business problem and foster the learning culture in the institution, (Senge, 2014). The leaders are responsible in encouraging social networking and collaborating to share ideas and new developments in a manner that will encourage knowledge sharing by ensuring that the rest of the organisation recognises the need for learning in the institution.

CHAPTER 6: Learning Organization, Ethics and CSR

Jellison “J” Curve of Change

(6 marks)

Discuss the five elements of the J curve and define how each applies to an organizational change initiative.Please type your answers in the table below:

ELEMENTS

DEFINITION

1. Forming

It is a period of positioning and getting conversant. It applies in during the introduction of a change initiative characterised by high uncertainty.

2. Storming.

It is a difficult situation and critical stage marked by conflicts thus decreasing productivity. In a change initiative, it is characterised by emergence of personalities and conflicts on how to implement change.

3. Norming.

It is a stage of resolving intrapersonal differences and agreements begin to come along. In a change initiative, it is characterised by resolving of conflicts and development of a consensus on the best strategy implementation method.

4. Performing stage

It’s a stage of success where corporation and consensus is working and the team is well established and organised. It the point of change where the fruits of change starts to bear.

5. Adjourning

It the point where most of the objectives and goals of the change initiative have been established and a wrap-up can be made to begin on the next change strategy.

CHAPTER 7

Strategic Decision Making

CHAPTER 7: Strategic Decision Making

Highlight the correct answer in Green.

(1 mark each)

  1. You run one of the departments in a large company that works in government bonds, futures, and other financial papers. One of your coworkers is being tasked with deciding whether or not to invest in an African country that has had a civil war recently, and has been mostly closed off to the media. What would you advise that he do first as he prepares to make his decision?
  2. Brainstorm
  3. Research
  4. Invest immediately
  5. Pass the project off to another department
  1. One of the biggest mistakes a manager can make is to _____.
  2. have a sense of certainty and not look at any risk
  3. have a sense of uncertainty and look at every risk
  4. prioritize risks in order of the effects of their severity
  5. not ask a colleague for advice
  6. Which of the following are we trying to determine when we talk about weight risk?
  7. Uncertainty of a situation
  8. Certainty of an outcome
  9. The cost of a decision
  10. Company revenue
  1.  decisions are taken according to strategic and operational decisions.
  2. Urgent
  3. Primary
  4. Risk
  5. Administrative
  1.  decisions deal with organizational growth.
  1. Organizational
  2. Strategic
  3. Long-term
  4. Operational

CHAPTER 7: Strategic Decision Making

Identify and define 5 important strategic decision making skills.

(10 marks)

Please type your answers in the table below:

Skills

Definition

Identifying the goal

This is identifying the purpose for taking the decision by thinking of the actual thing to be solved.

Collecting useful information and weigh the available options.

All the information and data that elated to the problem is collected, analysed and the alternative optioned looked into.

Considering the consequences.

The results of engaging any solution are looked into to look at the impact of the final decision.

Making the decision

After understanding the goal, gathering information on available action plans and understanding the consequences of this decisions, a decision can be made now.

Decision evaluation.

When the decision is in action, evaluation is important to ensure that the decision is operating within the plan.

 

CHAPTER 7: Strategic Decision Making

Define and give 2 examples each for strategic, operational, and administrative types of decisions.

 (15 marks)

Please type your answers in the table below:

Definition & Examples

Strategic

Decisions

Operational Decisions

Administrative Decisions

Definition

Strategic decisions are the type of decisions in a company that are based on the entire organisation, (the whole operating environment of the company, the people and stakeholders in the company and the resources attached to the company).

This are organisation decisions based on the daily activities and are meant to manage the day to day operations for the business.

Decisions made on administering, implementing and regulation or control of activities in the organisation.

Examples

Modification of the company’s culture, formation of partnerships of mergers and acquisition.

Scheduling of the workforce, contract with suppliers and inventory management

Decision on pay rates, working hours, organisation policy and procedures.

 

CHAPTER 8

Strategic Change Management

CHAPTER 8: Strategic Change Management

Highlight the correct answer in Green.

(1 mark each)

  1. Which changes affect consumption patterns and purchase behaviors?
  2. Cultural
  3. Social
  4. Demographic
  5. Political
  1. When a change is embraced by those who have been affected by it, the change curve is in which stage?
  2. Resistance
  3. Denial
  4. Integration
  5. Acceptance
  1. Which of the following is not an internal factor driving change?
  2. Changes in human resources and skill levels
  3. New management practices
  4. New product development
  5. Changes in local government
  1. Why might workers resist change?
  2. Change could result into increasing workload
  3. Change could involve relocation
  4. Change could result into breaking up of existing working groups
  5. All of the above
  1.  research is important in identifying changing trends.
  2. technology
  3. market
  4. social
  5. economic

CHAPTER 8: Strategic Change Management

Identify and explain the change management model being shown in the image below.

(5 marks)

Name of the model: The Kurt Lewin Change Management Model.

Please type your answer in the table below:

DESCRIPTION

The Kurt Lewin Change Management Model comes from the idea of changing an ice block into a new shape. The same process of unfreezing, changing and refreezing can be used to foster change in organisation. The unfreezing stage entails preparing the workforce and other stakeholders for to be ready for the changes that are about to occur through motivations to create the need for change. After everything is ready and the decision is made for the changes to be made, then the Change Stage comes in where the actual changes on the structure, practices or policies of the organisation are made, (Hussain, et al, 2018). Everything to be changed is done at this stage be before entering the final stage of the change process. The final stage of change is the Refreezing/ freezing the changes that have been made on the second stage and normalising them as the daily routine for the organisation.

CHAPTER 8: Strategic Change Management

Case Analysis.

In July 2012, shares of Nokia were trading below $2 — far off from their highs of nearly $60 in 2000 and nearly $40 in 2007. At the time of this writing, the shares have somewhat rebounded, up more than 300% after having climbed into the $6.50 range.

At the turn of the millennium, Nokia was one of the world’s largest suppliers of mobile devices. This, of course, was before smartphone mania swept the nation (and the world).

Fast forward to 2010, and while Nokia remained profitable, the writing was on the wall. It was only a matter of time before Nokia phones, as they currently existed, would remain relevant.

Because Apple beat Nokia to market with its iPhone, the latter company missed its opportunity to lead the smartphone revolution.

Case Questions:

(4 marks each)

  1. As a change management consultant, what changes would you recommend for Nokia in the situation described above?

Please type your answer here:

The recommendable changes that could have rescued Nokia include change in technology to join the new smartphone technology that took its market share. By change in technology, Nokia would have been assured of maintaining its relative market share or increasing it.

Change in management is also a recommendable change due to the big difference in the past operating pattern compared to where the world was moving. A change in management would ensure that the company has added new skills that would guide in the coming market for smartphones.

  1. Which model of change management would you use to implement the changes recommended in the previous question?

Please type your answer here:

The best model of change management that would fit in implementing the changes would be the Kurt Lewin Change Management Model. The unfreezing changing and freezing state would enable Nokia to make the changes in the best way possible. The unfreezing would enable the company prepare to change its state of technology to move into smartphone production by adjusting the resources, training the workforces and brainstorming on the need for change before freezing again to make the smartphone production as the main strategy.

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