Princeton University Company

B‌‌‍‌‌‍‍‌‍‌‍‍‍‍‍‌‌ased on the reading of Chapter 4 this week, please pick a well-known company. Use the content of the chapter and write a 500+ word narrative to evaluate t‌‌‍‌‌‍‍‌‍‌‍‍‍‍‍‌‌‍‌he Company’s strategy. You must address all 6 questions listed in the chapter for the Company that you choose. Due on BB on Sunday, June 7 at 14:59 pm. No Google docs, please.

The Company I want you to use is OLD SPIC‌‌‍‌‌‍‍‌‍‌‍‍‍‍‍‌‌‍‌E. The six strategy assessment questions listed in Chapter 4 are:

1. How well is the company’s present strategy working? This involves evaluating the strategy from a qualitative standpoint (completeness, internal consistency, rationale, and suitability to the situation) and also from a quantitative standpoint (the strategic and financial results the strategy is producing). The stronger a company’s current overall performance, the less likely the need for radical strategy changes. The weaker a company’s performance and/or the faster the changes in its external situation, the more its current strategy must be questioned.

2. What are the company’s important resources and capabilities, and do they have the competitive power to enable the company to produce a competitive advantage over rival companies? The task here is to identify the company’s most valuable resources and capabilities and to assess their competitive power using four tests. The degree of success a company enjoys in the marketplace is governed by the combined competitive power of its resources and capabilities. Executive attention to making sure a company always has competitively valuable resources and capabilities that dynamically evolve and help sustain the company’s competitiveness is a strategically important top management task.

3. What are the company’s competitively important strengths and weaknesses and how well-suited are they to capturing its best market opportunities and defending against the external threats to its future well-being? A SWOT analysis provides an overview of a firm’s situation and is an essential component of crafting a strategy that is well-suited to the company’s internal and external circumstances. The two most important parts of a SWOT analysis are (1) drawing conclusions about what story the compilation of strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats tells about the company’s overall situation, and (2) acting on those conclusions to better develop a strategy that satisfies the three requirements of a winning strategy: (1) fit the company’s internal and external situation, (2) help build competitive advantage, and (3) improve performance. A company’s most competitively potent resources and capabilities should be the foundation of its strategy. Using a company’s most potent resources and capabilities to power its strategy gives the company its best chance for market success, competitive advantage, and better performance. A well-conceived strategy must include actions to correct those competitive weaknesses that make the company vulnerable to attack from rivals, depress profitability, or disqualify it from pursuing a particularly attractive opportunity. Market opportunities and external threats come into play because fitting a company’s strategy to a company’s situation requires aiming an important portion of the company’s strategy at pursuing attractive market opportunities and defending against threats to its future profitability and well-being.

4. Are the company’s prices and costs competitive with those of key rivals, and does it have an appealing customer value proposition? The greater the value a company can profitably deliver to its customers relative to the value delivered by close rivals, the less competitively vulnerable it becomes. The higher a company’s costs relative to those of rivals delivering comparable customer value at a comparable price, the more competitively vulnerable it becomes. Value chain analysis and benchmarking are essential tools in determining how well a company is performing particular functions and activities, learning whether its costs are in line with competitors, and deciding which internal activities and business processes need to be scrutinized for improvement. Performing value chain activities in ways that give a company either a lower-cost advantage or a value-creating differentiation advantage over rivals are two surefire ways to create competitive advantage.

5. Is the company competitively stronger or weaker than key rivals? The key appraisals here involve how the company matches up against key rivals on industry key success factors and other chief determinants of competitive success and whether and why the company has a competitive advantage or disadvantage. Quantitative competitive strength assessments, using the method presented in Table 4.3, indicate where a company is competitively strong and weak, and provide insight into the company’s ability to defend or enhance its market position. As a rule, a company’s competitive strategy should be built around its competitive strengths and should aim at shoring up areas where it is competitively vulnerable. When a company has important competitive strengths in areas where one or more rivals are weak, it makes sense to consider offensive moves to exploit rivals’ competitive weaknesses. When a company has important competitive weaknesses in areas where one or more rivals are strong, it makes sense to consider defensive moves to curtail its vulnerability.

6. What strategic issues and problems does top management need to address in crafting a strategy to fit the situation? This analytical step zeros in on the strategic issues and problems that stand in the way of the company’s success. It involves drawing on the results of both the analysis of the company’s external environment and the evaluations of the company’s overall internal situation to compile a “worry list” of issues and problems that managers need to address and try to resolve in refurbishing the company’s strategy to better fit its overall situation. The worry list uses such language as “how to…,” “whether to…” and ‘what to do about…” to single out the specific strategy-related concerns that merit front-burner management attention. A company’s strategy is neither complete nor well matched to the particulars of its situation unless it contains actions and initiatives to address every issue or problem on the “worry list.”

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