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Strategy was the focus of my learning this week. The readings focussed greatly on strategy and it tied in well with the first official rollover for MikesBikes multiplayer this week. In relation to MikesBikes, strategy is an imperative part of the simulation. During the practice rollover, my team had a brief outline of where we wanted to go and what we wanted to achieve after the second practice rollover. However there was no main focus and this eventuated in my group making incremental decisions based on our instincts and whims at the time. Looking back on this process now, I can see that my team had a lack of focus. Although we knew WHAT we wanted to achieve, we didn't know HOW we were going to achieve it. Our decisions were made in the moment and this resulted in a peer, albeit brief, performance in the practice rollovers.

Considering the concept of strategy now, it is clear to see how beneficial determining a strategy actually is. Kim & Mauborgne (2002) focus a great amount of attention towards establishing a strategy canvas in order to bring decisions under one central mentality, or under one common goal. This eliminates individuals making decisions irrespective of the decisions of others and creates a more cohesive overall decision making process. Because of its high value in this aspect, many companies tend to have similar strategies, as they often seek to adopt those of more successful firms. Although this will work to an extent, what I have personally taken from the reading is that it is far better to come up with a more unique and individual strategy because when everyone is too similar, nothing begins to differentiate companies, thus the market becomes stagnant and there is no room for growth. Relating this overall concept to MikesBikes, I think what I have learnt is that it is better to have a proactive strategy, where you seek to make the first move, and decide on innovative decisions as opposed to merely reacting to the market. The risk in the process is a lot higher, as going into unmapped territory often carries a lot of uncertainty and if you are to follow the status quo, there is a greater safety net available in case of failure, the reward is far greater when pursuing the road that is more riskier. However, the apprehension of teams to take this route is obviously understandable, which makes strategy a complex concept full of risk and uncertainty.

Magretta (2002), emphasises the need to combine an effective business model with a proper strategy as the combination of the two is necessary in differentiating the various companies in terms of their overall performance. In our MikesBikes performance, our business plan in terms of the processes and activities we undertook, was sound and carefully planned. We budgeted properly, effectively utilised our marketing and properly determined the effective quality and operations of the business. However due to a lack of strategy, we ended up performing very badly. This taught me that the combination of the two aspects is definitely necessary in order to effectively perform in the simulation.

I look forward to next weeks rollover and hope to implement what I have learnt this week in my performance for the next rollover.

Reference List:

Kim, W. C. & Mauborgne, R. (2002). Charting your company¿s future. Harvard Business Review, 80(6), 76--83

Magretta, J. (2002). Why business models matter. Harvard Business Review, 80(5), 86--92

2 Comments

  1. Thank you for the opportunity to review your learning journal. The main thing of which you have demostrated learning is how to build your Mikesbikes companies strategy. You have identified that it is better to create your own unique and individual strategy rather than follow the industry and compete at all the points other teams and follow certain moves that work well for them. So as you have said your main point of learning is how to be a lead mover and make your own decisions rather than following competitors and the market.
    As far as Kolbs experimental learning cycle goes you have followed it quite well. You have a bit of concrete evidnce from your practice rollovers which you have learnt from and have reflected on what happened, mainly, in the identification oh how well things went through the practice and where there is room for improvement. The one room for improvement may be for the absract conceptualisation. You need to go more in depth to make sense of your experiences in a way that will help you to do betetr next time.
    As far as the simulation goes, this review indicates you are at analysis, with a small bit of synthesis on Blooms taxonomy model. You have identified what went well and what didn't go so well in your experiences, but only offer a little constructive relfection on how you are going to excell next time. You said you had a brief outline in the practice and have since learned to have a more "proactive" strategy, but do not really outline what that is (except i guess there is some secrecy needed so it's understandable.
    Thanks for the read, i found what you took from the readings slightly different from how i interpreted them, which is interesting to see the different perspecitve.  

  2. Hi Dylan,

    Thank you for the opportunity to review your learning journal. The main thing of which you have demonstrated learning is identifying and coming to comprehend the concepts of a strategy canvas and business model and their individual merits to a business. Along with this you have learnt how businesses use each of these tools to effectively achieve proper business practice and you have also learnt how to optimize this through their combined use. It is clear to see that you didn't know this before hand as you were not able to apply this knowledge to your performance in MikesBikes.

    You follow Daudelin's teachings in your application of the knowledge you have learnt through the readings to your life experiences, focussing on your team's MikesBikes performance. You relate what you have learnt to real life examples, allowing you to better realise what you have learnt in a more practical way. You also relate how the utilisation of a 'strategy' will help your team become more successful in their performance. This correlation between what you have learnt and how you intend to use this knowledge is keeping within Daudelin's teachings of applying your learnt knowledge.

    In terms of Bloom's Taxonomy, you have achieved the level of 'application' in terms of your learning. You have taken what you have learnt in the readings and have then processed how this information can be applied (and has already been applied) to your experiences. This is seen in your focus on the use of 'strategy' in businesses and how to utilise this effectively in conjunction with a business model. You then apply how to use a strategy to improve your team's performance in MikesBikes.

    One improvement you could make, is by taking what you have learnt, but instead of giving a broad overview of what you have learnt, try to focus on specific points and develop them in depth. This would be more beneficial to your learning process as you are taking in the pieces of knowledge that impact you the most, and trying to fully understand them in their entirety, as opposed to just achieving broad, surface knowledge on the overall content.

    Thank you Dylan for sharing your work with me. It is clear that you have put a lot of thought into your work this week and it has shown me how to better structure my answers. Good luck for the rest of your semester!