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Strategy I

Apply your knowledge in the context of real business.

An organization lives and dies on its actions — or inactions. A company’s overarching strategy is not just a tool used to reach corporate goals. Strategy is, in fact, the backbone of an organization.

In BUS 651 Strategy I, you’ll appreciate how the successful execution of a business’s strategy is the difference between its life and extinction. You’ll focus on intensive case studies that require you to apply your new knowledge in the context of a real business, assuming the role of a business leader in a complex world.

You’ll begin by taking an in-depth look at strategy — from its key characteristics to the tools employed in design and implementation. One sample learning exercise includes examining challenges faced by real companies such as Starbucks, United Airlines, Tough Mudder, and British Petroleum.

In discovering what makes companies competitive in their industry and/or the marketplace, you’ll consider how your organization’s resources and capabilities can impact its competitiveness and overall strategy. You’ll also become familiar with how strategies are formulated to exploit internal strengths and defend against weaknesses.

A business’s structure influences its strategy implementation. You’ll examine various organizational structures to see how strategic planning links to operational planning, performance management, and resource allocation in implementing strategy. You’ll also evaluate the key success factors associated with industries at different stages of their development and recommend strategies, organizational structures, and management systems appropriate to these stages.

Sample Topics

Throughout this course, you’ll focus on core topics or themes.

  • What Is Strategy?
  • Competitive Analysis, Resources, and Capabilities
  • Organization Structure and Competitive Advantage
  • Evolution, Technology, and Innovation

Sample Assignment

Working as a team, you’ll prepare an in-depth case presentation video based on a real business scenario. In presenting your video to the class, your team will function as experts on the case and must be able to defend positions and arguments when questioned by peers.

Learning Outcomes

In BUS 651, you’ll master key skills that will help you design successful business strategies.

  1. Recognize the main structural features of an industry and understand how they impact the intensity of competition and the overall level of profitability in the industry.
  2. Create strategies that position the firm most favorably in relation to competition and influence industry structure in order to enhance industry attractiveness.
  3. Examine how strategic planning links to operational planning, performance management, and resource allocation in implementing strategy.
  4. Evaluate corporate strategy decisions using basic techniques of portfolio analysis.

Programs that include this course