MGT 599 Module 1 Case 4 – Strategic Choice for Kraft Foods Group


The Case in this course is an ongoing exercise, meaning that we will be taking an intensive look at one company over the course of our five modules. This session, we will be conducting a strategic analysis of the Kraft Foods Group. The best preparation for doing well on the Case Assignments is to complete the Background information reading and the SLP before writing the Case.

For this case, you will be identifying the primary business strategy employed by the Kraft Foods Group. You will also be providing a critical analysis evaluating that strategy in the context of the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats you identified in Modules 2 and 3.

Required Reading

Refer to the required and optional reading on strategic choices, the theme of this assignment.

Case Assignment

In a 5- to 7-page paper, respond to the following:

1.    Which of the four generic (Porter) strategies does the Kraft Foods Group follow, and how do you know?

2.    Integrate the strategy you've identified above with the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats you identified in Modules 2 and 3. Doing so should give you some specific actions the company is taking relative to its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. These actions are referred to as "strategic choices." Do the Kraft Foods Group's strategic choices align with the firm's generic strategy? If not, what are the points of disconnect? Think critically about this step, as no company achieves perfect alignment of its strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats with its chosen strategy. It is your job to uncover the discrepancies and problems.

3.    How can the Kraft Foods Group leverage its strengths and shore up its weaknesses by altering its strategic choices? How can the company take advantage of environmental opportunities and minimize environmental threats by altering its strategic choices? Be specific.

4.    Complete the paper by commenting on how your view of the Kraft Foods Group's vision and mission has changed or has been reconfirmed by this process of strategic analysis. Would you make any suggestions to revise the company's mission or vision statements, or any of its goals/objectives?

5.    Consider the Case as a formal business report that you are developing for the Board of Directors and CEO as the Kraft Foods Group's consultant. This is a professional document. Follow the format below:

o    Executive summary: This is a synopsis of the main points, conclusions, and recommendations made in the longer report. If you would like a refresher on writing an executive summary, check this website: %20ES%

o    Introduction: State the main purpose of the paper (thesis statement), what you hope to accomplish, and how you will go about doing it.

o    Main Body: The "meat" of the paper. Emphasize analysis, not just description. Delineate separate topics or sections with headings.

o    Conclusion: Summarize your paper in light of your thesis statement.

Assignment Expectations

Your paper will be evaluated using the following five (5) criteria:

•    Assignment-Driven Criteria (Precision and Breadth): Does the paper fully address all Keys to the Assignment? Are the concepts behind the Keys to the Assignment addressed accurately and precisely using sound logic? Does the paper meet minimum length requirements?

•    Critical Thinking (Critical Thinking and Depth): Does the paper demonstrate graduate-level analysis, in which information derived from multiple sources, expert opinions, and assumptions has been critically evaluated and synthesized in the formulation of a logical set of conclusions? Does the paper address the topic with sufficient depth of discussion and analysis?

•    Business Writing (Clarity and Organization): Is the paper well written (clear, developed logically, and well organized)? Are the grammar, spelling, and vocabulary appropriate for graduate-level work? Are section headings included in all papers? Are paraphrasing and synthesis of concepts the primary means of responding to the Keys to the Assignment, or is justification/support instead conveyed through excessive use of direct quotations?

•    Effective Use of Information (Information Literacy and References): Does the paper demonstrate that the student has read, understood and can apply the background materials for the module?  If required, has the student demonstrated effective research, as evidenced by student’s use of relevant and quality (library?) sources? Do additional sources used in paper provide strong support for conclusions drawn, and do they help in shaping the overall paper?

•    Citing Sources: Does the student demonstrate understanding of APA Style of referencing, by inclusion of proper end references and in-text citations (for paraphrased text and direct quotations) as appropriate? Have all sources (e.g., references used from the Background page, the assignment readings, and outside research) been included, and are these properly cited? Have all end references been included within the body of the paper as in-text citations?

Tips and Suggestions

•    Business school case-study assignments are meant to offer practice opportunities for future businesspeople who are earning their MBA degrees. Consider yourself a consultant hired by the company to make these critical assessments. There are no right or wrong answers to the Case question, as long as your position is well defended.

•    Study the theoretical concepts provided in the Background materials section of the module, and identify main strategy concepts.

•    Include a cover page and reference page, in addition to the 5-7 pages of analysis described above.

•    Include headings for all papers longer than two pages.

•    Cite and reference all sources, including those that you paraphrase. This means include citations and quotation marks for direct quotes of more than five words, and citations for information you have "borrowed" or paraphrased from other sources.
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