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The result of this week’s rollover is certainly a wake up call for me and my team, the disadvantage of our strategy is becoming more clear and the i am certain that our competitors have seen it and took advantage of it.


One of the key problems as Baghai and Viguerie (2009) described is that our firm is flying blindly with our strategy, having a blind faith to our strategy would work regardless the potential disadvantage that this strategy had, therefore did not put in too much effort to prevent the situation like this would happen. I kept asking myself what did i miss? What could i have done to make this strategy work? Or more simply what went wrong? And now i know.


The key to answer this problem is finding the balance between cost and revenue. Our firm spent too much money and expects an over optimistic return on our investment, therefore better resource allocation needs to the implemented to maintain our advantage. One of the solution could be using the data at hand and find the market that is more likely to grow instead of spread out the resources to multiple products and expects a return on investment on every single one of them. Just like Baghai & Viguerie (2009) have suggested low growth area should be jettisoned.


Speaking of data, due to the fact that Mike’s bike simulation produce the data for you and every gets the uniformed data, it sort of creates a perfect market where the competitor can see what you are doing and respond to personally i think is convenient, but it is unlikely to happen in the reality. Just like Davenport (2006) suggested it takes years to have a function analytic system, with the right people, culture and technology. And Mike’s Bike just gives it to you for free, this has its advantages and disadvantages, however i think it really depends on the people who can find a trend or pattern to develop the best strategies would benefit the most.


Overall it is interesting to finding out the what we did wrong and what we could do to fix this situation, this weeks event surely served as a wake up call and hopefully we could find a way out this ocean of competition.


References

Baghai, M., Smit, S., & Viguerie, P. (2009). Is your growth strategy flying blind? Harvard Business Review, 87(5), 86---96. 


Davenport, T. H. (2006). Competing on analytics. Harvard Business Review, 84(1), 98--107.

3 Comments

  1. Hi Martin,

    Thank you for the read. I have found that your writing described your week in a very brief manner.

    The problem you identified was that you knew there were disadvantages with your strategy but chose to use it anyway minimizing the effort you put in to preventing the negative effects. Why did you have “blind faith” in your strategy? Are you considering the performance of other firms too? You search through past events to describe a possible cause, i.e. your firm spent too much money and expected an over optimistic return on your investment. You then identified some possible actions which included: (1) Better resource allocation and (2) Using the data at hand and find the market that is more likely to grow instead of spread out the resources to multiple products and expects a return on investment on every single one of them.

    You have followed Daudelin’s stages of reflection (1996) at a very minimal level. Although your journal is reflective in some sense, it may have been more effective to provide an in-depth analysis of you week instead for a richer reflection. Remember that “when engaging in reflection, one takes an experience from the outside world, brings it inside the mind, turns it over, makes connections to other experiences, and filters it through personal biases.” (Daudelin, 1996).

    Stage 2: You could have used earlier examples from your group that have shaped why you are “flying blind” with your strategy. For example, your group may have created this culture that just analyses your own firm’s performance, then hope for the best? As stated by Daudelin, it is important to review past behaviour with intensity. Questions that are helpful to answer from the reading are: “Why was that important?” “Why do you think it happened?” “Why were you feeling that way?”

    Stage 3: Formulation/testing of a tentative theory to explain the problem. After identifying the problem, then searching through past memory, you would have been able to form a tentative theory which sums up what you have done and how you might have done things differently.

    You did not explicitly consider stage 3. I feel that if you were to use stage 3, you may have come up with some very effective actions to take that go far beyond any MikesBikes related actions. These actions could possibly target underlying issues that are causing the group to have blind faith in your strategy. For example, organise a feedback session to try and understand why the group expect optimistic returns? Does everyone have a clear understanding of their department?

    Overall though, your journal is a personal reflection and the feedback I have provided is optional to consider and my own opinion. Your writing is clear and easy to read. All the best for your final journal and your summative journal.

    Thank you.

    1. Thank you to put in the effort for providing this honest feedback, it is clear and very specific, and i found it very helpful, i totally agree with you that this journal can be done a lot better, more effort should be putted in.

  2. Hi Martine,

    First of all, I realized that I have reviewed your journal in week 4. In week 4, I suggested you to use theories while solving a problem. You are certainly improved on it because you used the readings wisely and it also gave you better ideas for the decisions for your Mikes Bikes in this journal!

    You clearly articulated the problem and found that the most important thing is balancing cost and revenue. That is exactly what my team have suffered for last few years(rollovers). We spent too much money and expected huge (I'd say double the cost) revenue in return. However, now you and your team know the problem so I'm sure your next rollover will be much better and it will recover quickly if you are aware of net asset.

    Your last two paragraphs do not link to your problem. I think it would be better if you analyse the main problem more in depth (e.g., where and how much is the firm spending? any unnecessary expenditure?). After that, it is better to relate to the readings and formulate theory into it. Lastly, you need to plan actions (e.g., what to do with your team; when decision making).

    Overall, I enjoyed reading your journal. It will be better if you avoid few minor grammar mistakes for the next one. Good luck and all the best! (smile)