Analysis of organisations strategic intent posture

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Assignment-1:

Strategy and Sustainability: The Expression of Organisational Values and Vision

Before you begin to work on specific external, internal and integrative strategic thinking and analysis frameworks, it is important to take stock of the company you are studying from the perspective of its mission and vision of social responsibility (Kramer and Porter, 2006) and strategic intent (Hamel and Prahalad, 2005).

For this module, the Individual Assignment of each unit will be part of the Final Project. The topics of all assignments should be answered based on the selection of a single specific company, which will be the focus of each unit's Individual Assignment. As such, make a careful selection of an organisation in a specific country and industry.

To prepare for this Individual Assignment:

- Examine the mission, vision and objectives of several organisations and select the company that best meets the requirements described in the Final Project Guidelines. This may be the company that you work for, or another organisation with which you are familiar and in which you are interested. To find an appropriate organisation, you may want to consider a publically traded firm listed on one of your country's stock exchanges since their annual reports and other communications will be readily available. If you anticipate problems due to confidentiality or intellectual property concerns, select a different company.

-  Review the Readings.

-  Consider how strategic intent can lead to sustainable competitive advantage.

-  Also consider how an organisation's posture towards CSR can affect its long-term opportunities.

To complete this Individual Assignment:

Part 1:

-  Briefly describe the company you selected, its products and services, market and niche.

-  Conduct a thorough and well-argued analysis of your selected organisation's strategic intent posture that provides evidence that the organisation either has, or does not have, a strong strategic-intent posture.

-  Be sure to explain the strategic implications of your analysis and speculate on what this strong strategic intent posture could bring to the organisation in terms of future strategic direction and choices.

-  Be sure to support your assignment with evidence from the Readings and other current literature from the UoRL Library and other credible sources. Consult the Harvard Referencing Style Guide for proper citation and referencing information.

Part 2:

-  Evaluate the CSR and mission/vision and values of the organisation by conducting on-line research of secondary sources (annual reports, magazine and journal articles, etc.) and answering the following questions as an analyst, making sure  to document your sources:

o What is the fundamental purpose of the organisation (apart from 'making money'), why does it exist and what problems does it solve in the world?

o How would customers and other major stakeholders react if this company were to go bankrupt next year?  Would it matter?  Why or why not?

o Has the company been consistent and true towards it purpose and vision over the years?  Is it consistent now? 

o Since 'actions speak louder than words', has the company said it valued its human resources and then cut back or laid off many workers in a time of retrenchment?  Is this a historical pattern?

o Has senior leadership demonstrated a willingness to give-back in times of organisational stress?

o How many CEOs, COOs and CFO's has the company had in the past 10 years?

o Is leadership stable and forward looking?

o Are organisation-wide goals stated merely in terms of market growth or financial outcomes for a year or two?

o Does the organisation have a long-term, ambitious strategic intent? Note: Review and integrate the Hamel &Prahalad (2005) concepts into this answer.

o Is it clear where the company would like to be in the long-term?

o What must the organisation do differently to achieve its long-term intentions?

-  Once you have conducted your research and have responded with detailed evidence and documentation, take a look at all of your answers and identify the major implications, in terms of strategic analysis.

o Remember, an implication is the conclusion that can be drawn from something, although it is not explicitly stated. In this case, you as the analyst should review all of your answers to the questions and write a 'what does it mean?' summary. This summary will help you as you move into new areas of analysis-- and eventually this summary along with others will be used to craft your Final Project.

Assignment-2:

Evaluating Strategic Approaches to Innovation on Performance Frontier

In this Individual Assignment, you will extend the general ecosystem and stakeholder analysis that you conducted in your Shared Activity in this unit by also conducting a thorough and critical competitive environment (five forces) analysis of the organisation you have chosen for your project paper.

To prepare for this Individual Assignment:

-  Review the Readings and, in particular, examine the articles by Eccles and Serafeim (2013) and Kim and Mauborgne (2004) and the case studies for the unit.

-  Search the UoRL Library for scholarly sources and the online business press for articles on the company you selected for your Final Project that are related to its strategic innovation and sustainability strategies (including ESG issues).

To complete your Individual Assignment:

-  Conduct a brief, well-argued analysis of the past 5 to 10 years of strategic innovation actions by your selected company (particularly relative to core competitors), which explains the evolution of the company through the lenses of both traditional and blue ocean innovative strategy frameworks.

o Based on your analysis, provide a convincing argument on how well prepared you think your company is to create new strategic innovation actions or to respond to competitor's innovations. Be sure to clearly argue how you've reached your conclusions and why you think they are appropriate. (Note: approximately 250 words)

-  Conduct a thorough and well-argued 'performance frontier' analysis which evaluates how well the company you have selected for your Final Project has done in the past five years in terms of ESG sustainability innovations and organisational improvements. Consider an in-depth examination of the company through the core questions that Eccles and Serafeim (2013: 53) outline:

o Have they identified which ESG issues are most critical in their business?

o Have they quantified the financial impact that such improvements would have (had)?

o Have they undertaken major innovation in products, processes and business models to achieve the improvements?Which ones, and which stakeholders benefited?

o Have they communicated with stakeholders about those innovations? Who were the winners and/or losers that the innovations impacted?

o Did the company break down barriers to change or change its incentive systems? Did it exhibit 'strategic intent' on these issues, as Hamel and Prahalad (2005) treat the topic?

-  Be sure to identify the implications for future competitiveness, based on your analysis above.

-  Be sure to support your postings with evidence from the Readings and current literature from the UoRL Library and other sources. Consult the Harvard Referencing Style Guide for proper citation and referencing information.

Assignment-3:

Strategic Position Statement Analysis

For this Individual Assignment you will 'deconstruct' what you think is the current strategic position of your organisation (based on research of the company you selected for your Final Project), and you will do a rough-cut evaluation of that strategy and related strategic position statement.

In Unit 6 you will use the responses to these strategy evaluation questions again to guide you in developing a detailed set of strategy recommendations that address the future.

To prepare for this Individual Assignment:

-  Review the Readings and, in particular, examine the articles by Collis and Rukstad (2008), Mitchell et al. (2011) and Reeves et al. (2012).

-  Search the UoRL Library and the business press for scholarly sources and articles on the company you selected for your Final Project. Review resources that are related to its strategic position statements, any inferential information on its recent strategies and current strategic plan.

To complete your Individual Assignment:

-  Conduct a thorough and well-argued strategy and strategic position evaluation which evaluates your selected company's recent and current strategy, either based on explicit information directly addressing strategy or based on inferential and circumstantial analysis of general information. Use the following questions to guide your analysis and summary:

o Is your organisation's strategy and the specific action plans it has put in motion, consistent, and do all the elements align to support each other? How and why?

o Are the activities, skills, competencies and capabilities of your company tailored to suppor its strategy? How and why?

o Is the organisation's strategy, and the specific action plan steps it has taken, consonant with the current and future needs of the external ecosystem and stakeholder needs?  How and why?

o Is the organisation's strategy, and the specific action plan steps it thas taken, feasible, given current and future investments? If not, what would make it feasible, and how can the company reach the stretch goal (intent)?

o Does your company's strategy lead to incremental change within the industry, or more fundamental change within the industry, or does it establish new positions outside the industry or in blue ocean spaces? How and why is the scope of your company's strategy the most appropriate?

o Does your company's strategy preserve any advantages of the company? Which advantages, and how and why?

o Does your company's strategy position the company to perform activities differently than rivals do? How and why?

o Has the company identified trade-offs and limitations of its strategic action plan? What are they and why?

-  Be sure to support your postings with evidence from the Readings and current literature from the UoRL Library and other sources. Consult the Harvard Referencing Style Guide for proper citation and referencing information.

Assignment-4:

Analysing and Evaluating the Implications of the General Ecosystem and Competitive Environment

In this Individual Assignment, you will extend the general ecosystem and stakeholder analysis that you conducted in your Shared Activity in this unit by also conducting a thorough and critical competitive environment (five forces) analysis of the organisation you have chosen for your Final Project.

To prepare for this Individual Assignment:

-  Examine and critically review the peer and faculty feedback that was offered during the Shared Activity.

-  Review the Readings and, in particular, examine the works by Porter (2008) and Pitt and Koufopoulos (2012: Chapter 3).

-  Review the Tools for Your Strategic Thoughts document and consider how to best deploy them. You are not required to use the pre-designed templates, but you will be responsible for a robust and complete analysis with implications clearly stated.

-  Consider the implications of the articles by Nandakumar, et al. (2010) and Andrews and Morgen (2013) as you develop the final draft of your Individual Assignment.

To complete your Individual Assignment:

-  Examine and critically incorporate peer and Faculty Member feedback offered during the Shared Activity to modify and improve your general ecosystem and stakeholder analysis work.

o Note: This draft is not meant to be a wholesale but rather an inclusion of any important changes based on peer feedback recently given.

-  Conduct a thorough and well-argued competitive forces analysis (focusing on the Porter (2008) framework and work by Pitt and Koufopoulos (2012: Chapter 3).

-  Be sure to support your postings with evidence from the Readings and current literature from the UoRL Library and other sources. Consult the Harvard Referencing Style Guide for proper citation and referencing information.

Assignment-5:

Analysing and Evaluating Implications of the Internal Environment

In this Individual Assignment, you will essentially repeat the analysis that you performed in the Shared Activity, which was a practice session. Based on the various examples of your peers' analyses, you should be in a better position to do a strong resource-based analysis of the organisation that you selected for your Final Project.

To prepare for this Individual Assignment:

-  Examine and critically review the peer and faculty feedback that was offered during the Shared Activity.

-  Review the Readings and, in particular, examine the VRIOS framework and internal value chain information in Pitt and Koufopoulos.

-  Review the SCOT Analysis document and consider how to best deploy it. You are not required to use the pre-designed templates, but you will be responsible for a robust and complete analysis with implications clearly stated.

To complete your Individual Assignment:

-  Prepare a table in Word that replicates Figure 5.3 on page 138 in Pitt and Koufopoulos (2012: Chapter 5). Rather than just using the phrase 'distinctive capability' as the left hand column, use the following category boxes, in this order from top to bottom:

o Skills: 1, 2, 3, and so on (i.e. core individuals in the organisation who bring distinct value to it)

o Competencies and capabilities: 1, 2, 3, and so on (i.e. work-groups, functional units, discrete activities), as ordered by a detailed rendering of the organisation's value-chain activities

o Other strategic assets

-  Using the table to organise your thoughts, make a detailed VRIOS evaluation of the skills, competencies and capabilities and other strategic assets of the organisation that you selected for your Final Project. Use the A through D scale shown in the figure.

-  Be sure to explain what the strategic implications of your analysis are and how the set of implications limits or shapes your strategic recommendations.

-  Be sure to identify specific future strategy actions and recommendations based on your evaluation of options and to provide a basic defense of why your recommended actions are the most appropriate.

o Note: You may use any and all of the Readings from this unit to support your reasoning.

-  Be sure to support your postings with evidence from the Readings and current literature from the UoRL Library and other sources. Consult the Harvard Referencing Style Guide for proper citation and referencing information.

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Reference no: EM13732509

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