Critically evaluate the extent to which rational strategic planning offers a “one best way” to form strategy. Your answer should draw on relevant organisational examples to illustrate your answer.
On completion of this module students will be able to:
-Critically evaluate business practice within theoretical frameworks
-Apply strategic decision making in a variety of organizational contexts
-Analysis of organizational and cultural structures
-Evaluate strategic theory / models
Lecture notes will be posted on Blackboard along with any administrative notices.? Essay Plan – One side on A4Critically evaluate the extent to which rational strategic planning offers a “one best way” to form strategy. Your answer should draw on relevant organisational examples to illustrate your answer.
With reference to academic literature on the development of the field of strategy, illustrated with brief organisational examples, critically evaluate the extent to which this strategic management approach is appropriate to contemporary business. Your review should include other forms of strategy making.Requirements
Your work should be based on a wide range of reading. This reading will come from academic journals and textbooks. The module team will be providing a range of suitable readings that will act as a starting point for you. However, significant credit will be given for evidence of more reading in addition to those papers you are directed towards. You will be expected to use a range of seminal and contemporary sources.
The ability to review and critically evaluate academic sources is a key skill. This means that you familiarise yourself with an overall body of knowledge and then analyse it. In this case you need to be familiar with the development of the strategy field in the management literature. You should compare and contrast different approaches to strategy rather than simply describing ‘who said what’.
To illustrate the variety of approaches you should also use brief organisational examples. These can be sourced from examples found in journal papers, from company websites and from reputable news sources such as major newspapers and media outlets such as the BBC business news website. Examples must be very concise. Please do not set out entire case studies of organisations – this will use too many words.
Students should avoid web-based sources such as Wikipedia, online dictionaries and ‘quick MBA’ for example. By all means use Google Scholar in addition to our own library based systems here, to find your way to quality journal articles and books. However, using unaccredited and non-peer reviewed internet sources is to be avoided. We recommend using search facilities like ‘ProQuest Business Collection” through the ‘iFind’ portal.Structure and style
The length limit for the assignment plan is one side of A4 paper with not smaller than 12-point font. Section headings and bullet points are acceptable – the plan does not have to be in prose. References should be inserted as footnotes.
Structuring your essay is important. You should have a clear introduction setting out what the essay will cover both in terms of content and the way the rest of the essay will be approached.
Limited sub-headings are fine, although you must avoid lots of headings and bullet points and so on. This is designed to be an essay and should flow, so you need to find a way of writing that signposts clearly where the work is going, as well as setting out your content in sufficient detail.
This is a literature review so you will need to consider how best to structure your main part of the paper. It is common for literature reviews to take a broadly chronological approach, in other words starting with the inception of a particular idea or concept (like strategy) and tracing its development forward over time.
The review then typically finishes with a discussion of where the field is today; what are the ongoing debates and questions still being discussed. Another approach is to divide your review into themes, depending on the topic being studied, but it should still conclude by giving the reader a sense of the current debates. It is a matter for your judgement whether this topic is best addressed thematically or chronologically.
Finally, it is important that your essay has a conclusion. This should directly address the question, drawing on the evidence you have analysed in the preceding review.
Please see the section on referencing below. It is very important that you reference using the APA 6th Style of referencing. See over leaf for links on this.Key Marking Criteria : Please see the matrix in Appendix 1
Quality of writing
Quality of critical evaluation
Structure / presentation
Referencing / reading
Use of organisational examples
Quality of conclusionsReferencing
Full academic referencing using the APA (6th Edition) referencing style should be used throughout the assignment. Guideline on how to reference using the APA style can be found at:
APA Referencing Short guide: http://tinyurl.com/pn9oaxt
APA Referencing Long Guide: http://tinyurl.com/bwdj2mk
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