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Harvard University Extension School


Sharon A. Mertz, Ph.D., Instructor Phone: 617-834-7787 E-mail:

Class: Tuesday, 5:30 PM 7:30 PM web conference Office Hours: By appointment

Luis M. Echeverri, Teaching Assistant Phone: 857-488-8478 E-mail: COURSE FORMAT: This section of MGMT E-5000 is a web-based course utilizing the software program Collaborate version 12.5. Prior to the first class session on January 28th, participants must attend an introductory Web Conference On-boarding session to ensure that computer equipment is functioning properly. This session is required for all participants, regardless of your previous experience with web conferencing tools. The sessions will last approximately 30 minutes and will be conducted at the following times please plan to attend one of these (all times U.S. Eastern Standard Time): Wednesday, January 22rd at 5:00 PM Thursday, January 23th at 12:00 PM (noon) Friday, January 24th at 8:00 AM

Set up instructions for the tool are available at the end of the syllabus. Information about accessing the session each week will be provided from the Extension School: please look for this in your e-mail. Links for the weekly live web conference will be posted on the course iSite (

COURSE MATERIAL: Assigned readings and case studies are available online through a course pack. Instructions for accessing the course pack will be provided prior to the start of the term. All assigned readings should be completed prior to class. Please be prepared to discuss the subjects covered in the readings during the web conference.

I will also assign additional readings during the term as appropriate to the topic. These readings will be approximately 5-10 pages in length and will represent current research and viewpoints on the subject. More information on these readings will be made available on the course iSite. COURSE BACKGROUND: This course familiarizes the students with the broad perspectives of general management and strategy. The focus of the course is on the overall organization. It covers roles and responsibilities of general managers and formulation and implementation of strategy, including such concepts as process and content of strategy, interrelations between corporations and their environments, interrelations among different functional areas of management, and role of management systems in implementing strategy. LEARNING OBJECTIVES: This course will include cases on companies in domestic and international markets, employing basic and leading edge technologies, and operating within regulatory and environmental constraints. During the course you will learn how to analyze company strategies; you will also learn via the tools of strategic analysis, how to evaluate strategic options and how to develop an effective strategic plan. The course is structured so that you will need to work continuously throughout the course, reading, analyzing, and preparing your cases. COURSE FORMAT AND EVALUATION: This course will use articles from leading business publications and a number of case analyses. These cases are usually long and complex, and often require financial analysis. Case Write-up: You will prepare two written case analyses in a group (2 students per group). The written paper should be no longer than 5-7 pages (typed and double-spaced). You can add as many exhibits, tables, and figures as necessary in the Appendix. The paper is due in the relevant course drop box before 11:59 PM the Monday before the Tuesday class session when the case will be discussed no exceptions. If you have difficulty uploading your case analysis to the course drop box you may email a copy to the instructor, but the same submission deadline applies. Students will select one case for the written analyses from each of the following groups: Group 1: Cola Wars Continue: Coke and Pepsi in 2010 (Session 3) The Home Depot, Inc. (Session 4) Apple Inc. in 2010 (Session 5)

Group 2: Wal-Mart in the 21st Century: A Global Perspective (Session 7) Hewlett-Packard Compaq: The Merger Decision (Session 9) E-Commerce at Williams Sonoma (Session 10)

Useful frameworks for doing case analyses will be covered within the assigned readings and during class discussions. Also, refer to An Introductory Note on the Case Method (Session 1 reading) to understand the basics of case analysis. In general, there is no single correct answer to a case analysis. The key to a good case analysis is to carefully analyze the situation, apply relevant conceptual materials, and evaluate possible courses of action before selecting your own recommendations. Although each case is unique and may require a different approach and analysis, your case write-up should include the following two elements: 1. An assessment of the current situation of the firm. This includes The environment in which the firm operates - the industry The competitive situation and strategies of the firm, including its financial results, with the objective of identifying the key issues that must be addressed This is not a summary of the case but rather your personal evaluation/critique of the situation using the relevant tools covered in the course. 2. A description of the alternatives to address the issues identified, followed by detailed recommendations. This is a very important and potentially the most difficult part of the case analysis. The search for alternatives must be broad and should consider significant redirection, reorganization or disposition of parts or all the business. Also, changes in business and competitive strategies are expected here. Be specific in your recommended solution. Describe the (new or modified) strategies, the financial objectives and the implementation plan. Presentation: You will do a group presentation (3 students per group) on a strategy topic of your choice. You can pick any topic that is related to strategy. Some examples are balanced scorecard, barriers to entry, board of directors, competitive advantage, core competence, disruptive technology, dynamic capabilities, learning curve, related diversification, strategic group, and value curve. Try to narrow down the topic so that in-depth analysis is possible. You will submit your topic proposal (no more than one page) to me before 11:59 PM, March 3rd. Once approved, you will develop the presentation. You should start with a description of the topic and explain its importance to business and strategy. Next, present the key findings related to the topic that exists in the literature. Then, discuss the challenges and unanswered questions associated with this topic. Finally, offer your recommendations for dealing with the challenges. I expect your presentation to spend more time on the challenges and recommendations sections. You can bring in examples of companies from various industries to present your arguments. Alternately, you may choose one company or companies from a particular industry as an example. Both the generalized approach and the case study approach are fine with me.

You will have 20 minutes to present your project through the web conference. This will be followed by a brief Q&A session. A professional PowerPoint presentation is expected. You need to submit your presentations to the course drop box no later than 11:59 PM on the Monday prior to your scheduled presentation. As with the case analysis submissions, if you experience difficulty uploading your presentation you may send it via email to the instructor adhering to the same deadline. Three sessions (4/22, 4/29 & 5/6) are allocated for the presentations. I will assign the presentation dates for the groups. Team Performance Evaluations: Each student will fill out a performance evaluation on each of his or her team members. Evaluations must be completed and submitted by close of business (5:00 PM, EDT) on Wednesday, May 7. Failure to submit a team performance evaluation for each of your team members will negatively impact your grade. Participation: Attendance will be taken during the semester. Missing more than two classes without good reason will lower your participation grade. You are also expected to be on time for the class. If you cannot attend a lecture, will be late joining the web conference, or need to leave early, please notify the instructor in advance. Participation also means being able to make informed, relevant comments based on your knowledge of the material. Final Case: This is an individual assignment. The case will be given to you approximately one month before the semester ends. It will be a comprehensive case where you will analyze all major aspects of the companys strategy and performance. In the end, you will state your recommendations. This case will be due by 11:59 PM on Monday, May 12. Late cases will not be accepted. I will provide more information as we progress through the semester. GRADING POLICY: Case write-up (2x15%) Presentation Team Evaluations Participation Final Case 30% 20% 5% 20% 25%

ASSIGNMENTS SESSION & DATE Session 1: January 28 TOPIC OF CLASS LECTURE Introduction/Strategic Management

What is Strategy?, Michael Porter, Harvard Business Review, November-December, 1996. What is Strategic Management? Jaren Harris, Ming-Jer Chen, Gregory Fairchild, R. Edward Freeman, S. Venkatraman, and Jenny Mead, Darden note/case. An Introductory Note on the Case Method, John Haywood-Farmer, Richard Ivey School of Business note. Internal Environment

Session 2: February 4

Creating Competitive Advantage, Pankaj Ghemawat and Jan W. Rivkin, HBS background note. The Core Competence of the Corporation, C.K. Pralahad and Gary Hamel, Harvard Business Review, May-June 1990. SWOT Analysis II: Looking Inside for Strengths and Weaknesses, excerpted from Strategy: Create and Implement the Best Strategy for Your Business, Harvard Business School Press, 2006. Case: Global Product Development Strategy at Bosch: Selecting a Development Site for the New Low-Cost ABS Platform, European School of Management and Technology, September, 2012. External Environment

Session 3: February 11

The Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy, Michael Porter, Harvard Business Review, January, 2008. SWOT Analysis I: Looking Outside for Threats and Opportunities Case: Cola Wars Continue: Coke and Pepsi in 2010, David B. Yoffie and Renee Kim, Harvard Business School, 2011. Business Strategy

Session 4: February 18

Types of Strategy: Which Fits Your Business? excerpted from Strategy: Create and Implement the Best Strategy for Your Business, Harvard Business School Press, 2006. Stress-Test Your Strategy: The 7 Questions to Ask, Robert Simons, Harvard Business Review, November 2010. The Perils of Bad Strategy, Richard Rumelt, McKinsey Quarterly, June, 2011. Case: The Home Depot, Inc., Darden Business Publishing, the University of Virginia, 2007.

Session 5: February 25

Business Strategy in Dynamic Environments

*** Course Survey Due before 11:59 PM, February 24 Blue Ocean Strategy, W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne, Harvard Business Review, October, 2004. Innovation in Turbulent Times, Rigby, Gruver, and Allen, Harvard Business Review, June, 2009. Your Strategy Needs a Strategy, Martin Reeves, Claire Love, and Philipp Tillmanns, Harvard Business Review, September, 2012. Case: Apple Inc. in 2010, Harvard Business School, March, 21, 2011. Corporate Strategy

Session 6: March 4

Strategies of Unrelated Diversification, by Samhita Jayanti and Bharat N. Anand, HBS note Creating Corporate Advantage, by David Collis and Cynthia A Montgomery, Harvard Business Review, May-June 1998 Choosing Corporate and Global Scope, by Mikolaj Jan Piskorski, HBS note Case: House of Tata, 1995: The Next Generation (A), Harvard Business School, August 30, 2006.

Presentation Proposal Due Session 7: March 11 International Strategy

Introduction to International Strategy, David Collins and Jordan Siegel, HBS Module Note, December, 2006. Distance Still Matters: The Hard Reality of Global Expansion, Pankaj Ghemawat, Harvard Business Review, September, 2001. Should You Have a Global Strategy? Chris Carr and David Collins, MIT Sloan Management Review, Fall 2011, Vol. 53 No. 1. The CEO of Heinz on Powering Growth in Emerging Markets, Bill Johnson, Harvard Business Review, October, 2011. Case: Wal-Mart in the 21st Century: A Global Perspective, Darden School of Business, University of Virginia, 2003.

March 18 Spring Break no class Session 8: March 25 Alliances

Simple Rules for Making Alliances Work, Jonathan Hughes and Jeff Weiss, Harvard Business Review, 2007. How to Manage Alliances Better Than One at a Time, Ulrich Wassmer, Pierre Dussauge and Marcel Planellas. Sloan Management Review, Spring, 2010.

When to Ally and When to Acquire, Jeffrey H. Dyer, Prashant Kale, and Harbir Singh, Harvard Business Review, 2007. Case: The KLM Approach to Alliances, IESE Business School, 2008. Mergers and Acquisitions

Session 9: April 1

Bet-the-Company Deals: Mergers, Alliances, and Outsourcing, Danny Ertel and Mark Gordon (From The Point of the Deal: How to Negotiate When Yes is Not Enough, Harvard Business School Press, 2007). The New M&A Playbook, Clayton M. Christensen, Richard Alton, Curtis Rising, and Andrew Waldeck, Harvard Business Review, March, 2011. Case: Hewlett-Packard Compaq: The Merger Decision, Harvard Business School, 2004. Implementation

Session 10: April 8

Using the Balanced Scorecard as a Strategic Management System, Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton, Harvard Business Review, July-August 2007. Never Underestimate the Importance of Soft Skills in Executing Strategy, Balanced Scorecard Report, Harvard Business Publishing, September-October 2011. How Innovative is Your Companys Culture? Jay Rao and Joseph Weintraub, Sloan Management Review, Spring, 2013. Case: E-Commerce at Williams Sonoma, Harvard Business School, October 25, 2000. Corporate Governance

Session 11: April 15

What Makes Great Boards Great, Jeffrey A. Sonnenfeld, Harvard Business Review, September, 2002. Corporate governance in emerging economies: Understanding the game, Victoria L. Crittenden and William F. Crittenden, Business Horizons (2012), 567-574. Seven Myths of Corporate Governance, Stanford Graduate School of Business, CGRP16, 06/01/11 Case: Lehman Brothers: Crisis in Corporate Governance, Case Research Journal, 2012. Group Presentations Group Presentations Group Presentations Final Case Due by 11:59 PM, May 12

Session 12: April 22 Session 13: April 29 Session 14: May 6 Session 15: (no regular class)

Blackboard Collaborate Version 12.5 Instructions How to Get Ready and Enter a Session

Preparing to Use Collaborate 1. We recommend that everyone use an echo-canceling headset when in a web conference. You can buy them at an office supply store or online for about $30-$50. We suggest using a wired rather than wireless headset. If you dont already have a headset, you could buy something similar to these:
You can get something similar to one of these: Connects to computer via USB connection

Connects to computer via jack

Note: Please do the following steps using the same computer you will use for your class and be in the same place where you will be during your class to make sure your computer is set up correctly and that there aren't any firewalls that would prevent you from using Collaborate.


Go to the Blackboard Collaborate First Time Users Page. (Also complete these steps if you change computers after the course starts.) Step 1: Checking System Requirements. When you land on this page your computer will automatically be checked to see if your operating system is compatible with Collaborate and if you have the correct version of Java to run the software. Most people sail through this step easily, but some have to prepare their computers. If you need to download a newer version of Java, you will be walked through the steps for doing this. If you have a modern computer with a fast internet connection, this can take just 5 minutes, but if you have an old computer and/or slow internet connection, it can take about 30-40 minutes. Occasionally users have difficulty connecting to Collaborate and it may take some time and effort to troubleshoot the problem. If you run into trouble, contact Collaborate support. Note about Java and Macs
Java software is needed to use Blackboard Collaborate. Recently there have been several updates to Java that have affected Mac users and how they access Collaborate sessions. Blackboard Collaborate is advising Mac users with OS version 10.6 to update to Mac

10.7 or 10.8., then install Java 7. Java can be downloaded from the following website:

Step 2: Configuring your system. Click on the v12.5 Configuration Room. You can test your connection, settings, and configure your audio. Step 3: Training and Resources. Watch the Online Orientation to get an overview.

Entering Your Collaborate Session

What you see when you are getting into your Collaborate session will depend on the type of computer you have and the browser you are using. Below are screen shots of what you may see and instructions about how to get into your session.

If you are using Mac OS X 10.8.4 or later, first follow the instructions for downloading the Blackboard Collaborate Launcher you will see on your screen after you click on the link for your session. Then follow the instructions below. For more information see Blackboards Help: Joining web conferencing sessions using the Blackboard Collaborate Launcher.

If you are using Windows Explorer as your web browser, you may see this after you click on the link to your session. Instructions: Scroll down the page until you see Step 2 and click the Start Session button.

Session Log In. Instructions: Type your name. Click Log In.

Opening meeting. Instructions: Choose Open with Java (TM) Web Start Launcher (default) and Click OK.

Java will load.

Collaborate will start loading

Security Warning. Instructions: Click Dont Block.


Security Warning. Instructions: Click Run.

Loading Blackboard Collaborate. This may take some time.

Choose your connection Speed. We suggest you use a wired connection. Most homes and many office speeds are Cable/DSL.


Collaborate is running. If youre waiting for Collaborate to open and you notice the icon below in your task bar or dock, click on it to maximize the Collaborate screen. If youre on a Mac, the Collaborate window may be behind another open window on your screen. If you see more than one of these icons, you have opened Collaborate more than once. The one farthest to the left is the first one that was opened first. Close the others by clicking on them and exiting out of the session. Be sure you remain in one session!

PC ONLY Meeting Download. If youre on a PC you may see this. If it seems like Collaborate has finished loading but you dont see the purple and white arrow icon above, you may need to click this. If there are numbers after meeting.jnlp, it means your computer has downloaded the session several times. Just choose one download to open.

Help Blackboard Collaborate Support Available 24 Hours / Day - 7 Days / Week: