- MBA Boost - https://www.mbaboost.com -

Case Hints – Marketing Management Case Analysis

Strategic decision making entails coordinating seemingly unrelated facts so that they provide support for a particular course of action. Cases are learning vehicles employed to bring real world situations into the classroom. Cases provide you with an opportunity to test your understanding of previously developed concepts and to sharpen your analytical ability and judgment.

The cases assigned are intended to give you practice in assembling data to support a decision. As is often the situation in reality, cases may not have all the data you would like. You may have been intentionally provided only such information as was available to the executives at the time. Thus, you should think of yourself as a decision-maker whose information is less than perfect but who must still make decisions on key issues. Hence, it is critical that you develop a reasoned plan of attack on the basis of the data available.

Preparing a Case

In preparing an analysis, read through the case looking for the main problems that you will address. Develop a rationale for your belief that the situations identified are in fact problems. In addition, assemble the factual information presented in the case that addresses the various issues.

Once you have assembled all the information provided, develop a framework for analysis. This framework should

By following this strategy you will be able to develop an integrated analysis and you will avoid focusing on issues for which there is little data.

Writing Up a Case

Written cases should consist of both text and appendices, totaling approximately 8 pages excluding the cover page. In the formal write-up the following format should be used.

(A) Text

Statement of Issues. This section should highlight the major issues (problems, economic realities, market factors, etc.) that will be addressed in your analysis and drive your recommended course of action. Any situation will have many contributing ‘issues’. Your task here is to focus on the few (usually 3-5) most critical ones.

Recommendations. Your recommendations should provide a plan of action for the key decision maker. State the manner in which each of the key issues you have identified should be resolved. Only your recommendations should be given here, presented in sentence form as succinctly and clearly as possible. Reasons for the recommendations should appear in the analysis section.

Analysis and Conclusions. This is the heart of your report. It entails marshaling factual data which support your problem identification, and providing the Justification and reasoning behind your recommendations. It is the link between problem identification and plans of action. As part of your arguments, you will want to consider including the following:

Use subheadings to clearly detail the component parts of the analysis section.

(B) Appendices

Appendix 1. Other options considered. This appendix should reflect your analysis of rejected alternatives in outline form. For each, list the pros and cons and give a one sentence statement of why it was rejected.

Other Appendices. As necessary, these might consist of detailed analyses, tables and graphs, or lengthy descriptive paragraphs.

Other Suggestions

Assume that the reader is familiar with the situation presented in the case. Your analysis should concentrate on pinpointing key issues and on justifying your recommendations and not on descriptions of the protagonist’s company or background of the case.

Depending on the nature of the case, some of the relevant factors you may want to consider in your analysis include:

Be creative. Don’t be afraid to use your imagination, but be sure that your justification is sound.

Mechanics for Written Papers

Written cases will be graded on form and organization of material as well as on the substance of your arguments.

Reports of approximately 8 pages (excluding the cover page) should be printed on 8.5 x 11 inch paper. The text should be double-spaced throughout; the appendices may be single-spaced.

Use a separate title page. Give the course name and unique number, professor’s name, case title, date, and the names and social security numbers of all group members.

Be professional in your presentation. Correct spelling, grammar and sentence construction is expected.

Common Errors in Case Writing