Leadership and Strategic Development Processes Questions and Answers
- Number of Words: 2000
Case Study Background & Questions
Please read carefully the case evidence on Unilever, which is contained in the following sources:
1) Case Study: Unilever (“Paul Polman: turnaround and development of strategy at Unilever”, pp.750-757) in Exploring Strategy: Text and Cases, by Johnson, G., Whittington, R., Scholes, K., Angwin, D., and Regner, P. (2017),11th Edition, Pearson Education. (https://r2.vlereader.com/Reader?ean=9781292145136)
2) Corporate Website: https://www.unilever.co.uk/
3) 2020 Annual Report: https://www.unilever.com/investors/annual-report-and-accounts/archive-of-annual-report-and-accounts/
The case study gives you background information and overview of the company as well the opportunities and challenges it has faced in recent years. The corporate website has information on the company history as well as some key facts and figures. The 2020 annual report provides financial information about the organisation and its current strategic direction. Since the case study has been published a few years ago, you should be using the corporate website and annual report to access updated information. You should be using these sources in combination to answer the Part A of this assignment.
Part A of your coursework assessment requires you to answer two questions using a report structure.
1) Analyse Unilever’s business strategy using Porter’s Generic Competitive Strategies framework. Use the data and information from the case study, corporate website, and the latest annual report.
2) Critically evaluate Porter’s Generic Competitive Strategies framework by identifying its advantages and limitations, and then develop three recommendations on how its limitations might be overcome. Use academic sources to support your arguments.
The assessment in Part A is a case analysis and you should note that a case analysis is not a conceptual explanation or discussion, but rather the application of concepts and frameworks to interpret the case information, analyse key events and statements, and reach evaluative judgements. The concepts and frameworks are covered in the lectures, tutorials and prescribed reading and the guidance below gives you a few pointers on how you need to use this knowledge to answer the questions. In developing your analysis and arguments, you should use supporting evidence from the information contained in the case study, corporate website and the latest annual report.
Your answers must take into account the three sources listed above. The case study is the primary source of information. The corporate website should be used to obtain updated information. The annual report gives you an overview of the efforts undertaken by the organisation during its last financial exercise. The core textbook and academic sources should be used as well to critically analyse the framework. The e-library should be used to source academic journals for the critical analysis in Question 2. You may use secondary sources in addition to these recommended sources if you wish, but the case analysis must be based primarily on the recommended sources.
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