Strategic Management and Competitive Forces

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COMPETITION IN THE GOLF INDUSTRY (WEEK 7)
1. What is competition like in the golf equipment industry? What competitive forces seem to have the greatest effect on industry attractiveness?

2. How is the golf equipment industry changing? What are the underlying drivers of change and how might those driving forces change the industry?

3. What does your strategic group map of the golf equipment industry look like? Which strategic groups do you think are in the best positions? Which are in the worst positions?

4. What recommendations would you make to Callaway Golf to improve the company’s competitive position in the industry and its financial and market performance?

NINTENDO (WEEK 7)

1. What is competition like in the video game console industry? Do a five-forces analysis to support your answer. Which of the five competitive forces is strongest? Which is weakest? Would you characterize the overall strength of competition in video game consoles as fierce, strong, moderate to normal or weak? Why?

2. What is Nintendo’s strategy? Which of the five generic strategies discussed in Chapter 5 is Nintendo using?

3. Is it fair to characterize Nintendo’s introduction of the Wii as a blue ocean strategy? Why or why not?

4. What recommendations would you make to Nintendo to improve its competitiveness in the video game console industry and to maintain its favorable positioning vis-à-vis Microsoft and Sony?

GOOGLE (WEEK 8)

1. Discuss competition in the search industry. Which of the fi ve competitive forces seem strongest? weakest? What is your assessment of overall industry attractiveness?

2. What are the key factors that define success in the industry? What are the key competencies, capabilities, and resources of successful search engine companies?

3. Have Google’s business model and strategy proven to be successful? What are the company’s key resource strengths and competitive capabilities? What competitive liabilities and resource weaknesses does it have?

4. What recommendations would you make to Google’s top-management team to sustain its competitive advantage in the search industry? How should it best capitalize on its strategic initiatives in mobile search, cloud computing, and its auctioning system for traditional media ads?

RESEARCH IN MOTION (WEEK 8)

1. What is competition like in the wireless phone industry? Which of the five Competitive forces is strongest? Which is weakest? What competitive forces seem to have the greatest effect on industry attractiveness?

2. What strategic approach has Research in Motion chosen to employ in international markets? Would you characterize its strategy as a global strategy or a localized multicountry strategy? How has it utilized location to build competitive advantage?

3. How important is it for Research in Motion to increase the size of its pool of software developers? What are the different options for substantially increasing its R&D staff?

4. Which option for increasing the number of software developers should Research in Motion pursue? Explain how your recommended course of action is consistent with Research in Motion’s resources, organizational capabilities, and management preferences.

APPLE (WEEK 9)

1. What are the chief elements of Apple’s overall competitive strategy? How well do the pieces fi t together?

2. What does a competitive strength assessment reveal about Apple’s computer business, as compared to the leaders in the personal computer industry? Does it appear that the company’s competitive positions in personal media players and smartphones or stronger or weaker than its position in computers?

3. Does it make good strategic sense for Apple to be a competitor in the computer, personal media player, smartphone, and tablet computer industries? Are the value chain activities that Apple performs in computers, personal media players, tablet computers and...
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