1. List the top management of the firm and note what experience and leadership skills                     they bring to the firm.  If a larger conglomerate, list both corporate and business                                 managers.
  1. What is the principal business model of the firm?

(How does the firm make most of its profits?)

  1. Identify the major goals of the company.

Does the firm seem to have any longer-term challenging or stretch goals that would                    serve as its strategic intent?

  1. Trace any changes in strategy that you can identify over time. Try to determine                           whether the strategic changes of your selected firm are a result of intended strategies,                        emergent strategies, or some combination of both.
  1. How dynamic is the industry in which your company is based?  Is there evidence that                 industry structure is reshaping competition, or has done so in the recent past?
  1. A good place to start with an internal firm analysis is to catalog the assets a firm has.      Make a list of the firm’s tangible assets.  Then, make a separate list of the intangible

assets you can identify.

  1. Identify the core competencies that are at the heart of the firm’s competitive                               advantage.  (Remember, a firm will have only one, or at most a few, core                                         competencies, by definition.)
  1. Based on information in the annual reports or published on the firm’s website,                            summarize what the firm views as the reasons for its successes (either past or                                  expected in the future).  Search for both quantitative and qualitative success factors                    provided in the report.
  1. Does the firm seem most focused on the economic, accounting, or shareholder

perspective of its competitive advantage?  Give quotes or information from these

sources to support your view.

  1. What suggestions do you have to improve the firm’s business strategy and strategic             position?
  1. Is your firm highly vertically integrated?
  1. Use the preceding vertical value chain to identify the corporate strategy of the firm. In             other words, where within the industry has the firm chosen to compete?
  1. Has your firm participated in any mergers or acquisitions in the past three years?                                   What was the nature of these actions?  Did they result in a consolidation of                              competitors?
  1. Research what strategic alliances your firm has entered in the past three years. Based                on company press releases and business journal reports for each alliance, what do you                      find to be the main reason the firm entered these alliances?
  1. Do you think each of the three alliances achieves the original intent, and therefore is                    successful?  Why or why not?

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