What is a Case Study?
A instance survey is a description of an existent administrative state of affairs affecting a determination to be made or a job to be solved. It can be a existent state of affairs that really happened merely as described. or may included parts that have been disguised for grounds of privateness. Most instance surveies are written in such a manner that the reader takes the topographic point of the director whose duty is to do determinations to assist work out the job. In about all instance surveies. a determination must be made. although that determination might merely be to go forth the state of affairs as it is and make nil.
The Case Method as a Learning Tool
The instance method of analysis is a larning tool in which pupils and teachers participate in direct treatment of instance surveies. as opposed to the talk method. where the teacher speaks and pupils listen and take notes. In the instance method. pupils teach themselves. with the teacher being an active usher. instead than merely a speaking caput presenting content. The focal point is on pupils larning through their joint. co-operative attempt. Assigned instances are foremost prepared by pupils. and this readying forms the footing for category treatment under the way of the teacher. Students learn. frequently unconsciously. how to measure a job. how to do determinations. and how to orally reason a point of position. Using this method. they besides learn how to believe in footings of the jobs faced by an decision maker. In classs that use the instance method extensively. a important portion of the student’s rating may rest with schoolroom engagement in instance treatments. with another significant part resting on written instance analyses. For these grounds. utilizing the instance method tends to be really intensive for both pupils and teacher.
How to make a Case Study
While there is no 1 unequivocal “Case Method” or attack. there are common stairss that most attacks recommend be followed in undertaking a instance survey. It is inevitable that different teachers will state you to make things otherwise. this is portion of life and will besides be portion of working for others. This assortment is good since it will demo you different ways of nearing determination devising. What follows is intended to be a instead general attack. parts of which have been taken from an first-class book entitled. Learning with Cases. by Erskine. Leenders. & A ; Mauffette-Leenders. published by the Richard Ivey School of Business. The University of Western Ontario. 1997.
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The Case Method 2 An Approach to Case Analysis
Beforehand ( normally a hebdomad before ) . you will acquire: 1. the instance survey. 2. ( frequently ) some steering inquiries that will necessitate to be answered. and 3. ( sometimes ) some reading assignments that have some relevancy to the instance capable. Your work in finishing the instance can be divided up into three constituents: 1. what you do to fix before the category treatment. 2. what takes topographic point in the category treatment of the instance. and 3. anything required after the category treatment has taken topographic point. For maximal effectivity. it is indispensable that you do all three constituents. Here are the subcomponents. in order. We will discourse them in more item shortly. 1. Before the category treatment: 1. Read the reading assignments ( if any ) 2. Use the Short Cycle Process to familiarise yourself with the instance. 3. Use the Long Cycle Process to analyse the instance 4. Normally there will be group meetings to discourse your thoughts. 5. Write up the instance ( if required ) 2. In the category treatment: 1. Person will get down the treatment. normally at the suggestion of the teacher. 2. Listen carefully and take notes. Pay close attending to premises. Insist that they are clearly stated. 3. Take portion in the treatment. Your part is of import. and is likely a portion of your rating for the class. 3. After the category treatment: 1. Review ASAP after the category. Note what the cardinal construct was and how the instance fits into the class.
Fixing A Case Study: A Two Measure Procedure
It helps to hold a system when sitting down to fix a instance survey as the sum of information and issues to be resolved can ab initio look rather overpowering. The followers is a good manner to get down.
Measure 1: The Short Cycle Process
1. Quickly read the instance. If it is a long instance. at this phase you may desire to read merely the first few and last paragraphs. You should so be able to | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 3 An Approach to Case Analysis
2. Answer the undermentioned inquiries: 1. Who is the determination shaper in this instance. and what is their place and duties? 2. What appears to be the issue ( of concern. job. challenge. or chance ) and its significance for the organisation? 3. Why has the issue arisen and why is the determination shaper involved now? 4. When does the determination shaper have to make up one’s mind. decide. act or dispose of the issue? What is the urgency to the state of affairs? 3. Take a expression at the Exhibits to see what Numberss have been provided. 4. Review the instance subtitles to see what countries are covered in more deepness. 5. Review the instance inquiries if they have been provided.
This may give you some hints are what the chief issues are to be resolved. You should now be familiar with what the instance survey is about. and are ready to get down the procedure of analysing it. You are non done yet! Many pupils erroneously believe that this is all the readying needed for a category treatment of a instance survey. If this was the extent of your readying. your ability to lend to the treatment would probably be limited to the first one one-fourth of the category clip allotted. You need to travel farther to fix the instance. utilizing the following measure. One of the primary grounds for making the short rhythm procedure is to give you an indicant of how much work will necessitate to be done to fix the instance study decently.
Measure 2: The Long Cycle Process
At this point. the undertaking consists of two parts: 1. A elaborate reading of the instance. and so 2. Analyzing the instance. When you are making the elaborate reading of the instance survey. expression for the undermentioned subdivisions: 1. Opening paragraph: introduces the state of affairs. 2. Background information: industry. organisation. merchandises. history. competition. fiscal information. and anything else of significance. 3. Specific ( functional ) country of involvement: selling. finance. operations. human resources. or integrated. 4. The specific job or determination ( s ) to be made. 5. Options unfastened to the determination shaper. which may or may non be stated in the instance. 6. Decision: sets up the undertaking. any restraints or restrictions. and the urgency of the state of affairs. Most. but non all instance surveies will follow this format. The intent here is to exhaustively understand the state of affairs and the determinations that will necessitate to be made. Take your clip. do notes. and maintain focused on your aims.
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The Case Method 4 An Approach to Case Analysis
Analyzing the instance should take the undermentioned stairss: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Specifying the issue ( s ) Analyzing the instance informations Generating options Choosing determination standards Analyzing and measuring options Choosing the preferable alternate Developing an action/implementation program
Specifying the issue ( s ) /Problem Statement The job statement should be a clear. concise statement of precisely what needs to be addressed. This is non easy to compose! The work that you did in the short rhythm procedure answered the basic inquiries. Now it is clip to make up one’s mind what the chief issues to be addressed are traveling to be in much more item. Asking yourself the undermentioned inquiries may assist: 1. What appears to be the job ( s ) here? 2. How do I know that this is a job? Note that by inquiring this inquiry. you will be assisting to distinguish the symptoms of the job from the job itself. Examples: while worsening gross revenues or unhappy employees are a job to most companies. they are in fact. symptoms of underlying jobs which need to turn to. 3. What are the immediate issues that need to be addressed? This helps to distinguish between issues that can be resolved within the context of the instance. and those that are bigger issues that needed to addressed at a another clip ( sooner by person else! ) .
4. Differentiate between importance and urgency for the issues identified. Some issues may look to be pressing. but upon closer scrutiny are comparatively unimportant. while others may be far more of import ( comparative to work outing our job ) than urgent. You want to cover with of import issues in order of urgency to maintain focused on your aim. Important issues are those that have a important consequence on: 1. profitableness. 2. strategic way of the company. 3. beginning of competitory advantage. 4. morale of the company’s employees. and/or 5. client satisfaction. The job statement may be framed as a inquiry. e. g. : What should Joe make? Or How can Mr. Smith better market portion? Normally the job statement has to be re-written several times during the analysis of a instance. as you peel back the beds of symptoms or causing. | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 5 An Approach to Case Analysis
Analyzing Case Data In analysing the instance informations. you are seeking to reply the followers: 1. Why or how did these issues originate? You are seeking to find cause and consequence for the jobs identified. You can non work out a job that you can non find the cause of! It may be helpful to believe of the organisation in inquiry as consisting of the undermentioned constituents: 1. Resources such as stuffs. equipment. or supplies. and 2. Peoples who transform these resources utilizing 3. Procedures which create something of greater value. Now. where are the jobs being caused within this model. and why? 2. Who is affected most by this issues? You are seeking to place who are the relevant stakeholders to the state of affairs. and who will be affected by the determinations to be made.
3. What are the restraints and chances implicit to this state of affairs? It is really rare that resources are non a restraint. and allotments must be made on the premise that non plenty will be available to delight everyone. 4. What do the Numberss tell you? You need to take a expression at the Numberss given in the instance survey and do a judgement as to their relevancy to the job identified. Not all Numberss will be instantly utile or relevant. but you need to be careful non to overlook anything. When make up one’s minding to analyse Numberss. maintain in head why you are making it. and what you intend to make with the consequence. Use common sense and comparings to industry criterions when doing judgements as to the significance of your replies to avoid leaping to decisions.
Generating Options This subdivision deals with different ways in which the job can be resolved. Typically. there are many ( the gag is at least three ) . and being originative at this phase helps. Thingss to retrieve at this phase are: 1. Be realistic! While you might be able to happen a twelve options. maintain in head that they should be realistic and fit within the restraints of the state of affairs. 2. The options should be reciprocally sole. that is. they can non go on at the same clip. 3. Not doing a determination pending farther probe is non an acceptable determination for any instance survey that you will analyse. A director can ever detain doing a determination to garner more information. which is non pull offing at all! The whole point to this exercising is to larn how to do good determinations. and holding imperfect information is normal for most concern determinations. non the exclusion.
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The Case Method 6 An Approach to Case Analysis
4. Making nil as in non altering your scheme can be a feasible option ; provided it is being recommended for the right grounds. as will be discussed below. 5. Avoid the meat sandwich method of supplying merely two other clearly unwanted options to do one sensible alternate expression better by comparing. This will be distressingly obvious to the reader. and merely shows laziness on your portion in non being able to come up with more than one nice option. 6. Keep in head that any alternate chosen will necessitate to be implemented at some point. and if serious obstructions exist to successfully making this. so you are the 1 who will look bad for proposing it. Once the options have been identified. a method of measuring them and choosing the most appropriate one needs to be used to get at a determination. Key Decision Criteria ( KDC ) A really of import construct to understand. they answer the inquiry of how you are traveling to make up one’s mind which option is the best one to take. Other than taking indiscriminately. we will ever use some standards in doing any determination. Think about the last clip that you make a purchase determination for an article of vesture. Why did you take the article that you did? The standards that you may hold used could hold been: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. fit monetary value manner colour blessing of friend/family handiness
Note that any one of these standards could suitably complete the sentence: the brand/style that I choose to buy must… . These standards are besides how you will specify or find that a successful purchase determination has been made. For a concern state of affairs. the cardinal determination standards are those things that are of import to the organisation doing the determination. and they will be used to measure the suitableness of each option recommended. Key determination standards should be: 1. Brief. sooner in point signifier. such as 1. improve ( or at least maintain ) profitableness. 2. addition gross revenues. market portion. or return on investing. 3. maintain client satisfaction. corporate image. 4. be consistent with the corporate mission or scheme. 5. within our present ( or hereafter ) resources and capablenesss. 6. within acceptable hazard parametric quantities. 7. easiness or velocity of execution. | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 7 An Approach to Case Analysis
8. employee morale. safety. or turnover. 9. retain flexibleness. and/or. 10. minimize environmental impact.
2. Measurable. at least to the point of comparing. such as option A will better profitableness more that alternate B. 3. Be related to your job statement. and options. If you find that you are speaking about something else. that is a mark of a missing option or cardinal determination standards. or a ill formed job statement. Students tend to happen the construct of cardinal determination standards really confounding. so you will likely happen that you re-write them several times as you analyze the instance. They are similar to restraints or restrictions. but are used to measure options. Evaluation of Options If you have done the above decently. this should be straightforward. You measure the options against each cardinal determination standards. Often you can put up a simple tabular array with cardinal determination standards as columns and options as rows. and compose this subdivision based on the tabular array. Each option must be compared to each standards and its suitableness ranked in some manner. such as met/not met. or in relation to the other options. such as better than. or highest.
This will be of import to choosing an option. Another method that can be used is to name the advantages and disadvantages ( pros/cons ) of each option. and so discoursing the short and long term deductions of taking each. Note that this implies that you have already predicted the most likely result of each of the options. Some pupils find it helpful to see three different degrees of result. such as best. worst. and most likely. as another manner of measuring options. Recommendation You must hold one! Business people are decision-makers ; this is your chance to pattern devising determinations. Give a justification for your determination ( use the KDC’s ) . Check to do certain that it is one ( and merely one ) of your Options and that it does decide what you defined as the Problem.
Structure of the Written Report
Different teachers will necessitate different formats for instance studies. but they should all hold approximately the same general content. For this class. the study should hold the undermentioned subdivisions in this order: 1. Title page 2. Table of contents | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 8 An Approach to Case Analysis
3. Executive drumhead 4. Problem ( Issue ) statement 5. Data analysis 6. Key Decision Criteria 7. Options analysis 8. Recommendations 9. Action and Implementation Plan 10. Exhibits
Notes on Written Reports:
Always remember that you will be judged by the quality of your work. which includes your written work such as instance survey studies. Sloppy. dis-organized. hapless quality work will state more about you than you likely want said! To guarantee the quality of your written work. maintain the followers in head when composing your study: 1. Proof-read your work! Not merely on the screen while you write it. but the difficult transcript after it is printed. Fix the mistakes before subjecting. 2. Use enchantment checker to extinguish spelling mistakes 3. Use grammar look intoing to avoid common grammatical mistakes such as tally on sentences. 4. Note that repeating of instance facts is non included in the format of the instance study. nor is it considered portion of analysis. Anyone reading your study will be familiar with the instance. and you need merely to advert facts that are relevant to ( and support ) your analysis or recommendation as you need them. 5. If you are traveling to include exhibits ( peculiarly Numberss ) in your study. you will necessitate to mention to them within the organic structure of your study. non merely tack them on at the terminal!
This mention should be in the signifier of back uping decisions that you are doing in your analysis. The reader should non hold to think why peculiar exhibits have been included. nor what they mean. If you do non be after to mention to them. so go forth them out. 6. Write in a formal mode suited for scholarly work. instead than a missive to a friend. 7. Common sense and logical thought can make admirations for your rating! 8. Proof-read your work! Have person else read it excessively! ( peculiarly if English is non your first linguistic communication ) This 2nd brace of eyes will give you an nonsubjective sentiment of how good your study holds together. Beginning: FC Manning School of Business. Nova Scotia. Canada ( Adapted and edited for usage by Steve Varela )
OPTION II: A Strategy Orientation
Houghton Mifflin Publishers ( General Business Analysis )
ANALYZING A CASE STUDY As merely mentioned. the intent of the instance survey is to allow you use the constructs you’ve learned when you analyze the issues confronting a specific company. To analyse a instance survey. hence. you must analyze closely the issues with which the company is confronted. Most frequently you will necessitate to read the instance several times – one time to hold on the overall image of what is go oning to the company and so several times more to detect and hold on the specific jobs. By and large. elaborate analysis of a instance survey should include eight countries: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. The history. development. and growing of the company over clip The designation of the company’s internal strengths and weaknesses The nature of the external environment environing the company A SWOT analysis The sort of corporate-level scheme pursued by the company The nature of the company’s business-level scheme The company’s construction and control systems and how they match its scheme Recommendations
To analyse a instance. you need to use what you’ve learned to each of these countries. We offer a sum-up of the stairss you can take to analyse the instance stuff for each of the eight points we merely noted. 1. Analyze the company’s history. development. and growing. A convenient manner to look into how a company’s yesteryear scheme and construction affect it in the present is to chart the critical incidents in its history – that is. the events that were the most unusual or the most indispensable for its development into the company it is today. Some of the events have to make with its initiation. its initial merchandises. how it makes new-product market determinations. and how it developed and chose functional competences to prosecute. Its entry into new concerns and displacements in its chief lines of concern are besides of import mileposts to see.
2. Identify the company’s internal strengths and failings. Once the historical profile is completed. you can get down the SWOT analysis. Use all the incidents you have charted to develop an history of the company’s strengths and failings as they have emerged historically. Examine each of the value creative activity maps of the company. and place the maps in which the company is presently strong and presently weak. Some companies might be weak in selling ; some might be strong in research and development. Make lists of these strengths and failings. The SWOT checklist gives illustrations of what might travel in these lists. | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 10 An Approach to Case Analysis
3. Analyze the external environment. The following measure is to place environmental chances and menaces. Here you should use all information you have learned on industry and macroenvironments. to analyse the environment the company is facing. Of peculiar importance at the industry degree is Porter’s five forces theoretical account and the phase of the life rhythm theoretical account. Which factors in the macro environment will look outstanding depends on the specific company being analyzed. However. utilize each factor in bend ( for case. demographic factors ) to see whether it is relevant for the company in inquiry. Having done this analysis. you will hold generated both an analysis of the company’s environment and a list of chances and menaces. The SWOT checklist lists some common environmental chances and menaces that you may look for. but the list you generate will be specific to your company. 4. Measure the SWOT analysis. Having identified the company’s external chances and menaces every bit good as its internal strengths and failings. you need to see what your findings mean. That is. you need to equilibrate strengths and failings against chances and menaces.
Is the company in an overall strong competitory place? Can it go on to prosecute its current business- or corporate-level scheme productively? What can the company do to turn failings into strengths and menaces into chances? Can it develop new functional. concern. or corporate schemes to carry through this alteration? Never simply generate the SWOT analysis and so put it aside. Because it provides a compendious sum-up of the company’s status. a good SWOT analysis is the key to all the analyses that follow. 5. Analyze corporate-level scheme. To analyse a company’s corporate-level scheme. you foremost necessitate to specify the company’s mission and ends. Sometimes the mission and ends are stated explicitly in the instance ; at other times you will hold to deduce them from available information. The information you need to roll up to happen out the company’s corporate scheme includes such factors as its line ( s ) of concern and the nature of its subordinates and acquisitions. It is of import to analyse the relationship among the company’s concerns. Do they merchandise or interchange resources? Are at that place additions to be achieved from synergism?
Alternatively. is the company merely running a portfolio of investings? This analysis should enable you to specify the corporate scheme that the company is prosecuting ( for illustration. related or unrelated variegation or a combination of both ) and to reason whether the company operates in merely one nucleus concern. Then. utilizing your SWOT analysis. debate the virtues of this scheme. Is it appropriate. given the environment the company is in? Could a alteration in corporate scheme provide the company with new chances or transform a failing into a strength? For illustration. should the company diversify from its nucleus concern into new concerns? Other issues should be considered every bit good. How and why has the company’s scheme changed over clip? What is the claimed principle for any alterations? Often it is a good thought to analyse the company’s concerns or merchandises to measure its | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 11 An Approach to Case Analysis
state of affairs and place which divisions contribute the most to or take away from its competitory advantage. It is besides utile to research how the company has built its portfolio over clip. Make it get new concerns. or did it internally venture its ain? All these factors provide hints about the company and indicate ways of bettering its hereafter public presentation. 6. Analyze business-level scheme. Once you know the company’s corporate-level scheme and have done the SWOT analysis. the following measure is to place the company’s business-level scheme. If the company is a single-business company. its business-level scheme is indistinguishable to its corporate-level scheme. If the company is in many concerns. each concern will hold its ain business-level scheme. You will necessitate to place the company’s generic competitory scheme distinction. low cost. or concentrate – and its investing scheme. given the company’s comparative competitory place and the phase of the life rhythm.
The company besides may market different merchandises utilizing different business-level schemes. For illustration. it may offer a low-priced merchandise scope and a line of differentiated merchandises. Be certain to give a full history of a company’s businesslevel scheme to demo how it competes. Identifying the functional schemes that a company pursues to construct competitory advantage through superior efficiency. quality. invention. and client reactivity and to accomplish its business-level scheme is really of import. The SWOT analysis will hold provided you with information on the company’s functional competences. You should farther look into its production. selling. or research and development scheme to derive a image of where the company is traveling. For illustration. prosecuting a low-cost or a distinction scheme successfully requires a really different set of competences. Has the company developed the right 1s? If it has. how can it work them farther? Can it prosecute both a lowcost and a distinction scheme at the same time?
The SWOT analysis is particularly of import at this point if the industry analysis. peculiarly Porter’s theoretical account. has revealed the menaces to the company from the environment. Can the company trade with these menaces? How should it alter its business-level scheme to counter them? To measure the potency of a company’s business-level scheme. you must first execute a thorough SWOT analysis that captures the kernel of its jobs. Once you complete this analysis. you will hold a full image of the manner the company is runing and be in a place to measure the potency of its scheme. Therefore. you will be able to do recommendations refering the form of its future actions. However. foremost you need to see scheme execution. or the manner the company tries to accomplish its scheme. 7. Analyze construction and control systems. The purpose of this analysis is to place what construction and control systems the company is utilizing to implement its scheme and to measure whether that construction is the appropriate 1 for the company. | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 12 An Approach to Case Analysis
Different corporate and concern schemes require different constructions. For illustration. does the company have the right degree of perpendicular distinction ( for case. does it hold the appropriate figure of degrees in the hierarchy or decentralized control? ) or horizontal distinction ( does it utilize a functional construction when it should be utilizing a merchandise construction? ) ? Similarly. is the company utilizing the right integrating or control systems to pull off its operations? Are directors being suitably rewarded? Are the right wagess in topographic point for encouraging cooperation among divisions? These are all issues that should be considered. In some instances there will be small information on these issues. whereas in others there will be a batch.
Obviously. in analysing each instance you should pitch the analysis toward its most outstanding issues. For illustration. organisational struggle. power. and political relations will be of import issues for some companies. Try to analyse why jobs in these countries are happening. Do they happen because of bad scheme preparation or because of bad scheme execution? Organizational alteration is an issue in many instances because the companies are trying to change their schemes or constructions to work out strategic jobs. Therefore. as a portion of the analysis. you might propose an action program that the company in inquiry could utilize to accomplish its ends. For illustration. you might name in a logical sequence the stairss the company would necessitate to follow to change its business-level scheme from distinction to concentrate. 8. Make recommendations. The last portion of the instance analysis procedure involves doing recommendations based on your analysis. Obviously. the quality of your recommendations is a direct consequence of the thoroughness with which you prepared the instance analysis. The work you put into the instance analysis will be obvious to the professor from the nature of your recommendations.
Recommendations are directed at work outing whatever strategic job the company is confronting and at increasing its hereafter profitableness. Your recommendations should be in line with your analysis ; that is. they should follow logically from the old treatment. For illustration. your recommendation by and large will focus on on the specific ways of altering functional. concern. and corporate scheme and organisational construction and control to better concern public presentation. The set of recommendations will be specific to each instance. and so it is hard to discourse these recommendations here. Such recommendations might include an addition in disbursement on specific research and development undertakings. the divesting of certain concerns. a alteration from a scheme of unrelated to related variegation. an addition in the degree of integrating among divisions by utilizing undertaking forces and squads. or a move to a different sort of construction to implement a new business-level scheme. Again. do certain your recommendations are reciprocally consistent and are written in the signifier of an action program. The program might incorporate a timetable that sequences the actions for altering the company’s scheme and a description of how alterations at the corporate degree will ask alterations at the concern degree and later at the functional degree. | Tunghai University – College of Management
The Case Method 13 An Approach to Case Analysis
After following all these phases. you will hold performed a thorough analysis of the instance and will be in a place to fall in in category treatment or show your thoughts to the category. depending on the format used by your professor. Remember that you must orient your analysis to accommodate the specific issue discussed in your instance. In some instances. you might wholly exclude one of the stairss in the analysis because it is non relevant to the state of affairs you are sing. You must be sensitive to the demands of the instance and non use the model we have discussed in this subdivision blindly. The model is meant merely as a usher and non as an lineation that you must utilize to make a successful analysis.