Below are the essay questions for your second exam. The exam is intended for you to work independently. You may, however, use your team’s data from the work you have done to date.
Each question is worth a total of 25 points. Please answer each question as thoroughly as possible, providing rich detail from our lectures, readings, and discussions. The organization of your answers, the complexity of your analysis, and the clarity of your critical thinking are the key elements of your evaluation .
1. On Strategy Implementation – Performance Excellence
We discussed at length the idea of Six Sigma as a way to create synergy across the organization, to increase the probability of mission buy-in as well as the effective alignment of resources, and, most fundamentally, the production of near perfect output of product and service. Discuss the following in detail:
1. What does Six Sigma mean to someone like Jack Welch? Be detailed in your response.
i. Provide an example how GE uses the concept to improve performance. Pull from Winning
to support your answer (Welch dedicates an entire chapter on six sigma).
ii. What is one strength and weakness of this widely subscribed philosophy?
2. Lastly, pertaining to your CEO company, identify the ONE burning issue that is a prime candidate for continuous improvement – that one thing holding the firm back from implementing good strategy (remember good strategy clearly defines the obstacles from which we must overcome – bad strategy does not)
2. On Strategic Intent and Strategy Implementation
1. First, identify your CEO company’s strategic intent, that is, the ambitious stretch targets that go beyond corporate vision propelling the firm to win. Pull from the readings to support your response
2. Second, identify and discuss the important components of your strategy’s implementation – mainly the
who, what, how:
i. Who are the central players/managers who will carry out your strategic recommendations?
ii. What must be done – describe the program that is (or needs to be) in place to carry out your strategic recommendations?
iii. How will everyone work together – what organizational structure will work best and why?
3. On Evaluation and Control
Referring to the Balanced Scorecard’s key measurement concepts, illustrate and discuss the following:
1. Using the traditional model from Kaplan and Norton customize your team company’s BSC model by identifying and completing ONE objective you will ‘measure’ for each scorecard component. Discuss in detail.
2. Additionally, provide a basic, yet customized, illustrative model of your BSC to complement your response.
4. On the Journey –
1. And, lastly, why does strategy matter? Be specific and brilliant.
i. Consider including the key ‘take-aways’ from the course from the readings, lectures, discussions, team work, etc.
i Recommendations on excellence – ten pages is your minimum target; dig deep into the readings and language of our text and lectures; provide unique insight, reach for high-level presentation and formatting; use 12-point, Times New Roman font; pay attention to details; use end-notes to cite your sources from your readings. For example, at the end of a sentence that you either cite directly or summarize, you will insert an end-note such as this one. The end-note simply needs to indicate the author and page number such as, Wheelen and Hunger, p. 82; put some time into this assignment; teach me something new.