Theory and practice of businesses
Learning outcomes evidenced by this assessment:
- Explain the theory and practice of businesses
- Describe a range of current problems and changes that organizations face in being successful
- Critically evaluate research and theory to support decision-making and explain progress
- Analyse complex issues, make reasoned judgments with incomplete data, and communicate conclusions clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences
Subject-based practical skills
- Students will discuss good practice for organization success
- Undertake a critical audit of skills and capabilities for a professional career and identify areas required for improvement
Skills for life and work (general skills)
- Developing and communicating critical evaluations of organization progress
- Working effectively in teams
Individual essay overview
The individual essay is comprised of two parts: A and B. Part A is the strategy paper. Part B is the reflection. Both parts are worth 100% and must be submitted as one piece of coursework.
Part A: Strategy Paper
Drawing on the business simulation activity you have been managing your company for at least 5 years. You are now reviewing and presenting your future plans for the company. You are required to evaluate the success of your strategy and make recommendations for future plans. You are required to prepare and carry out a Board 5-year strategy review presentation to the shareholders.
Part A Strategy Paper should cover the following points each of which bears a credit:
- Key messagesPart A should include:
- Vision and strategy (e.g. vision, values, mission, HR, culture) (20%)
- Review of each year’s progress including (20%)
- Competitor analysis: Porter’s five forces; Market share; product/ price analysis; competitors; competencies and capabilities
- Performance results
Performance analysis (evaluation of strategy, decisions – Marketing / HR/ Logistics / Accounting / Product development / Event response etc)
- Future plans and recommendations(10%) (key decisions for next 5 years, identify any changes to current strategy, why and how achieve; recommendations – based on your performance and analysis, potential growth – internationalisation/ diversification or acquisition)
Further details concerning Part A Strategy Paper:
- Assess the success of the strategy or strategies compared to industry conditions and competitors.
- Analyse company performance e.g. comparing actual performance with targets in Business Plan, financial data analysis, decision analysis and justification of performance measures and strategy, application of business scorecard etc.
Performance analysis further details:
- Explain why business plan achieved/ missed, why performance better/worse than competitors
- Explain differences from competitors/ industry
- Explain any changes made to business plan and company, why, any impact.
Part B: Reflection
Your annual Performance Development Review is approaching. You are keen to reflect on how working in the team compares to what you have learnt on your previous MBA course and your understanding of how companies perform in your industry. You are required to prepare a report that covers research into one or two events in your simulation team.
This should cover:
- Executive summary
- Identified events
- Review of relevant theory / theories / concepts
- Review of industry practices
- Application of theory and practices
- Recommendations for practice and research
Your individual report should be prepared as explained in the assessment and uploaded to the appropriate Turnitin link available on the module’s Moodle site. A cover page, which will be provided on the module’s Moodle site, should be included as part of the submission.
Written feedback will be provided via Turnitin within 15 working days of submission.
Structure and presentation
Your work should be word processed in accordance with the following:
Font size 12, using a sans serif font such as Arial or similar
1.5 line spacing
The page orientation should be ‘portrait’ (large diagrams and tables can be in landscape orientation if that enables them to fit on fewer pages)
Margins on both sides of the page should be no less than 2 cm
Pages should be numbered
Your name should not appear on the script
Your student number should be included on every page.
Marking Criteria-Theory and practice of businesses
Part A: Vision and Strategy 20%
Part A: Review of each year’s progress including 20%
Part A: Future plans and recommendations 10%
Part B: Review of theory and practice 20%
Part B: Application and discussion 20%
Part B: Structure (Executive Summary, Introduction, 10%
Identified Events, Recommendations)
Harvard reference system to be followed