CROWDSTRIKE Strategic Management Paper
Executive Summary This is a one-page It should be self-contained, providing a busy reader with the most important information from the report. This is NOT a preface that merely introduces the report. Write this section after completing the rest of your report.
Introduction Strategies and Performance: Identify or infer the company’s current mission, major business objectives, and strategies (especially corporate-level and competitive strategies). Evaluate the effectiveness or appropriateness of these strategies, including the company’s portfolio of businesses (for diversified companies) and competitive strategy – don’t just describe them. Evaluate its performance (refer to its ROIC, growth rate, profit margins, etc.). Briefly summarize how well the company has been performing against their objectives and in general.
Analysis of the External Environment
Scan and analyze important factors, trends, and probable future conditions to identify key opportunities and threats for the organization.
- General Environment: What is the most important general and significant trend in the environment of the firm? Use the PESTEL framework). Pick only ONE. How will it affect the firm?
- Business Environment: Industry structure and competitive environment (use Porter’s 5-force model, the extended version if appropriate, and the industry opportunities framework). Include industry growth trends and key success factors.
- Is the industry attractive?
- What is the most important threat in the firm’s industry? Pick only ONE.
- What is the most important opportunity in the firm’s industry? Pick only ONE.
- Internal Analysis Your report must include an analysis of the company’s most important resource/capability. To Sind it, scan and analyze each of the major functional areas, particularly to identify the organization’s strengths and weaknesses. What is the most important resource and/or capability that the firm has? Is it valuable/ relevant, rare/scarce, inimitable/durable/transferable/non-substitutable/costly to imitate? Analyze several candidates but pick only Look for distinctive competencies, sources of competitive advantage, and major ways the organization creates value through its operations.
- Major Strategic Issue In this section, integrate the major findings from your analysis in the previous sections. State clearly the most important critical issue that you have identified, and summarize the reasons that led you to choose it as the major critical issue. What is the issue? And why is it the most critical? A critical issue may include problems, threats, weaknesses, and opportunities, but will more likely involve the interactions of several of them (e.g., a firm’s current strong market position being challenged by an innovative competitor). Consider both short- and long-term issues.
- Available Alternative Strategies Present TWO strategic alternatives both of which the company can consider reasonable in the context of your analysis/diagnosis. This does not mean listing every textbook strategy but does require identifying a range of alternatives for this particular business situation and showing deep understanding of the company’s current strategies. Consider corporate level strategy, competitive strategy, and (possibly) other functional strategies. In addition to identifying two alternative strategies, provide a balanced critique of them (e.g.: issues and problems they address and create, and how they relate to the strengths, weaknesses, 5 opportunities, and threats of this business situation). Be sure to consider implementation/execution implications.
- Recommendations Present a strategy recommendation. Choose your recommendation from the two alternatives you have presented and evaluated in the previous section. Make specific recommendations for corporate and competitive level strategies that address the critical issues you have identified (with a subsection for each). Be sure to include the rationale for your choices and that you have considered the availability of resources to carry out your proposed strategies. Your decisions and rationale can reaffirm, replace, or change the firm’s current objectives and strategy. Ensure that your recommendations have addressed all of the critical issues you have identified.
- Corporate Strategy Recommendations (if there is one)
- Competitive Strategy Recommendations
- Appendices Include copies of key research material you used, including industry Financial data (with sources cited); details on financial analysis; and anything else that would clutter the main text (e.g., you can put your Porter 5-force and VRIO details here). Be sure that you reference in the main body of your report all of the appendices that you used.
Things you need to keep in mind as you prepare your report
- Assume the reader (your top management client) is at least as familiar as you are with the company (therefore, don’t waste time describing details without adding value).
- Avoid the common trap of exhausting yourself with too much analysis and consequently shortchanging your conclusions and recommendations. Instead, keep in mind the whole report and balance your effort among the sections.
- Use quantitative data. Support your analyses with numbers whenever possible. If you have read this sentence, let me know in class asap and I will give you a 0.5% bonus but only the First person to tell me this will get the bonus. For example, if you believe that the firm has a competitive advantage, include in your analyses at least some of the following: the firm’s net margins, ROI, ROA, ROIC over the last several years. Compare such ratios and measures to the ratios and measures of the firm’s competitors.
- Distinguish among facts, opinions, and assumptions.
- Check your work for completeness (are all issues identified and addressed?), justification (do you support with evidence what you claim?), logical Slow (is it clear how you moved from analysis to critical issues to alternatives to recommendations?).
- Organization is important. As you write and edit, think of the reader; make your report easy for the reader to follow and understand. Check spelling and grammar. Carefully edit and proofread your report. • Use lists, tables, and Figures to summarize information and to communicate effectively.