Discussion Question

Discussion Question Chapter 7 (3&4), Chapter 8 (1&3), Chapter 9 (1&4), and Chapter 10 (2&4)

1. The chapter discussed the Internet as a disruptive innovation that has facilitated online retailing. It also, however, has presented challenges to brickand-mortar retailers. How might retailers such as Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, or Macy’s need to change their in-store experience in order to continue to attract a flow of customers into their stores to expand sales using direct selling and store displays of the actual merchandise? If the Internet continues to grow and sales of brick-and mortar retailers decline, how might the retailers attract, train, and retain high-quality employees if the industry is perceived as in decline?

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2. Much has been said about competitive advantage gained from innovations such as the Internet, high-technology gadgets, and apps. The chapter points out, however, that low-technology innovations such as the razor–razorblade business model can also create value with incremental innovation. The chapter also noted that Dollar Shave Club (Strategy Highlight 7.1) is merely using a different business model to try to disrupt Gillette. Think of other low-technology innovations that are/were novel, useful, and successfully implemented so that the innovating firm gained a competitive advantage. Find information about the entrepreneurial story behind the innovation.

3. When Walmart decided to incorporate grocery stores into some locations and created “supercenters,” was this a business-level strategy of differentiation or a corporate strategy of diversification? Why? Explain your answer

4. Franchising is widely used in the casual dining and fast food industry, yet Starbucks is quite successful with a large number of company-owned stores. In 2014 Starbucks had over 7,000 company- owned stores in the United States. How do you explain this difference? Is Starbucks bucking the trend of other food-service stores, or is something else going on?

5. The chapter identifies three governing mechanisms for strategic alliances: non-equity, equity, and joint venture. List the benefits and downsides for each of these mechanisms.

6. An alliance’s purpose can affect which governance structure is optimal. Compare a pharmaceutical R&D alliance with a prescription-drug marketing agreement, and recommend a governing mechanism for each. Provide reasons for your selections.

7. Professor Pankaj Ghemawat delivered a TED talk titled “Actually, the World Isn’t Flat.” Do you agree with his assessment that the world is at most semi-globalized, and that we need to be careful not to fall victim to “globalony”? View the talk at: www.ted.com/talks/pankaj_ghemawat_actually_the_world_isn_t_flat?language=en.

8. “Licensing patented technology to a foreign competitor is likely to reduce or eliminate the firm’s competitive advantage.” True or false? Write a paragraph discussing this statement.

Please keep original

All written assignments will use the following format and are to be posted in Blackboard.

Must be a WORD document.

• Always include assignment or project title, name of students, and the date of submission.

• Always use headings and sub-headings when appropriate.

• Always include a title page.

• Always include a table of contents.

• Type your paper on a computer and print it out on standard, white 8.5 x 11-inch paper

and bring to the class session in which the assignment is due.

• Double-space the text of your paper, and use Times New Roman. The font size should be

12 pt.

• Leave two spaces after periods or other punctuation marks.

• Set the margins of your document to 1 inch on all sides.

• Do not indent the first line of paragraphs.

• Create a header that numbers all pages consecutively in the upper right-hand corner, ½-

inch from the top and flush with the right margin.

• Always cite your resources in text and on a reference page at the end of your paper.


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