Recent Papers 03-26-2022

Develop an in depth knowledge of corporate strategy within the context of the organisation’s markets and commercial sustainability

Learning, Teaching, Assessment and Feedback Plan

Module Title:

Applied Corporate Strategy

Module Code:

QAB020X603S

 

Module Convener:

Brief introduction to module

Welcome to Applied Corporate Strategy module.

This module will give you a clear understanding of what Strategy is all about and how organisations develop it. You will also learn how to apply the essential concepts and tools of strategy that will be useful in your business career whichever sector you choose.

Main topics revolve around strategic position of organisations, the concept of competitive advantage (how to gain and sustain competitive advantage for longer) and evaluation of business strategies. After a closer look at business and corporate levels of strategy, the module ends with selected aspects of implementation focused on culture. Throughout this module, the emphasis is on application rather than critical discussion of covered models and frameworks.

Throughout the module, seminars will involve critical analysis of real-life cases to address a range of strategic problems. In this way, you will develop commercial awareness and recognise drivers for business success. You will also have the opportunity to work with others and communicate your views. Formative assessment of these seminar cases will help in preparing the final assessment task.  

Final assessment is a 3,000 word Strategic Report analysing an extended case study (deadline 20/04/22).This will be briefed in Week 2 and submitted in or after Week 12 (to be confirmed).

Module learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, you will be able to:

1. Knowledge outcome – develop an in depth knowledge of corporate strategy within the context of the organisation’s markets and commercial sustainability

2. Intellectual /transferable skills outcome –utilise a wide range of frameworks and techniques to the analysis of complex business situations to inform corporate strategy; and demonstrate criticality (independent thinking) in the evaluation and synthesis of information. You will be able to present the findings of your analysis in an academic style.

Please see below for the weekly programme for Applied Corporate Strategy. Please also check the Moodle pages each week for access to resources, lecture recordings and slides, advice on assessment etc.

 

 

Discover

Explore

Share and apply

Week

(w/b)

Topic

Topic Overview

Interactive content

Essential reading

Instructions and link(s)

Discussion board

Student checklist

1

 

31/1

Introduction to the Applied Corporate Strategy module

 

Introduction to strategy

 

Introduction to the module:

Learning Teaching & Feedback Plan.

 

Assessment & Reading:

Strategic Report & reading resources.

 

Introducing Strategy:                        definition, roots, levels, issues and decisions.

 

Johnson, G., Whittington, R., Scholes, K., Angwin, D., &Regner, P. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11) Pearson. Ch. 1

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 1)

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

Please read the material related to Roehampton university on moodle.

 

Think about the following questions:

  1. Who “makes” strategy at Roehampton?
  2. Identify a number of Roehampton’s key strategic issues. Why are they “Strategic”?
  3. What are Roehampton’s most important strategic decision taken in the last 5 years?

Seminar activities

 

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

 

In small groups (4-5 students) discuss Roehampton’s key strategic issues and answer the following questions:

  1. Who “makes” strategy at Roehampton?
  2. Identify a number of Roehampton’s key strategic issues. Why are they “Strategic”?
  3. What are Roehampton’s most important strategic decision taken in the last 5 years?

Share your findings with the rest of the class

Checklist questions:

What did you learn about strategy?

Why are strategic decisions complex and difficult to make?

 

 

2

 

07/2

Analysing the Strategic Environment: External Business Environment

 

Assessment brief

 

 

Assessing the external business environment:

 

Macro-Environment Analysis:

understanding & applying tools to identify Emerging Opportunities and

Impending Threats in external business environment

 

Key drivers of change

 

Scenarios and scenario analysis

 

 

 

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Pearson. Ch. 2.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 2.)

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

Please read the “UK budget airlines (external environment)”case (provided on moodle in Week 2 - Explore section) and think about the following seminar questions:

  1. Identify and discuss the most important issues in the external environment of the industry
  2. Conclude each issue as an Opportunity (O) or a Threat (T)
  3. Identify Key drivers of change

 

Familiarise yourself with and choose a case/firm for your summative assessment from the provided list and start addressing the formative assessment.

 

Seminar activities

 

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

 

In small groups (4-5 students) discuss

external business environment for the industry (UK budget airlines) by addressing all seminar questions:

  1. Identify and discuss the most important issues in the external environment of the industry
  2. Conclude each issue as an Opportunity (O) or a Threat (T)
  3. Identify Key drivers of change

Share your findings with the rest of the class.

 

Checklist questions:

What did you learn about external business environment?

Quiz.

3

 

14/2

 

Industry and market analysis

 

Assessment of industry attractiveness

Porter’s 5 Forces Analysis: understanding & applying the ideas.

 

Assessing Industry Attractiveness and Competition

 

Formative Assessment: Start working on your report worksheet brief for assessment planning.

 

 

 

 

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Pearson. Ch. 3.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 2.)

 

Recommended reading:

‘How Much Does Industry Matter, Really?’ Strategic management journal 18(S1): 15–30.

 

 

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

Please read the “UK budget airlines (industry)” case (provided on moodle in Week 3 - Explore section) and think about applying 5 Forces analysis to assess industry attractiveness (assess each force as High, Moderate or Low and having these in mind discuss industry attractiveness).

 

 

 

Seminar activities

 

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

 

In groups (4-5 students) address the following seminar questions:

Apply 5 Forces analysis to assess attractiveness of the given industry (UK budget airlines):

  1. Discuss each force in the industry
  2. Assess each force as High, Moderate or Low (elaborate your reasons)
  3. Having these 5 Forces in mind assess industry attractiveness

 

Share your findings with the rest of the class

 

Checklist questions:

What did you learn about industry attractiveness?

Quiz.

 

4

 

21/2

Analysing Strategic Capability

 

Assessment of organizational resources and competences

Resource-based Strategy: introduction to RBV

Foundations of Strategic Capability: understanding resources & competences (activities).

 

Resources

  • Human
  • Physical
  • Intangible
  • Financial

Competences

Using Value chain to identify and list distinctive competences (activities) for an organisation

 

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Pearson. Ch. 4.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 3.)

 

AND

 

Hill, T. & Westbrook, R. (1997) SWOT Analysis: It’s time for a product recall. Long Range Planning 30(1) pp. 4652.

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

Please read the Ryanair case (provided on moodle) and identify and discuss unique resources for Ryanair(human, physical and intangible). Each needs to be assessed as a Strength (S) or a Weakness (W).

 

By now you should have chosen the case/company for the assignment, so start working on the formative assessment. Define the industry and identify a number of most important external strategic issues each assessed as an Opportunity or a Threat. Please use the report worksheet for that purpose.  

Seminar activities

 

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

 

In groups (4-5 students) address the following seminar questions:

Seminar questions:

  1. Discuss physical, financial and human resources for Ryanair
  2. Discuss intangible resources for Ryanair. Each resource should be identified as a Strength (S) or a Weakness (W)
  3. Construct a Value Chain for Ryanair and identify a number of distinctive competences (use the provided template –“value chain template.docx”)

Share your findings with the rest of the class

Checklist questions:

What did you learn about resources of an organisation?

 

5

 

28/2

Developing Competitive Advantage

 

 

Competitive Advantage – links to CSFs.

 

Creating Advantage

 

Value Chain, VRIO and Core Competences

 

 

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Pearson. Ch. 4.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 3.)

 

AND

 

Prahalad, C.K. & Hamel, G. (1990) The Core Competence of the Corporation. Harvard Business Review, May-June 1990.

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

This week we use the same case as we used last week - Ryanair (provided on moodle).

Please think about constructing a Value Chain showing/listing Ryanair’s distinctive competences (if you didn’t do it last week). VRIO model should be applied to those distinctive competences while searching for Ryanair’s core competences.

Seminar questions:

  1. Construct a Value Chain for Ryanair and identify a number of distinctive competences (or use the one you constructed last week)
  2. Apply VRIO to identify Ryanair’s Core Competences

Share your findings with the rest of the class

Seminar activities

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

 

In groups (4-5 students) address the following seminar questions:

  1. Construct a Value Chain for Ryanair and identify a number of distinctive competences (or use the one you constructed last week)
  2. Apply VRIO to identify Ryanair’s Core Competences

Share your findings with the rest of the class

 

Individual work

Continue working on the formative assessment by addressing the Q2 (identification of unique resources and distinctive competences - use Value Chain to address the latter).

Each item should be assessed as a Strength or a Weakness of the firm.

Checklist questions:

What did you learn about competences of an organisation?

Quiz (internal analysis)

6

7/3

 

Business Level Strategy

Formative assessment due by the end of this week!

Business Level Strategy and competition

 

Generic Strategies:

Porter & the Strategy Clock.

Gaining Competitive Advantage and sustaining it for longer

Strategic Business units (SBUs)

 

Business Level Strategy and competition

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Pearson. Ch. 7.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 6.)

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

This week’s seminar is based on the IKEA case (p. 237 Johnson et al.).

Seminar questions:

  1. What generic strategy is IKEA pursuing?
  2. Discuss the reasons providing appropriate examples

Seminar activities

 

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

In groups (4/5) answer the following

seminar questions:

  1. What generic strategy is IKEA pursuing?
  2. Discuss the reasons providing appropriate examples

Share your findings with the rest of the class

What have you learnt about generic strategies?

 

8

21/3

Corporate Level Strategy

Corporate Level Strategy:

 

Strategic choices

 

Strategic Directions

 

Strategic Methods

 

Portfolio Management: review of simple toolsfor portfolio analysis.

 

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Ch. 8.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 7.)

 

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

This week’s seminar is based on the Virgin case (p. 271 Johnson et al.).

Seminar questions:

  1. Review the four “Corporate Parenting” roles & make a case for one of them fitting the Virgin Group in 2017.
  2. How does Virgin use its core competencies to add value to its constituent businesses?
  3. 3.    What is the function of the BCG Growth/Share matrix? How would you apply it to the Virgin case?

Seminar activities

 

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

 

In groups discuss and answer the following seminar questions:

  1. Review the four “Corporate Parenting” roles & make a case for one of them fitting the Virgin Group in 2017.
  2. How does Virgin use its core competencies to add value to its constituent businesses?
  3. 3.    What is the function of the BCG Growth/Share matrix? How would you apply it to the Virgin case?

Share your findings with the rest of the class.

 

What have you learnt about Corporate strategy (directions, methods and portfolio management)?

9

28/3

Evaluating strategy

 

Evaluating & Improving Strategies: application of the SAFe tests.

Stakeholder analysis

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Ch. 12.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 11.)

 

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

 

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

This week’s seminar is based on Gazprom and NIS case (p. 695 Johnson et. a. Ed.10) – provided on moodle.

 

Seminar questions (Evaluation of Gazprom’s acquisition of NIS - case provided see moodle):

  1. Produce a TOWS matrix to address Suitability
  2. Construct Power/Interest matrix to identify relevant stakeholders and for one of these discuss if the strategy was acceptable or not
  3. Consider financial and human (skills) resources while addressing Feasibility

Seminar activities

 

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

In groups evaluate Gazprom’s acquisition of NIS by answering the following seminar questions:

  1. Produce a TOWS matrix to address Suitability
  2. Construct Power/Interest matrix to identify relevant stakeholders and for one of these discuss if the strategy was acceptable or not
  3. Consider financial and human (skills) resources while addressing Feasibility

Share your findings with the rest of the class

What have you learnt about strategy evaluation?

Quiz.

10

 

4/4

 

Culture & Strategy

 

Formative feedback

Culture & Strategy: linking culture with strategy.

The Cultural Web: using Johnson’s cultural web.

 

Johnson et al. (2017) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 12 and 11). Ch. 6.

 

(OR

 

Johnson et al. (2014) Exploring Strategy (Ed. 10). Pearson. Ch. 5.)

 

Activity to explore and prepare for the discussion:

Employability: Inform yourself about recent business news (BizNews) and prepare to briefly discuss these during this week’s seminar.

 

This week’s seminar is based on Barclays case (Johnson et. al. p187).

 

Seminar questions:

1) Use the elements of the cultural web to analyse the culture of Barclays’ investment banking business.

2) Has the organisational culture contributed to a unique advantage/core competence?  Or has it been responsible for significant barriers to change/strategic drift?

3) Do you see a link between strategy and culture? Which is driving the other?

Seminar activities

BizNews: Business stories you have noticed – what are the links to module topics?

 

In groups discuss and answer the following seminar questions:

Use the elements of the cultural web to analyse the culture of Barclays’ investment banking business.

2) Has the organisational culture contributed to a unique advantage/core competence?  Or has it been responsible for significant barriers to change/strategic drift?

3) Do you see a link between strategy and culture? Which is driving the other?

Share your findings with the rest of the class

What have you learnt about organisational culture? Why is culture important for strategy development an dimplementation?

11

 

11/4

Revision

Assessment guidelines and questions related to the module and assessment

 

 

 

 

Summative assessment submission: via Turnitin by 2:00pm on TBA!

 

 

 

 

 





 

Wk 7

14/3

INDEPENDENT STUDY WEEK

Use the Reading week to review module materials and specifically to begin addressing Q1 and Q2 of the assignment (Strategic Report).

 

 

 

 

               
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