Write a 4–6-page business analysis of your selected firm’s business strategy. Notes: The assessments in this course are sequenced in such a way as to help you build specific skills that you will use throughout your program. Complete the assessments in the order in which they are presented. As a business professional, you will need to understand business strategy—the means by which organizations or individuals achieve their business objectives. This assessment allows you to practice analyzing the business strategy of a specific firm. By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and assessment criteria: o Competency 1: Apply strategic theories, models, and best practices to understand and explain an organization’s strategy. § Explain the generic business strategies for the selected firm. § Analyze what business strategies the firm is using in their marketplace approach. o Competency 2: Analyze the fit of the internal elements (resources, capabilities, goals, structures, systems, and values) with the organizational strategy. § Analyze the firm’s business model. o Competency 4: Communicate in a manner that is professional and consistent with expectations for members of the business professions. § Write coherently to support a central idea (in appropriate APA format) with correct grammar, usage, and mechanics as expected of a business professional. Context Grant and Jordan (2015) say that strategy is not a detailed plan or set of instructions; instead, strategy is the means by which organizations or individuals achieve their objectives. In order to achieve objectives, firms have a value proposition—a product or service that is being offered in the market to meet customers’ needs or perceived needs. How the firm goes about delivering the value proposition is what Grant and Jordan call a business strategy, or a competitive advantage. Elements of an effective business strategy include a company’s products and the markets in which these products will compete. Cost leadership and differentiation are two generic types of business strategies, but some firms may use a combination of these, referred to as a hybrid business strategy. Porter (1996) argues that for businesses to prosper, even nonprofit organizations, they must have a business strategy that fits into these three generic types. Successful firms also develop business models as part of an overall business strategy. These business models describe how the firm will create competitive advantage through the way it executes its business strategy with buyers, suppliers, and key alliance partners. References Grant, R. M., & Jordan, J. (2015). Foundations of strategy (2nd ed.). West Sussex, UK: John Wiley & Sons. Porter, M. E. (1996). What is strategy? Harvard Business Review, 76(1), 61–78. Questions to Consider As you prepare to complete this assessment, you may want to think about other related issues to deepen your understanding or broaden your viewpoint. You are encouraged to consider the questions below and discuss them with a fellow learner, a work associate, an interested friend, or a member of your professional community. Note that these questions are for your own development and exploration and do not need to be completed or submitted as part of your assessment. Examining the following questions can help you better understand a firm’s business strategy: o Does the company specifically identify their generic strategy? o What seem to be the major points of differentiation for the products or services that the company delivers? o What specific features, benefits, or drivers of buyer value in this product market seem most worth paying for? o What seem to be the company’s major cost drivers or the things that have the biggest impact on company costs? o Does there seem to be an experience curve or any especially important opportunities for scale and scope advantages for this company? Resources Suggested Resources Case Study You have the option to purchase the following case study to use for this course, or you may do your own research on other companies. See the assessment instructions for details. o Bhatnagar, M. (2014). Walgreen’s: Strategic restructuring for sustained growth. Amity Research Centre. Retrieved from http://www.thecasecentre.org/students/products/view?id=119840 Capella Resources Click the link provided for more background on your selected firm: o Firm Research Information [DOC]. Capella University Library Resources o Peteraf, M. A. (1993). The cornerstones of competitive advantage: A resource-based view. Strategic Management Journal, 14(3), 179–191. o Bashir, M., & Verma, R. (2017). Why business model innovation is the new competitive advantage. IUP Journal Of Business Strategy, 15(1), 7–17. Harvard Business Review Articles The following readings are available from the Harvard Business Review. Search for the articles by following the instructions in the Library Guide: o Capron, L., & Mitchell, W. (2010). Finding the right path. Harvard Business Review, 88(7/8), 102–107. o Christensen, C. M., Raynor, M., & McDonald, R. (2015). What is disruptive innovation? Harvard Business Review, 93(12), 44–53. o Drucker, P. F. (1994). The theory of the business. Harvard Business Review, 72(5), 95–104. o Ghemawat, P. (2007). Managing differences: The central challenge of global strategy. Harvard Business Review, 85(3), 58–68. o Hamel, G., & Prahalad, C. K. (2005). Strategic intent. Harvard Business Review, 83(7/8), 148–161. o Hargadon, A., & Sutton, R. I. (2000). Building an innovation factory. Harvard Business Review, 78(3), 157–166. o Johnson, M. W., Christensen, C. M., & Kagermann, H. (2008). Reinventing your business model. Harvard Business Review, 86(12), 50–59. o Kiechel III, W. (2012). The management century. Harvard Business Review, 90(11), 62–75. o Kim, W. C., & Mauborgne, R. (2004). Blue ocean strategy. Harvard Business Review, 82(10), 76–84. o Lafley, A. G., Martin, R. L., Rivkin, J. W., & Siggelkow, N. (2012). Bringing science to the art of strategy. Harvard Business Review, 90(9), 56–66. o Martin, R. (2002). The virtue matrix: Calculating the return on corporate responsibility. Harvard Business Review, 80(3), 68–75. o Pisano, G. P., & Shih, W. C. (2012). Does America really need manufacturing? Harvard Business Review, 90(3), 94–102. o Porter, M. E. (1996). What is strategy? Harvard Business Review, 76(1), 61–78. o Porter, M. E., & Kramer, M. R. (2011). Creating shared value. Harvard Business Review, 89(1/2), 62–77. Bookstore Resources The following resource is available for purchase from the Capella University Bookstore. o Grant, R. M., & Jordan, J. (2015). Foundations of strategy (2nd ed.). West Sussex, UK: Wiley and Sons. § Chapter 1, ‘The Concept of Strategy.’ § Chapter 4, ‘The Nature and Sources of Competitive Advantage.’ · Assessment Instructions Note: The assessments in this course are sequenced in such a way as to help you build specific skills that you will use throughout your program. Complete the assessments in the order in which they are presented. Preparation For the assessments in this course, select one of the companies from the list below to be your focus: o Ford: Ford is a complex multinational organization that has recently focused on strategic initiatives to address production capacity, supply chain reliability, sustainability, and technological innovation in order to remain competitive in the rapidly changing automotive industry. o Procter and Gamble: This is a huge multinational firm with products you probably buy every day. This business is interesting because the company is focusing on science and technology to help it revise many of its business strategies and contribute to overall company goals for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. o Virgin Group: This company is an interesting one because of its high profile owner, Sir Richard Branson, and the many widely diversified companies that are part of the Virgin Group. o Walgreen’s: The #1 drugstore chain in the United States, Walgreen’s operates approximately 8,300 stores in the United States, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico. Note: A Walgreen’s case study is available for purchase for your use in this course. See the Suggested Resources for more information. o Build Your Own Case: Create a strategic case on the company of your choice. The company must be publicly traded, have multiple strategic business units (a corporation), and be approved by faculty. Review the resources available in the Company Research Information document (in the Suggested Resources) for understanding the organization, and begin researching the firm’s business strategy and business model. Use additional resources from the Capella University Library or your own research as needed. Find at least four current, scholarly, or professional resources for this assessment. Overview The vice president of corporate strategy at the headquarters of your selected firm—Ford, Procter and Gamble, Virgin Group, Walgreen’s or a firm of your choice—has requested that you provide her with a business analysis of your key findings regarding the firm’s business strategy: o An overview of the generic strategy that seems to best describe the company’s strategic approach. o A discussion of key elements in the overall business strategy. o A review of the most important components of the company’s business model. Requirements In 4–6 pages, provide a business analysis of the firm you selected. Your analysis should do all of the following: o Explain the generic business strategies, including cost, differentiation, and focus or hybrid information, for the selected firm. o Analyze what business strategies the firm is using in their marketplace approach. Provide examples of how they use the strategy to position itself in a competitive environment. o Analyze the firm’s business model. § What are their core products? § How does the firm make money? § What is the customer value proposition? § What is the profit proposition? Use clear headings and subheadings to organize the key points of your analysis. Your report should be clearly written and communicate effectively to organizational leadership; use correct grammar, spelling and mechanics as expected of a business professional. Cite and reference all sources using current APA style. Additional Requirements o References: Support your business analysis with at least four academic resources from the Capella University Library. o APA Style: Use proper APA style for all citations and references. o Length: The body of the business analysis must be 4–6 double-spaced, typed pages, not including the references list. o Written communication: Demonstrate graduate-level writing skills through accurate communication of thoughts that convey the overall goals of the analysis and do not detract from the message. o Font: Times New Roman, 12 point.