Assignment 2: LASA 1 Assignment—The Leader as a Strategist Report

 
Assignment 2: LASA 1 Assignment—The Leader as a Strategist Report
For this assignment, you will choose an organization to analyze. This  organization can be one you are personally familiar with, or one you  have observed to be an effective organization, You now become a newly  appointed senior leader in that organization.
As a new leader, you must prepare a report for the CEO that assesses  the organization’s overall alignment between its vision, mission,  values, and strategy. This report should consist of the following  sections:

An analysis of the strategic cascade of the organization
This  includes assessing the organization’s strategy and market position. Use  the framework implied in Michael Porter’s (1997) article “What is  Strategy.” When describing the business strategy of your organization,  consider the following questions: 

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What is the target market (target customer)?
What is your organization’s value proposition (How does it deliver value that satisfies the target’s wants and needs?)?
How is your product or service positioned in the market (What  specific features and attributes define the product/service and how is  its value reflected in its pricing, distribution, marketing  communications, etc.?)?
How is your organization sustainably different from your competitors  (What is the source of uniqueness and how sustainable is it from being  diminished by competitors?)?

A strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis
 A SWOT analysis is a strategy planning tool that examines both internal  and external environments for factors and trends that should shape  planning and operations over the next five years. Environmental factors  internal to the company are classified as strengths (to be leveraged) or  weaknesses (to be mitigated), while external factors are classified as  either opportunities (to be pursued) or threats (to be monitored and  responded to).

Some primer questions for the SWOT analysis include the following:
Strengths
 

What advantages does your organization have?
What do you do better than anyone else?
What unique or lowest-cost resources can you draw upon that others cannot?
What do people in your market see as your strengths?
What factors mean that you “get the sale”?
What is your organization’s unique selling proposition (USP)?
Weaknesses
 
What aspects of your product or service could you improve?
What market segments or competitive areas should you avoid?
What are people in your market likely to see as weaknesses?
What factors can make you lose sales?
Opportunities
 
What good opportunities can you spot?
What interesting trends are you aware of? Useful opportunities can come from such things as the following:
 

Changes in technology and markets on both a broad and narrow scale
Changes in government policy related to your field
Changes in social patterns, population profiles, lifestyle changes, and so on
Local events

Threats
 
What obstacles do you face?
What are your competitors doing?
Are quality standards or specifications for your job, products, or services changing?
Is changing technology threatening your position?
Do you have bad debt or cash-flow problems?
Could any of your weaknesses seriously threaten your business?

A summary of the internal environment, including the organization’s  values and the key elements of the organization architecture that  influence worker behavior.

Include the following characteristics when analyzing the internal environment:

Structure: This includes the ways the organization assigns formal  roles and responsibilities, decision-making authority, expertise and  skills, and work tasks. Think of the organization chart and how its  implied structure directs the decision making, resource allocation, and  workflow of the organization. Is it consistent with the strategy?
Systems: This comprises the information flows that coordinate  activities between groups and across the organization structure while  helping direct worker behavior, including performance management,  financial management, operating, forecasting and planning, and other  regulating mechanisms. How do these systems help align workers and their  actions with the strategy?
Culture: This consists of the unwritten rules and norms that govern  worker behavior and help coordinate the activities across structural  boundaries. Is the organization culture an enabler or impediment to the  corporate strategy? What specific behaviors embedded in the culture  support the strategy? What specific behaviors block the strategy?

A synthesis of the information evaluating the ability of the  organization to implement the strategy using Kouzes and Posner’s Five  Practices (for example, modeling the way) as a framework.

Include answers to the following:

Company Culture 

Describe the values and culture of your organization.
What are the values of your organization?
How are they reflected in the behaviors you see at work?

Employee Behaviors 

Describe the behaviors in your organization.
Are these behaviors consistent with the business strategy?
Where do they conflict with the strategy?
What new behaviors are required to align with the strategy?

Leadership 

How might you and other leaders create new behaviors to support the strategy?
What specific actions would you implement to communicate, motivate,  model the way, coach, inspire the vision, challenge the process, and  encourage the heart?

Your response to each part of the assignment should be approximately three pages.
Your final product will be in a word document and be approximately  6–8 pages in length and utilize 4–7 scholarly sources in your research.  Your paper should be written in a clear, concise, and organized manner;  demonstrate ethical scholarship in accurate representation and  attribution of sources; and display accurate spelling, grammar, and  punctuation.

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