Import plan

Authentic Assessment: Strategic Plan Project – Due Sunday, December 16, 2012

This authentic assessment is a comprehensive paper in which you will create astrategic planfor an existing product or service that your multinational employer wants to launch into a foreign country. Your paper should draw from the information in your textbook— specifically, from chapters 6 and 7—as well as from the outline provided below, plus relevant external resources.
Please choose an existing product or service currently being sold. Then, choose the country into which you will launch this product or service. You will need to provide both the name of the product or service and the country you have chosen to meby the end of the second week of class.
Hint:Choosing a well-known product or service will give you access to more information than choosing an obscure product or service.

What is Strategic Planning?

The termstrategic planningrefers to a coordinated and systematic process for charting the overall course and direction of an enterprise or organization for the purpose of optimizing potential. For a profit-making business, this process involves questions such as “What should we sell?” “To whom should we sell it?” and “How can we beat or avoid the competition?” Strategic planning can also involve other questions, such as of ownership and capital structure.
The main purpose of the strategic planning process is to ensure that the course and direction of the enterprise or organization are well-thought-out, sound, and appropriate, and to ensure that the limited resources of the enterprise or organization (time and resources) are sharply focused in support of the course and direction. The strategic planning process involves both strategy formulation and strategy implementation.
As director of your corporation’s strategic planning department, you have been asked by your CEO to devise a viable strategy to launch your product or service into the country of your choice. In order to complete the plan and convince your CEO of the efficacy of your strategy, you will need to provide the following sections of a strategic plan:

1. External Situation/Environmental Assessment

a. market segment analysis:Such an analysis helps you to determine your best market opportunities, how to focus your marketing efforts to make the most of those opportunities, and how to attain dominant market position in niches. It helps to tailor your strategies to each segment of the market. For each segment, consider the following:

    • needs served
    • market preferences
    • size and growth rate of the market
    • your company’s share in the market
    • number of potential customers
    • significant recent events that could impact your offering

b. competitive evaluation:This section should include the number of competitors in the market and their market share. Evaluate both direct and indirect competitors, providing the following in your analysis:

    • total scope of competitive offerings
    • competing products or services and the market segments in which you will compete against each vendor, with a list of the benefits for customers from your product or service
    • financial information
    • SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats)
    • competitors’ strategies

c. technology assessment:Such an assessment informs you on the state of technology in the environment in which your business operates. Include this information only if technology is important in your industry. If it is, examine efficiency, costs, and availability. Be sure to include both the technology you use and the technology you provide.
d. supplier markets assessment:This section should examine inputs to your business. Suppliers are not only vendors of merchandise, materials, and supplies, but also those who provide labor, benefits, and access to key skills. Only evaluate those markets in which quality, price, or availability has an important impact on your business. Look at such factors as volume and trends, buyer and seller concentration, significant recent events, and capacity use.
e. current economic situation:Include details on the economic situation of the country into which you are launching your product or service. Only include information relevant to your business.
f. significant government regulations:Discuss any regulations of particular importance to your business. Remember to include not only the regulations that could inhibit your business, but those that could be advantageous.

2. Internal Situation

a. corporate mission statement:Provide your company’s mission statement.
b. key corporate strengths:What does your company do well? What is it known for within the industry? Key areas most often identified include management, human resources, capital resources, competitive advantages, customer satisfaction, marketing/sales performance, costs/pricing, and innovation. Identify at least three areas of strength in your corporation.
c. key corporate weaknesses:Upon which areas could your company improve to make it more competitive? Identify at least three areas of weakness in your corporation.

3. Assumptions

a. assumptions for targeted market segment:In this section, include the following types of information:

    • threats to the market:What factors might cause the total market to shrink? These are factors that affect the entire market and are not specific to your business.
    • competitive assumptions for targeted market segment:In this section, identify the key strategic moves you expect each competitor to make over the short term (1–2 years) and long term (3–4 years). Include such moves as changes in strategic focus, development of competencies or technologies, and changes in distribution channel. Do not overlook possible competitive exits and entries.

b. other important assumptions:Consider key assumptions about your product or service, such as those related to

    • technology:If technology is important to your industry, make assumptions regarding future developments or the lack thereof. As in the technology assessment, focus your comments on efficiency, costs, and availability.
    • supplier markets:Make assumptions regarding future developments in supplier markets where price, quality, and/or availability has an important impact on your business. As in the supplier markets assessment, focus your comments on volume, buyer and seller concentration, significant events, and capacity utilization. Also include price and availability forecasts.
    • economy:Make assumptions about future general economic conditions (e.g., gross national product [GNP], inflation, employment). Also, make assumptions about price and activity levels in key markets served.
    • government regulations:List and describe any changes in regulations that you expect to be of particular importance to your business.

4. Opportunity Screening

a. perceived opportunities:In this section, list all potential opportunities, including those related to new market development, new product development, new distribution channels, and new pricing. Consider developments outside your market area, such as in productivity, finances, management, and personnel. Categorize each perceived opportunity aspoor,sound, orunclear. Evaluate the opportunities for both the short term (1–2 years) and the long term (3–4 years).
b. perceived threats:In this section, list those events and developments that could threaten the wellbeing of your business. Discuss the potential impact and the probability of each occurrence over the short term (1–2 years) and the long term (3–4 years).

5. Market Entry

a. market approachHow will you approach your target market? Will you use a

    • global approach
    • regional/local approach
    • integrative approach
    • e-business approach

See pages 210–217 in your text for more information about these alternatives. Provide a thorough and detailed rationale for your choice.
b. entrance strategiesHow will you enter your chosen country? You could do this via

    • exporting
    • franchising
    • contract manufacturing
    • offshoring
    • outsourcing
    • turnkey operations
    • management contracts
    • joint ventures
    • fully owned subsidiaries
    • e-business

See pages 217–233 in your text for more information about these alternatives. Provide a thorough and detailed rationale for your choice.

6. Conclusions

a. measures of success:What does success look like for your product or service? Typical measures include

    • financial measures:How do you look to the owners or shareholders? Typical measures include sales (in units and/or dollars), cash flow, profitability, growth, market share, break-even, receivables, debt level, margins, and shareholder value.
    • customer measures:How do your customers see you? Typical measures include number of customers, customer satisfaction index, repeat orders, price levels, external quality, percent on time, and backlog.
    • internal measures:How are you managing your day-to-day activities? Typical measures include orders/inquiries, productivity, efficiency, capacity utilization, cycle time, cost level, internal quality, warranty cost, backlog, and employee skill level.
    • measures of innovation/learning:How are you improving and learning to create value? This is an area that is infrequently measured but that is key to companies’ continued success and the renewal of their businesses. Some useful measures are sales from new products, employee training, process development time, product introduction time, total cost of quality, and average patent age.

b. Will your strategic plan ultimately succeed?In your opinion, will your plan succeed? Based on all the data you collected and the analysis you conducted, do you think your plan will bring your company the intended results?
c. supporting arguments:Why or why not?
There are additional pieces to a corporate strategic plan. These include

    • budget
      • operating budget
      • investment budget
      • cash flow budget
      • five-year operating budget
  • goals, objectives, and vision
    • corporate goals
    • corporate objectives
    • corporate vision
  • action plans
    • action items
    • named personnel involved
    • time (days)
    • budget
    • start/completion dates
  • schedules and agenda
    • time worksheet
    • personal annual schedule
    • planning schedule
    • planning agenda

    We included this additional information so that you would have a comprehensive overview of the strategic planning process. However, because this information is typically company confidential,you will not be responsible for providing it as part of your strategic plan. You will only be responsible for the numbered sections outlined above.

In completing this assignment, please include only information pertinent to your goals. For example, if you are planning to set up a fully owned subsidiary in Argentina to sell specialty chocolates, do not include details about Argentina’s bauxite reserves. You may discuss Argentina’s climate or tourism industry, but only as they relate to your specialty chocolates and your strategic plan for launching this product into Argentina.

Grammar and Organization

Try to ensure the following:

  • timeliness of project submission (There will be a 10 percent penalty per day for late submissions).
  • good sentence and paragraph structure
  • clarity of expression and presentation of ideas
  • grammatically correct construction and correct spelling and punctuation

Documentation and Formatting

Please conform to the standards of formatting and documentation, including proper citations and references as shown in the American Psychological Association (APA) style manual.
Provide your paper in narrative format, not in outline or question/answer format.Include a cover page with the name of the project, your name, the course designator, and the date.
Note: I reserve the right to reformat papers to bring them in line with these requirements:

  • The strategic plan should be 14–15 pages in length. Minimum 14 pages means 14 full pages and not 14 and one-half pages. All information in the paper must be relevant to the issues you are required to cover.
  • The paper should be typed, double-spaced, in 12-point Arial or Times New Roman font, with one-inch margins all around.
  • No outline or bullet formats will be accepted. The paper must be in narrative format.
  • The paper must be prepared using a Word processing software (submit paper in Linux ODT, rtf, or Microsoft Word), as well as a PDF file (please see my comments under “Course-related Q&A” in the Conferences for more detail about this).
  • Footnotes are mandatory. Include only the author name and page number in the body of paper (e.g., Smith, p. 44). Do not put the full footnote at end of the page, but at the end of the paper.
  • The body of the paper should not include pictures, graphs, or lists. If you need these to support your facts, place them at the end of the paper as an addendum, referenced in the body of the paper. They will not count toward your page length.
  • The paper should have a references list for all sources used in the preparation of the project, including for each entry the author, title, publisher, city and state of publisher, year of publication, and either page numbers or URL of the material referenced (do not use Wikipedia).
  • The paper should be posted in the Assignments area of the classroom as an attachment.

Strategic Plan Grading Rubric

PAPER COMPONENTS DOES NOT MEET EXPECTATIONS MINIMALLY MEETS EXPECTATIONS MEETS EXPECTATIONS FINAL STUDENT SCORE
EXTERNAL SITUATION/ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT 0–5 POINTS 6–10 POINTS 11–15 POINTS 0–15 POINTS
Includes market segment analysis, competitive evaluation, technology assessment, supplier markets assessment, information on current economic situation, and significant government regulations Does not discuss external situation or only discusses it minimally Provides discussion of external situation that is unclear, confusing, or contradictory; neglects to include some components outlined in the paper requirements Provides clear and comprehensive discussion of all elements of external situation as they relate to your strategic plan
INTERNAL SITUATION 0–5 POINTS 6–10 POINTS 11–15 POINTS 0–15 POINTS
Includes details of your company’s mission statement, key strengths, and key weaknesses Does not discuss internal situation or only discusses it minimally Provides discussion of internal situation that is unclear, confusing, or contradictory; neglects to include some components outlined in the paper requirements; identifies fewer than three strengths and three weaknesses Provides clear and comprehensive discussion of all elements of internal situation as they relate to your strategic plan; identifies three or more strengths and three or more weaknesses
ASSUMPTIONS 0–3 POINTS 4–7 POINTS 8–10 POINTS 0–10 POINTS
Includes details of your assumptions for your market segment and other important and relevant assumptions Does not discuss key assumptions or only discusses them minimally Provides discussion of key assumptions that is unclear, confusing, or contradictory; neglects to include some components outlined in the paper requirements Provides clear and comprehensive discussion of key assumptions as they relate to your strategic plan
OPPORTUNITY SCREENING 0–3 POINTS 4–7 POINTS 8–10 POINTS 0–10 POINTS
Includes a detailed discussion of perceived opportunities and threats related to your strategic plan Does not discuss perceived opportunities and threats or only discusses them minimally Provides discussion of perceived opportunities and threats that is unclear, confusing, or contradictory; neglects to include some potential opportunities or threats Provides clear and comprehensive discussion of perceived opportunities and threats as they relate to your strategic plan
MARKET ENTRY 0–7 POINTS 8–13 POINTS 14–20 POINTS 0–20 POINTS
Includes a detailed discussion of strategic alternatives for approaching your target market and a discussion of strategic entry, with a thorough and detailed rationale for each choice Does not discuss strategic approach alternatives or strategic entry, or only discusses them minimally Provides discussion of strategic approach alternatives and strategic entry that is unclear, confusing, or contradictory; neglects to include a thorough and detailed rationale for each choice Provides clear and comprehensive discussion of strategic approach alternatives and strategic entry as they relate to your strategic plan
CONCLUSIONS 0–3 POINTS 4–7 POINTS 8–10 POINTS 0–10 POINTS
Includes a detailed discussion of measures of success, along with a detailed analysis as to why your strategic plan will succeed or fail; includes solid supporting arguments to make your case Does not discuss measures of success or why your strategic plan will succeed or fail, or only discusses them minimally Provides discussion of measures of success that is unclear, confusing, or contradictory; neglects to state why you believe your strategic plan will succeed or fail and/or neglects to provide convincing supporting arguments Provides clear and comprehensive discussion of measures of success and why you believe your strategic plan will succeed or fail; includes solid arguments that help make your case
INFORMATION LITERACY 0–3 POINTS 4–7 POINTS 8–10 POINTS 0–10 POINTS
Demonstrates use of libraries and other information sources to locate, select, and evaluate information for your strategic plan Uses fewer than four valid sources other than the assigned text Uses four to seven valid sources other than the assigned text Uses eight or more valid sources other than the assigned text
FORMATTING/SPELLING/SOURCING 0–3 POINTS 4–7 POINTS 8–10 POINTS 0–10 POINTS
Is proofread, edited, and free of overt grammatical and typographical errors; adheres to submission requirements; includes references and bibliography Does not meet submission requirements; does not use appropriate tone and/or style for audience; has proofreading and/or grammatical errors that detract from the readability of the paper; has major problems in sentence structure; does not include citations or references Meets submission requirements for the most part; uses tone and style that are generally appropriate for audience; contains noticeable proofreading and/or grammatical errors (however, the errors do not detract from the readability of the paper); may have rigid or unvarying sentence structure; includes partial citations and references Fully meets submission requirements; uses tone and style appropriate for audience; contains no noticeable proofreading or grammatical errors; uses effective and diverse sentence structures and diction; includes complete citations and references
TOTAL 0–100 POINTS

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