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What is Robin Hoods mission statement? 2. Apply SWOT analysis on Robin Hood and the Merrymen? 3. What are some possible strategies for the company to sustain their existence in

 What is Robin Hood’s mission statement? 2. Apply SWOT analysis on Robin Hood and the Merrymen 

3. What are some possible strategies for the company to sustain their existence in the future?  

 Please answer these three questions only.

You need to answer all the questions thoroughly (min. 300 words). You need to draw from theories and concepts rather than using common sense  

Robin Hood & Company

It was in the spring of the second year of his insurrection against the High Sheriff of Nottingham that Robin Hood took a walk in Sherwood Forest. As he walked he pondered the progress of the campaign, the disposition of his forces, the Sheriffs recent moves, and the options that confronted him.

The revolt against the Sheriff had begun as a personal crusade. It erupted out of Robin's conflict with the Sheriff and his administration. However, alone Robin Hood could do little. He therefore sought allies, men with grievances and a deep sense of justice. Later he welcomed all that came, asking few questions and demanding only a willingness to serve. Strength, he believed, lay in numbers.

He spent the first year forging the group into a disciplined band, united in enmity against the Sheriff, and willing to live outside the law. The bank’s organization was simple. Robin ruled supreme, making all-important decisions. He delegated specific tasks to his lieutenants. Will Scarlett was in charge of intelligence and scouting. His main job was to shadow the Sheriff and his men, always alert to their next move. He also collected information on the travel plans of rich merchants and tax collectors. Little John kept discipline among the men and saw to it that their archery was at the high peak that their profession demanded. Scarlock took care of the finances, converting loot to cash, paying shares of the take, and finding suitable hiding places for the surplus. Finally, Much, the Miller's son had the difficult task of provisioning the ever increasing band of Merrymen.

The increasing size of the band was a source of satisfaction for Robin, but also a source of concern. The fame of his Merrymen was spreading, and new recruits poured in from every corner of England. As the band grew larger, their small bivouac became a major encampment. Between raids the men milled about, talking and playing games. Vigilance was in decline, and discipline was becoming harder to enforce. "Why," Robin reflected, "I don't know half the men I run into these days."

The growing band was also beginning to exceed the food capacity of the forest. They were becoming scarce, and supplies had to be obtained from outlying villages. The cost of buying food was beginning to drain the bank’s financial reserves at the very moment when revenues were in decline. Travelers, especially those with the most to lose, were now giving the forest a wide birth. This was costly and inconvenient to them, but it was preferable to having all their goods confiscated.

Robin believed that the time had come for the Merrymen to change their policy of outright confiscation of goods to one of a fixed transit tax. His lieutenants strongly resisted this idea. They were proud of the Merrymen’s famous motto: "Rob the rich to give to the poor." "The farmers and the townspeople," they argued, "are our most important allies." "How can we tax them, and still hope for their help in our fight against the Sheriff?"

Robin wondered how long the Merrymen could keep to the ways and methods of their early days. The Sheriff was growing stronger and becoming better organized. He now had the money and the men and was beginning to harass the band, probing for its weaknesses. The tide of events was beginning to turn against the Merrymen. Robin felt the campaign must be decisively concluded before the Sheriff had a chance to deliver a mortal blow. "But how," he wondered, "could this be done?"

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Robin had often entertained the possibility of killing the Sheriff, but the chances for this seemed increasingly remote. Besides, killing the Sheriff might satisfy his personal thirst for revenge, but it would not improve the situation. Robin had hoped that the perpetual state of unrest, and the Sheriffs failure to collect taxes, would lead to his removal from office. Instead, the Sheriff used his political connections to obtain reinforcement. He had powerful friends at court and was well regarded by the regent, Prince John.

Prince John was vicious and volatile. He was consumed by his unpopularity among the people, who wanted the imprisoned King Richard back. He also lived in constant fear of the barons, who had first given him the regency but were now beginning to dispute his claim to the throne. Several of these barons had set out to collect the ransom that would release King Richard the Lionhearted from his jail in Austria. Robin was invited to join the conspiracy in return for future amnesty. It was a dangerous proposition. Provincial banditry was one thing, court intrigue another. Prince John had spies everywhere, and he was known for his vindictiveness. If the conspirators' plan failed, the pursuit would be relentless and retributions swift.

The sound of the supper horn startled Robin from his thoughts. There was the smell of roasting venison in the air. Nothing was resolved or settled. Robin headed for camp promising himself that he would give these problems his utmost attention after tomorrow's raid.

Question: Suppose you are Robin Hood, how would you address the following concerns?

a. Method for conducting Job analysis b. Forecasting method for replacement of scouts killed in the raid c. Identify how over the period has the recruiting policy changed? d. Identify selection procedure for potential merry men e. Chart an Organogram f. Initiate search for external candidates

Situation 1

HR department of a local FMCG having a workforce of 396 is currently faced with a dilemma. Over the last 2 months, 11 permanent employees (1 Director / 2 Managers / 8 Sales Executives) have resigned all citing better prospects. This alarming situation can get worse as this will create sense of insecurity amongst the remaining employees. The company has fallen short of its set targets.

1. Calculate the turnover rate 2. Which forecasting technique (if any) would you recommend to HR for filling the vacant

positions? 3. Create an ad for the position of Finance Director based on Job Specification. 4. Prepare 3 behavioral interview question based on job description.

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Copyright © 2014 McGraw-Hill Education. All rights reserved. No reproduction or distribution without the prior written consent of McGraw-Hill Education.

Analyzing the External Environment of the Firm: Creating Competitive Advantages

chapter 2

Learning Objectives

2-*

After reading this chapter, you should have a good understanding of:

LO1.1 The importance of developing forecasts of the business environment.

LO1.2 Why environmental scanning, environmental monitoring, and collecting competitive intelligence are critical inputs to forecasting.

LO1.3 Why scenario planning is a useful technique for firms competing in industries characterized by unpredictability and change.

Learning Objectives

After reading this chapter, you should have a good understanding of:

LO1.4 How forces in the competitive environment can affect profitability, and how a firm can improve its competitive position by increasing its power vis-à-vis these forces.

LO1.5 How the Internet and digitally based capabilities are affecting the five competitive forces and industry profitability.

LO1.6 The concept of strategic groups and their strategy and performance implications.

2-*

The Importance of External Environment

Consider…

If a company does not keep pace with changes in the external environment, it becomes difficult to sustain competitive advantages and deliver strong financial results.

2-*

Recall the story of Borders’ demise in Chapter 1.

*

Creating the Environmentally Aware Organization

Exhibit 2.1 Inputs to Forecasting

2-*

So how do managers become environmentally aware? By doing scanning, monitoring, and gathering competitive intelligence, and using these inputs to develop forecasts. Then scenario planning and SWOT analysis can be used to help anticipate major future changes in the external environment, preparing the firm to do more extensive analysis of the forces in the general environment and the industry or competitive environment.

*

Environmental Scanning & Monitoring

Environmental scanning involves surveillance of a firm’s external environment

Predicts environmental changes to come

Detects changes already under way

Allows firm to be proactive

Environmental monitoring tracks evolution of environmental trends

Hard trends – measurable facts/events

Soft trends – estimated, probable events

2-*

Environmental scanning = surveillance of a firm’s external environment to predict environmental changes and detect changes already under way. Is a BIG PICTURE viewpoint of the industry/competition, looking for key indicators of emerging trends – what catches your eye? Alerts the firm to critical trends before changes have developed a discernible pattern and before competitors recognize them. Environmental monitoring = a firm’s analysis of the external environment that tracks the evolution of environmental trends, sequences of events, or streams of activities. Monitor the trends that have the potential to change the competitive landscape – what do you want to track? Firms need to CHOOSE the trends identified via the scanning activity, and regularly monitor or track these specific trends to evaluate the impact of these trends on their strategy process, i.e. Johnson & Johnson tracking % of GDP spent on health care, or # of active hospital beds. Hard trends = a projection based on measurable facts, events, or objects. It is something that WILL happen. Soft trends = something that MIGHT happen; and the probability with which it might happen can be estimated.

*

Competitive Intelligence

Competitive intelligence

Helps firms define & understand their industry

Identify rivals’ strengths & weaknesses

Collect data on competitors

Interpret intelligence data

Helps firms avoid surprises

Anticipate competitors’ moves

Decrease response time

Beware of the potential for unethical behavior while gathering intelligence

2-*

Competitive intelligence = a firm’s activities of collecting and interpreting data on competitors, defining and understanding the industry, and identifying competitors’ strengths and weaknesses. Be careful – aggressive efforts to gather competitive intelligence may lead to unethical or illegal behaviors. Note Strategy Spotlight on Ethical Guidelines on Competitive Intelligence: United Technologies.

*

Example: Using Competitive intelligence

Startups have a disadvantage – it takes a lot of time to be ready for the market – someone else can get there first.

How to find out if your competitor will beat you to launch?

Do competitive intelligence:

Monitor the competitor’s blog posts, e-mail blasts, the CEO's Twitter messages, changes to the LinkedIn profile

Track the dates of each dispatch on a spreadsheet and look for patterns

When the company’s chatter becomes more frequent, broadcasting more and more positive messages about its new product, "It led me to believe they were entering launch mode” so “we put together a limited version of our software and released it to get the Qworky name out first.”

2-*

This story illustrates how a startup company can try to beat the competition with a new product launch. Seattle entrepreneur Mikal Lewis has an M.B.A. from Florida A&M and spent four years at Microsoft working in product planning and strategy. In 2011 he tried launch a company selling software – a Web application designed to improve company meetings. Although he was able to get the name, Qworky, in the press, the company never really got any traction. This demonstrates that competitive intelligence is important, but not sufficient for competitive success. See the story at http://www.inc.com/magazine/20110401/how-to-use-competitive-intelligence-to-gain-an-advantage.html – “How to use competitive intelligence to gain an advantage” by Burt Helm, April 2011, Inc. Magazine.

*

Environmental Forecasting

Environmental forecasting predicts change

Plausible projections about

Direction of environmental change?

Scope of environmental change?

Speed of environmental change?

Intensity of environmental change?

Scenario analysis involves detailed assessments of the ways trends may affect an issue & development of alternative futures based on these assessments

2-*

Environmental forecasting = the development of plausible projections about the direction, scope, speed, and intensity of environmental change. Scenario analysis = an in-depth approach to environmental forecasting that involves experts’ detailed assessments of societal trends, economics, politics. technology, or other dimensions of the external environment. Asks what would happen if the environment should change dramatically? Addresses the need to consider a wider context than the narrow, traditional markets, laying down guidelines for at least 10 years in the future to anticipate rapid change.

*

Question?

A danger of forecasting discussed in the text is that

in most cases, the expense of collecting the necessary data exceeds the benefit.

forecasting’s retrospective nature provides little information about the future.

managers may view uncertainty as “black and white” while ignoring important “gray areas”.

it can create legal problems for the firm if regulators discover the company is making forecasts.

2-*

Answer: C. Some forecasting issues are much more specific to a particular firm and the industry in which it competes. Consider how important it is for Motel 6 to predict future indicators, such as the number of rooms, in the budget segment of the industry. If its predictions are low, it will build too many units, creating a surplus of room capacity that would drive down room rates. A danger of forecasting is that managers may view uncertainty as black and white and ignore important gray areas. The problem is that underestimating uncertainty can lead to strategies that neither defend against threats nor take advantage of opportunities.

*

SWOT Analysis

SWOT analysis is a basic technique for analyzing firm and industry conditions

Firm or internal conditions = Strengths & Weaknesses

Where the firm excels or where it may be lacking

Environmental or external conditions = Opportunities & Threats

Developments that exist in the general environment

Activities among firms competing for the same customers

2-*

Once environmental scanning, monitoring, intelligence gathering, and forecasting have been done, the firm must do a more in-depth analysis to see how all this affects its strategy. SWOT analysis = a framework for analyzing a company’s internal and external environment and that stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The firm’s strengths come from within, and are where your firm excels; while the weaknesses are where your firm is lacking relative to competitors. The opportunities and threats can come from the general environment and/or from the specific industry’s competitive environment.

*

SWOT Analysis

SWOT analysis

Forces managers to consider both internal & external factors simultaneously

Makes firms act proactively

Raises awareness about role of strategy

A firm’s strategy must build on its strengths,

Remedy the weaknesses or work around them,

Take advantage of the opportunities presented by the environment, and

Protect the firm from the threats.

2-*

SWOT’s conceptual simplicity is achieved without sacrificing analytical rigor. (However, see limitations of a SWOT in Chapter 3)

*

Example: SWOT Analysis

Southwest Airlines SWOT

Strengths

Strong culture, employee relationships

Weaknesses

Lack of cultural fit with new AirTran employees

Opportunities

Consolidation in the airline industry means more routes or acquisition targets might be available

Threats

Economic conditions/jet fuel prices might affect profitability in the future

2-*

For more information, see Case 21 on Southwest Airlines.

*

The General Environment

Demographic

Sociocultural

Political/Legal

Technological

Economic

Global

The general environment is composed of factors that are both hard to predict and difficult to control:

2-*

General environment = factors external to an industry, and usually beyond a firm’s control, that affect a firm’s strategy. Although the effects of these factors can vary across industries, EVERY industry has to anticipate the affect of each factor on its firm’s long-term strategies. See Exhibit 2.3 for effects of these various trends on certain industries. In addition, there are many reciprocal relationships among the various elements. For instance, the aging of the U.S. population has important implications for the economic segment.

*

The Demographic Segment

Demographics are easily understandable & quantifiable:

Aging population

Rising affluence

Changes in ethnic composition

Geographic distribution of population

Greater disparities in income levels

2-*

Demographic segment of the general environment = genetic and observable characteristics of a population, including the levels and growth of age, density, sex, race, ethnicity, education, geographic region, and income.

*

The Sociocultural Segment

Sociocultural forces influence the values, beliefs, and lifestyles of a society:

More women in the workforce

Dual-income families

Increase in temporary workers

Greater concern for healthy diets & physical fitness (increasing levels of obesity)

Greater concern for the environment

Postponement of marriage & family formation, having children

2-*

Sociocultural segment of the general environment = the values, beliefs, and lifestyles of a society. These forces might enhance the sales of products and services in many industries but depress sales in others. For instance, increase of women in the workforce enhances the sale of women’s business attire (see Case 9: Ann Taylor) but reduces demand for backing products and cooking staples (see Case 33: Campbell Soup).

*

The Political/Legal Segment

Political/Legal processes & legislation influence environmental regulations with which industries must comply:

Tort reform

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Deregulation of utilities & other industries

Increases in minimum wages

Taxation at local, state, federal levels

Legislation on corporate governance reforms

Affordable Health Care Act

2-*

Political/legal segment of the general environment = how a society creates and exercises power, including rules, laws, and taxation policies. Federal legislation such as Sarbanes-Oxley and Dodd-Frank not only affected how corporations managed their corporate governance processes, but helped create new businesses such as professional accounting services. The Affordable Care Act (Obama-care) will have the same effect on health care delivery mechanisms. Any immigration reform will affect how businesses find and keep needed employees.

*

The Technological Segment

Technological developments lead to new products & services; can create new industries & alter existing ones:

Genetic engineering

Computer-aided design/computer-aided manufacturing systems (CAD/CAM)

Research in synthetic & exotic materials

Pollution/global warming

Wireless communications

Nanotechnology

2-*

Technological segment of the general environment = innovation and state of knowledge in industrial arts, engineering, applied sciences, and pure science; and their interaction with society.

*

The Economic Segment

Economic forces affect all industries:

Interest rates

Unemployment

Consumer Price Index

Trends in GDP & net disposable income

Changes in stock market valuations

2-*

Economic segment of the general environment = characteristics of the economy, including national income and monetary conditions.

*

The Global Segment

Global forces offer both opportunities & risks:

Increasing global trade

Currency exchange rates

Emergence of the Indian & Chinese economies

Trade agreements among regional blocs (NAFTA, EU, ASEAN)

Creation of WTO (leading to decreasing tariffs/free trade in services)

Increased risks associated with terrorism

2-*

Global segment of the general environment = influences from foreign countries, including foreign market opportunities, foreign-based competition, and expanded capital markets. Globalization provides both opportunities to access larger potential markets and a broad base of production factors such as raw materials, labor, skilled managers, and technical professionals. (See Heineken Case 10, or Case 13, eBay’s challenges in China.) However, such endeavors also carry many political, social, and economic risks.

*

The Competitive Environment

The competitive environment consists of factors in the task or industry environment that are particularly relevant to a firm’s strategy:

Competitors (existing or potential)

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