General Education

UOP BUS475 All Weeks Supporting Activities

BUS475 Integrated Business Topics

Week 1 Supporting Activity

Strategic Management

What is strategic management, what is its purpose, and why is it necessary?  What are the components of a strategic plan?  Which is most important?  Why?

Mission Statement and Your Organization

Locate the mission statement of the company you are using for your week 1 individual assignment. Where did you find it? Was it presented as a consolidated statement, or were you forced to assemble it yourself from various publications of the firm?  Begin thinking about the mission statement you will develop for your new division (week 2 assignment).  How will you ensure it is aligned?

Organizational Culture

Three key activities (setting a direction, designing the organization, and nurturing a culture and ethics) are part of effective leaders' routinely activities.  Explain how these 3 activities are inter-related.

Values and Guiding Principles

What are values? How are they formed, developed, and possibly change over time? What values / guiding principles / behaviors will you expect from employees in your new division?  (Hint:  Feel free to use your response as part of your Week 2 individual assignment.)


BUS475 Integrated Business Topics

Week 2 Supporting Activity

Relationships/Partnerships: Extending the Supply Chain

While the focus of the video was on products, what about the service sector?  How could you use supply chain to your benefit?

Internal Assessment Factors

As it relates to internal assessment factors, typical factors to assess include strategy, structures, processes and systems, resources, goals, strategic capabilities, culture, technologies, innovation, intellectual property and leadership.? Class, of the above internal assessment factors, which do you see as having most importance for your new product or service? Please explain your selection.

SWOT Analysis

What is SWOT analysis?  What is its purpose in strategic planning?  Must you conduct a SWOT analysis to have an effective strategic plan?  Why or why not?

Culture – Considerations in the Global Environment

Oftentimes, I believe, employees would be better served if management got out of their way and let them do the things they do best.  Of course, Mr. Stewart provided the strategy, but left it up to the employees to carry it out. What is your opinion on this approach? Advantages / disadvantages?


BUS475 Integrated Business Topics

Week 3 Supporting Activity

Strategic Objectives

What are strategic objectives?  What is the purpose of strategic objectives? What makes a strategic objective effective? What are examples of strategic objectives for your organization or one with which you are familiar?

Three Generic Strategies

Briefly describe the three generic strategies – overall cost leadership, differentiation, and focus. Which strategy is the best fit for your new division?

Shareholder Value

Discuss some of the actions that managers may engage in to erode shareholder value.  As the manager of your new division, how will you prevent these occurrences?

Value Creation and Diversification

Discuss how managers can create value for their firm through diversification efforts.

International Market Expansion

What are some of the advantages and disadvantages associated with a firm's expansion into international markets?

 Expansion Strategies

There are four basic strategies – international, global, multidomestic, and transnational. What are the advantages and disadvantages associated with each?


BUS475 Integrated Business Topics

Week 4 Supporting Activity

Spotlight Strategy

As it relates to strategy, you might find this (spotlight strategy 1.2) particularly interesting.  It has relevance, I believe, for any organization, as it described being alert and taking time to recognize any opportunities beyond the confines of one's job.

Leadership Characteristics   –  Class, seven attributes that enable good leadership have been described–vision, performance, principles, education of subordinates, perseverance, passion, and leader selection/development. Which one have you found to be the most meaningful to you in the leaders you respond to the best?

Communications and Strategic Plan

Class, has your current (or former) organization's strategic plan been communicated to you?  If so, how and by whom?  If not, how would such communication improve your organizational effectiveness?  Is it important for employees to know the strategic plan of a company?  Why or why not?

Fostering Innovation

Class, considering products where the life cycle is nearing an end, having a pipeline of innovative, new products and services may be critical to organizational viability.

All, does your organization (or one you are familiar with) have an environment that supports perceived opportunities and allows one to fail?  Please explain

Performance Management Systems and Process

Class, the speaker in this video has many years of experience in implementing and assessing performance management systems. 

All, considering the performance management system in place at your current (or former) employer, do you believe the system is effective?  Why/why not?


BUS475 Integrated Business Topics

Week 5 Supporting Activity

Just for Fun – Part 1

If you could meet any business leader in the world, from any time period, whom would you select?  Why would you want to meet this person?  What questions would you ask him/her?  What could this person teach us that would be helpful today?

Just for Fun – Part 2

Knowing that strategic planning is the ability to evaluate the past, understand the present, and predict the future, which one do you think most executives have more trouble with:  evaluating the past, understanding the present or predicting the future? Why?

Communications and Strategic Plan

Describe traditional control systems and contemporary control systems.  What are the main differences between these two systems? What are the main advantages of the contemporary control system over traditional?

Strategic Decision-Making

Strategic management case analysis is one method of learning how companies analyze problems, make decisions, and resolve challenges. Describe the five steps involved in conducting a case analysis.  Who has responsibility for ensuring effective strategic decisions are being made?  Who has accountability?

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