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Last week I had an issue of team collaboration, which is why I wondered if our team failed last week. This week I tried to proactively encourage my teammates to do better and I was sure everything had been done to claw our way back into the game. I found my other teammates were really understanding in what issues there were and how they could be fixed. Peter suggested only small changes, as the team was doing nothing overtly wrong. So a few things were changed but then when rollover came our team underperformed again to the point where our shareholder value is the lowest it has ever been. I am at that point of really wanting to give up. However, there is only a couple of weeks left, and to be honest I was probably at that point of wanting to give up awhile ago and every time I try work out why we are failing I can’t work out why the actions to fix things never work.

This issue made me think about our strategy, which was to make a profit by becoming differentiated but somewhere along the line this failed and we are essentially now competing in a Red Ocean where the waters are ‘bloodied’ (Kim & Mauborgne, 2004). So how can my Mikes Bikes firm grow over the next few years? Somewhat I think now we cannot grow because as Baghai, Smit & Viguerie, (2009) state we are ‘flying blind’. There is no set strategy on how deal with adverse situations. For example in the next few years there was a plan to pay off debts and increase dividends but how can we do that now when the firm is now operating the worst it ever has? I believe as a team we are all struggling to bring together the masses of data and turn them into islands where the best opportunities for growth are (Baghai, Smit, & Viguerie, 2009). It is almost at the point now where it is too late to do anything to bring the firm back to anything substantial. I believe the mistake has also been made to try and compete in too many markets, essentially there is one bike in almost every market. How can we compete when other firms are dominating that market? Is there anything else my team really can do? I can see they are trying to do they best they know possible. After all I find this game incredibly ambiguous.

Despite their only being a couple of rollovers left I believe there is a way to come out of this, maybe not how it was intended but it is wise so set some goals for the last few weeks of planning. A good possible solution for my team would be to perhaps set a goal of coming out of this not bankrupt. I believe the small slices of the market are still there and by digging into these micro markets my firm has the potential to grow perhaps in its final years (Baghai, Smit, & Viguerie, 2009). After those market areas have been identified resources such as advertising and manufacturing need to be invested in those areas (Baghai, Smit, & Viguerie, 2009). This would perhaps be realigning ourselves to the intended goal of becoming differentiated. Another alternative I can see as a real possibility is to constantly keep reevaluating our decisions and talking to Peter. The team is trying there hardest in what they believe to be right but it doesn’t always pan out that way. Hence why I have been saying over the past few weeks nothing in business ever seems the same.

At the end of the day Mikes Bikes is only a simulation intended for me to learn from, and I certainly am learning! The best solution is to set a final goal of coming out of this not bankrupt and continue on tweaking our decisions to get there. I agree with Peter that my team is doing nothing overtly wrong and it is possibly just the market my firm is in. There is only a few weeks left and I think it is in the best interests I help the team to be optimistic as I don’t want to lose hope over the last few weeks as I really would like to come out of this saying that we tried. After all there seem to be so many twists and turns in this game! Maybe someone will do something drastic and the firm I am in will bounce back. However, for now it is best to realign our strategy with the market and try continuing on the path of being differentiated.



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

Kim, W. C. & Mauborgne, R. (2004). Blue ocean strategy. Harvard Business Review, 82(10), 75--84

1 Comment

  1. Hi Rachel

    As with week four, there was a good use of the readings. In terms of more analysis that I suggested in week 4, i feel you have really improved, there is some good analysis, which is good to see. I also feel you have used the framework/structure well and I genuinely am not sure of how you can improve. I think that even though your team isn't doing so well, you are going to get an excellent grade in your final learning journal, so your overall class grade should be very high. (smile)