GSD 2011 7307 Business Strategy Assignments 2011.03.20_

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GSD 2011 7307 Business Strategy Assignments  2011.03.20_ Powered By Docstoc
					Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                     Page 1 of 12


Class              1
Topic              Welcome and Introduction
Case               None

Required           None. Please explore the i-Commons site.
Reading
Optional Reading
Assignment         Be prepared to discuss your hopes and expectations for the course.
Discussion         1. What is your understanding of what “competitive strategy” means in the
Questions             context of architectural and other firms in the built environment?
                   2. What is your understanding of what “sustainability” means?
                   3. What do you hope to get from this course?
                   4. How might you contribute to the learning of others in this course?
Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                              1
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                    Page 2 of 12

Class              2
Topic              Fundamentals of Strategic Planning:
                    Mission, Purpose, Vision
                    Industry Value Chain
                    “Back of Envelope” Financial Analysis
Case               “Savannah West” (Reader also i-Commons)
Required           None
Reading
Optional Reading   “Learning by the Case Method” (reader)
                   “What is Strategy” (reader)
                   Porter, Competitive Strategy, Ch 14, “Vertical Integration” (i-Commons)
Assignment         Prepare to discuss the roles that Willie Welsh and his company Engineered
                   Concepts play in the Design and Construction Value System.
Discussion         1. What roles does Welsh take on in this situation?
Questions          2. What financial risks does he accept? How might he isolate himself from
                      those risks?
                   3. What non-financial risks does he accept?
                   4. What do you see as the benefits and drawbacks of vertical integration?
                   5. Is the real estate and construction industry fragmented? If so, how would
                      you suggest coping with fragmentation?
                   6. How should Welsh grow his business?
                   7. Should Allison Porter make the loan?

Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                             2
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                      Page 3 of 12

Class              3
Topic                 Segmenting Services and Buyers
                      Vertical integration
                      Generic Strategy: Low Cost
Case               URBI and the City Licensee Managers
Required           None
Reading
Optional Reading   “The Five Competitive Forces that Shape Strategy”
Assignment
Discussion         1. Consider the Home Production Line. What are the key success factors in
Questions          this department? What choices and tradeoffs did URBI make in establishing
                   this asset?

                   2. Consider the Client Production Line. What are they key success factors for
                   this portion of the business? What choices and tradeoffs did URBI make in
                   developing this process?

                   3. Which City Licensee Manager and Land Partner pair is your choice for the
                   final spot? Why?

                   4. What are the main components of URBI's competitive strategy?

                   5. Could URBI successfully transport its business model to other countries?
                    Why or why not? What are the implications of your conclusions with respect
                   to business defensibility, for environmental sustainability, and for government
                   policy?
Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                              3
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                      Page 4 of 12

Class              4
Topic                 Market Segmenting Services and Buyers
                      Five Forces: Segment Attractiveness
                      Generic Strategy: Differentiation
Case               “Architect’s Collaborative, Inc.” (Reader) (You will have to obtain this from
                   HBSP)
Required           None
Reading
Optional Reading   “Market Customization: Market Segmentation, Timing, and Positioning”
                   (HBSP Reader)
                   Porter, Competitive Strategy, Ch 9, “Competitive Strategy in Fragmented
                   Industries” (iCommons)
Assignment         PAPER #1 DUE AT START OF CLASS - EVERYONE
                   Please post in i-Commons Drop Box
                   5 Pages Maximum including charts and exhibits. Charts and exhibits can be
                   hand drawn and labeled and scanned in.
                   Prepare a set of frameworks for a discussion of strategic choices at The
                   Architect’s Collaborative. In particular, consider: what are TAC’s role(s)
                   in the industry value chain? How would you represent TAC’s matrix of
                   services x buyer types in order to tell a story that helps them? What is
                   your assessment of the “five forces” attractiveness of key cells in the
                   matrix?
Discussion         Prepare to discuss the strategic options of TAC The Architect’s Collaborative at
Questions          the time of the case.
                   1. This case takes place in the mid-1970’s. What has changed in the practice
                        of architecture since then? What has not changed?
                   2. Why did TAC lose the Salisbury Hospital project? Should they have won
                      it?
                   3. What kinds of work, and for what kinds of clients, do you think TAC
                      should focus on? Why?
                   4. What should the principals of TAC do now (at the time of the case)? Why?
                      How?

Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                             4
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                        Page 5 of 12

Class              5
Topic                 Economics of Eco-Cities
                      Pilot Projects and Differentiation
                      Getting to Scale
Case               Masdar and Tianjin: Eco-Cities
Required
Reading
Optional Reading   “Fiat and Fairness: Why China Can Build Cities Overnight and India Cannot”
Assignment
Discussion         1. Of the two cities, which concept do you prefer in terms of
Questions          sustainability? Why? How did you define sustainability to get to your
                   answer?


                   2. Which of the two sponsors, Masdar Corporation and the Sino-
                   Singapore Joint Steering council, has the superior business model? Why?


                   3. Which concept will be the bigger financial success? How would you
                   measure that success?


                   4. From an urban planning point of view, which master plan do you
                   prefer? Why?


                   5. Which concepts raised in this discussion do you feel are most
                   important to the planning and delivery of other sustainable cities?




Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                              5
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                      Page 6 of 12




Class              6
Topic                 Supply Chain Optimization
                      3D Modeling tied to Databases
                      Customer and Service Selection
Case               “Herman Miller: Innovation by Design” (Reader)
Required           None
Reading
Optional Reading   “How Information Gives you Competitive Advantage”
Assignment
Discussion         This case is nominally about the furniture business. However, there are many
Questions          choices in how this company organized its service business that can be used to
                   discuss strategy for delivery of services like real estate development and
                   management. There also are applications of technology including 3D modeling,
                   visualization, and supply chain management that help to illustrate the potential
                   of some of these tools.
                   This case should help to reinforce some of the concepts from the course around
                   vertical integration, market segmentation, leadership, and innovation.
                   1. Where does SQA fit in the "industry value system" for office buildings?
                   2. On what market segments have they chosen to focus? Why?
                   3. What are Z-Axis and PMC? How do they work? Do they matter? What
                      choices did the SQA team make?
                   4. Do EnSync and PMC lead to sustainable competitive advantage? Why or
                      why not?
                   5. How might Miller SQA grow beyond furniture - say to partitions, floors,
                       ceilings, walls? Do you see any ways in which these kinds of capabilities
                       might impact the business of construction? Of architecture?

Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                             6
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                      Page 7 of 12


Class              7
Topic                 Entrepreneurship in Sustainability
                      Sales Channels
                      Financials: Income Statement
Case               TerraCycle, Inc.
Required
Reading
Optional Reading   “The Sustainability Imperative: Eco-Premium”
Assignment         PAPER # 2 DUE at start of class – First 1/3 of CLASS LIST ONLY.
                   Please upload to the iCommons site.
                   5 pages maximum, including any exhibits, diagrams, charts. Diagrams can be
                   hand drawn and scanned.
                   Paper assignment:
                   Using the tools of the first several classes including the industry value
                   chain, basic principles of strategic planning, and your interpretation of the
                   income statement and balance sheet, what is your analysis of the best steps
                   for TerraCycle to take next as a company? Please explain your logic and
                   clearly state your recommendations.
Discussion         The objective of this class it to introduce the idea of strategy and financial
Questions          statements in operating businesses which have a “green” ambition. This
                   material was written as an accounting case but we will use it to consider
                   the basics of sales channels, “ecological capitalism,” and overview of income
                   statement and balance sheet for a business.

                   1. What is the Industry Value Chain for TerraCycle? What roles do they play?

                   2. How might you segment the industry in terms of buyer types and channels,
                   and products/ services delivered? Where is TerraCycle and competitors?

                   3. Where can TerraCycle get competitive advantage? How?

                   4. How would you quantify the value of TerraCycle’s “ecological capitalism”
                   approach?

                   6. How can TerraCycle make money? What economic return would you see
                   for their investors? Why?

                   7. What should the CFO recommend?
Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                              7
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                      Page 8 of 12

Class              8
Topic                 Entrepreneurship in Info Tech in AEC
                      Knowledge Management
                      Financials: Balance Sheet
Case               AEC Systems Business Plan
Required
Reading
Optional Reading   “Exploiting the Virtual Value Chain”
                   “Disruptive Technologies: Riding the Wave”
Assignment         PAPER # 2 DUE at start of class – Middle 1/3 of CLASS LIST ONLY.
                   Please upload to the iCommons site.
                   5 pages maximum, including any exhibits, diagrams, charts. Diagrams can be
                   hand drawn and scanned.
                   Paper assignment:
                   Using the tools of the first several classes including the industry value
                   chain, basic principles of strategic planning, and your interpretation of the
                   revenue projections, what is your analysis of the merits of AEC Systems as
                   an investment? Assuming that AEC Systems raises the $1.4 million, what
                   are the major components of what their business strategy should be for the
                   next 18-24 months?

Discussion          This startup company founded by a GSD graduate (truly) is seeking to raise its
Questions          first round of professional venture capital. We will use this case for a general
                   discussion of how venture capital works, to consider whether this seems like a
                   good business, and to contemplate how this business might exploit the virtual
                   value chain and perhaps disrupt the AEC (Architecture, Engineering,
                   Construction) industry.

                       1. Is the company addressing a meaningful problem?
                       2. How big can this company be in terms of total annual revenue? If it go
                          that big, what do you think its value would be?
                       3. The company is trying to raise $1.4 million in venture capital. What do
                          you think is the fair value of this company before bringing in this added
                          cash?
                       4. If you were a professional “angel investor” who sought to place
                          $50,000 to $100,000 each across a portfolio of 8-10 startups, would you
                          invest in AEC Systems?
                       5. If the company is successful, how might it change the competitive
                          strategies of architects and contractors?

Revision Date      March 20, 2011




                                              8
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                       Page 9 of 12

Class              9
Topic                 Cradle to Cradle
                      Choices and Focus
                      Paying for Sustainability
Case               Cradle to Cradle Design at Herman Miller: Moving Toward Sustainability
Required
Reading
Optional Reading   “Going Green, Profitably”
Assignment         PAPER # 2 DUE at start of class – Final 1/3 of CLASS LIST ONLY.
                   Please upload to the iCommons site.
                   5 pages maximum, including any exhibits, diagrams, charts. Diagrams can be
                   hand drawn and scanned.
                   Paper assignment:
                   Consider the “office chairs” unit of this huge company. Using the tools of
                   the first six classes including the industry value chain, basic principles of
                   strategic planning, and your interpretation of the financial implications of
                   the Mirra chair decisions, what would you recommend Herman Miller do
                   about the Mirra components, and when? Please explain your logic and
                   clearly state your recommendations.
Discussion         We will use this case to draw out the issues in supply chain analysis, in
Questions          materials selection, and in quantifying “green.”

                   The Herman Miller Company is an industry leading product design,
                   manufacturing, and distribution company. They are wrestling with the impacts
                   of finding substitutes for PVC in an important new product. The company has
                   made representations about their commitment to sustainability. How much will
                   it cost them to keep that commitment? What are the implications of their
                   choice?

                   Discussion Questions:
                   1. Who cares about this decision and why? Consider entities inside and
                   outside of Herman Miller including vendors, competitors, retailers, customers,
                   and other influencers.
                   2. What are the economic costs of switching from PVC to another material
                   for the arm pads of the Mirra chair? What are the numbers and how reliable are
                   they?
                   3. How does this decision impact the future of Herman Miller? Why? What
                   should Drew Schramm do?
                   4. How could this approach be extended to real estate sustainability?

Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                               9
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                  Page 10 of 12

Class              10
Topic                  Innovation in Building Products
                       Going to market
                       Capturing the benefit of energy efficiency
Case               KONE: The MonoSpace Launch in Germany
Required
Reading
Optional Reading   “Climate Business, Business Climate”
Assignment
Discussion
                   1.   Where does KONE fit in the industry value system? How are elevators
Questions               sold?
                   2.   How does KONE compete: What generic strategies is KONE pursuing
                        NOW in each segment? What strategies are their competitors pursuing?
                   3.   In what ways does KONE believe Monospace to be differentiated? Is this
                        realistic? Do the customers care?
                   4.   How does KONE signal differentiation?
                   5.   How would you manage the rollout in Germany? Why?
                   6.   What would you recommend they do?


Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                              10
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                       Page 11 of 12

Class        11
Topic            Mechanical System Payback
                 NNN Lease; Return on Rent
                 Measuring the Green Premium
Case         “Design Creates Fortune: 2000 Tower Oaks Boulevard” (iCommons)
Required     Spreadsheet: “2000 Tower Oaks – Live Spreadsheet for Mechanical Systems”
Reading      (iCommons)
Optional     (all on iCommons)
Reading      2000 Tower Oaks A Cosmic Force (NAIOP Magazine)
             2000 Tower Oaks Return on Rent
Assignment   PAPER #3 DUE AT START OF CLASS - EVERYONE
             This can be physically handed in or posted in iCommons dropbox
             5 Pages Maximum including charts and exhibits. Charts and exhibits can be hand
             drawn and labeled.
             Prepare a strategic analysis for The Tower Companies going forward as a firm,
             with particular reference to the choices made at 2000 Tower Oaks Boulevard.
             Use the tools of the course which you feel appropriate. Be sure to discuss any
             sustainable (enduring) competitive advantage that The Tower Companies may
             realize with respect to the strategies to which they are committed, as expressed at
             2000 Tower Oaks Boulevard.
Discussion   The following questions can also be considered for your paper and for the class
Questions    discussion. However, you probably will not have room in the paper to discuss all of
             these concepts in depth.
             1. Sustainability. Consider the mechanical systems. On the granular ROI level,
                 consider the chiller, the enthalpy wheel, and the CO2 sensors. What is the
                 relationship between the projected cost savings for each component analyzed
                 individually, as compared to the savings of the three part system? What are the key
                 sensitivities? What are the boundaries of temperature and efficiency that need to
                 be realized for an economic payback?
             2. Economics.
                      a. Consider leasing terms and conditions and allocation of energy cost
                          savings. How does the selection of the various lease terms impact the
                          return on investment for the landlord with respect to the system of chillers,
                          enthalpy wheel, and CO2?
                      b. Productivity and Return on Rent (Exhibits 10 and 11). What does one have
                          to believe for the value economics in Exhibit 10 to be supportable? What
                          do you believe? Might this equation change over time?
                      c. Landlord point of view. Using back of envelope analysis, what do you
                          think of this real estate investment as planned? In the current market?
             3. Strategy. Will Tower Companies’ investment in green features and Vedic design
                 be worth it to Tower in the long run? Why or why not? What future
                 circumstances/scenarios are assumed in your answer?
Revised      Jan 23, 2011



                                               11
Harvard Design School
Business Strategy, Economics, and Sustainability
7307                  Spring 2011

ASSIGNMENTS                                                                    Page 12 of 12


Class              12
Topic                  Competitive Strategy in Architecture
                       Knowledge Management
                       Defending a Sustainability Head Start
Case               Arup: Building the Water Cube
Required
Reading
Optional Reading   “Sustainability and Competitive Advantage”
Assignment
Discussion              1. What challenges did the Water Cube team face in its innovation
Questions                  journey?

                        2. What, specifically, enabled the team’s success in producing an award
                           winning building?

                        3. How does Arup enable professionals to produce innovative, high-
                           performing results? What structural, managerial, or other attributes
                           contribute to Arup’s success in producing ambitious and innovative
                           structures?

                        4. What general insights for managing innovation can you identify in the
                           Water Cube project?

                        5. To whom should Arup be marketing now?

                        6. Is there anything in the Water Cube story which you think contributes
                           to a defensible strategy around knowledge management?
Revision Date      Jan 23, 2011




                                             12

				
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