“However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.” – Winston Churchill
Business Strategy can be defined as the combination of all the decisions taken and actions performed by a business to accomplish business goals and to secure a competitive position in the market. It is the backbone of the business as it is the roadmap which leads to the desired goals (Clegg et al, 2017)
Adam Raman was our guest lecturer for strategy. However outside of our reading preparation and classes on Strategy, we also had to from teams and play the online Business Strategy game, competing with other teams from our class. Once the game was completed we had to give a presentation of our game strategy and the decisions we made.
Adam’s lecture began with a case study of James Dyson and his vacuum business. Although Dyson started with a great strategy that gave him a monopoly of the vacuum cleaner market, his patent will expire in the next few years which has left his business vulnerable to competition and cheap copies once the patent does expire. Adam also taught us about the SWOT analysis which takes strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats into account. This is seen as a traditional strategy process. We also discussed the blue and red ocean strategies as well as the five forces analysis among other strategy theories.
For the Business Strategy Game, I teamed up with Vivien and Jihun. We decided to call our footwear company Cash Cow Industries. The game was very challenging at first. It required our team to learn a lot about the game and the different decisions we needed to take in relation to the business’ operations. Logistics, marketing, corporate citizenship and celebrity endorsements all fell under our watch and required weekly decisions which represented a year in the company’s operations.
Our team started steadily and conservatively while we were getting a feel for the game. However reading the player’s guide as well as the tutorials offered on the game helped us to understand the game better and feel more confident with our decisions as every week passed. Other than one or two weeks where we experienced poor results in the game, we manged to grow our footwear business consistently and ended up winning the game. A large part of this success was due to sticking to our original plans and not changing our operations and pricing too drastically when it came to making decisions. It felt great to win as we had very string competition from two of the three teams we were competing against.
The presentation was great practice for presenting strategy as well as results. Collectively we put together a very slick presentation that was to the point and comfortable to present. Although we ran out of time when we presented, we can be proud of what we achieved in the game as well as the presentation in my opinion.
Of all the different topics we covered in the Managing in the Creative Economy module I think Business Strategy was one of my favourite. I don’t know if this is due to our team’s surprise win or due to my knowledge of Business Strategy being somewhat weak before we started the class. I definitely feel like I gained a lot from this class and preparing for future business ventures when the time is right.
Clegg, S., Schweitzer, J., Whittle, A., & Pitelis, C. (2017) Strategy: Theory and practice (Second ed.). Sage Publications.