Sunderland Business School
Global Corporate Strategy
- On Campus -
Case Study: Reconciling managerial
dichotomies @ Honda Motors in De Wit and
Module Leader: Dr. Augustus Osseo-Asare
Module Tutor: ???
Submission Date: Wednesday, 18 May 2011
Word Count: 3,500 ? 10% words
University of Sunderland: Sunderland Business School 2
This individual assignment will be assessed by means of a 3,500 ? 10% word report. The assignment has been designed to allow you to develop and use your knowledge and skills in understanding key strategic issues relating to the Global Automobile Industry. You will be required to apply the
strategic concepts and analytical techniques studied in this module. All the learning outcomes below
will be assessed:
1. Demonstrate critical understanding and application of relevant theories associated with global
corporate policies and strategies.
2. Understand the holistic nature of strategy and apply analytical techniques to solve complex
problems in real life organizations
3. Demonstrate knowledge of the strategic decision making process through critical analysis of how
strategic decision making enables an organisation to relate to its global business environment. 4. Critically evaluate and monitor the business mission, objectives and policies of international
5. Use critical reflective skills to reflect on the impact of their understanding on the problem solving
The assignment will be internally moderated by: John Dixon-Dawson
1. All work must adhere to the University regulations on ‘Cheating, Collusion and Plagiarism’
which are provided as an Appendix in your Programme Handbook. You are encouraged to use
„Harvard Referencing Style‟ and avoid „Plagiarism‟.
2. A hard copy and an electronic copy on CD or DVD of the assignment must be handed to the
Assignment Services in St Peter’s Library on or before the appointed date under cover of the
Sunderland Business School (SBS) Feedback Sheet.
3. Issue Date: Wednesday, 02 March 2011
4. Submission Date: Wednesday, 18 May 2011 (Before 2:00 pm)
Your task is to carry out a critical analysis and evaluation of the strategies adopted by global
automobile suppliers, using the information provided and other materials researched. You will be expected to select and apply appropriate theories, techniques and models studied during the module whilst having regard to the practical aspects of strategy development.
Your assignment should be presented in a business report format and should be within the range 3,500 ? 10% words (excluding executive summary/abstract, references and relevant appendices). The report
should include a title page and abstract and be fully and consistently referenced, using Harvard Referencing style. You must also submit a CD or DVD containing an electronic version of the report. This should be clearly labelled with your name, your course and the name of the case study. It is recommended that you research information additional to the case study to support your arguments. This may be obtained from a diverse range of sources and you are encouraged to research the issues in whichever way you deem appropriate.
PGBM16 – Individual Report MBA & MAIM Students March 2011 2
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In the event of failing this individual assignment, normal referral / deferral procedures will apply. This
assignment carries a weighting of 100%. The assessment will focus on the level of ANALYSIS carried
out. That is, the application of THEORETICAL CONCEPTS studied in the module to the ‘practical’
case study presented. In other words, you should proceed beyond a DESCRIPTION of the company and its actions. You should be analysing ‘why’ rather then describing ‘what’. The assignment will be
assessed and moderated by two members of staff in accordance with the marks allocated to each of the questions detailed below. 10% of the marks are set aside for the ‘presentation’ criteria.
; your ability to isolate the key strategic issues
; the coherence and depth of the analysis of those issues
; the ability to analyse the strategy context within which companies operates ; the ability to critically review and evaluate strategic decisions made by companies Methodology
; the use of relevant evidence, from material provided and personal research to support any
; the appropriateness of the methods used and theoretical models and frameworks applied ; the breadth and depth of research undertaken
Evaluation of data
; the ability to make sound recommendations or conclusions arising from the analysis ; the soundness of arguments put forward
; the summary of arguments
; report layout and format
; use of illustrative material and evidence to support arguments
; the appropriateness of length
; the quantity and accuracy of referencing
PGBM16 – Individual Report MBA & MAIM Students March 2011 3
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The Global Automobile Industry:
The global automobile industry is characterised by increasing demand in many different regions of the world. Since its establishment in 1948, Honda has grown to become one of the world's leading automakers, with a global network of subsidiaries and affiliates. In order to sustain its competitive advantage the company continues to operate under the principles of "Respect for the Individual". In line with these principles, Honda has remained on the leading edge by creating new value and providing products of the highest quality at a reasonable price, for worldwide customer satisfaction (http://world.honda.com/ ). In addition, the Company has conducted its activities with a commitment to protecting the environment and enhancing safety in a mobile society Today, Honda continues to market a wide variety of products and has earned an outstanding reputation from customers worldwide ( http://world.honda.com/investors/annualreport/2010/pdf/ )
Read the case study entitled “Reconciling managerial dichotomies at Honda Motors” by Andrew
Mair, cited in De Wit and Meyer (2004:663-679) Strategy Process, Content, Context; and carry out
appropriate analyses of the global corporate strategies adopted by Honda and other world-class automobile suppliers such as Nissan Motors, Toyota, and Chrysler, and answer the questions below. You are encouraged to use relevant data/information from company websites.
Using the information given in the Honda case study and your own understanding of „managerial
dichotomies‟ and the ‘strategic thinking‟ process, critically evaluate how Honda reconciled the
(a) „Planning‟ versus „Learning‟ (10 marks)
(b) „Positioning‟ versus „Developing internal resources‟ (10 marks)
(c) „Product-related core competencies‟ versus „Process-related core capabilities‟ (10 marks)
[30 % marks]
Critically evaluate the extent to which „Japanese management model‟ is diametrically opposed to
„Western management model‟. You are expected to use relevant information from the Honda case study and Geert Hofstede’s (1993) article entitled “Cultural constraints in management theories”, cited in
De Wit and Meyer (2004:34). You are also encouraged to use relevant data/information from your own research.
[30 % marks]
Using relevant information from the literature and company websites, critically evaluate the impact of „corporate governance‟ and „corporate social responsibility (CSR)‟ on the global financial and non-
financial performance results of Honda Motors (www.honda.com ), Nissan Motors
(www.nissan.co.uk/), and Chrysler (www.chrysler.co.uk) from 2005 to 2010.
[30 % marks]
Note: 10% marks is allocated for overall presentation
PGBM16 – Individual Report MBA & MAIM Students March 2011 4
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De Wit, B. and Meyer, R. (2010) - Strategy Process, Content, and Context International Perspective, 4th Edition, Thomson Learning
De Wit, B. and Meyer, R. (2004) - Strategy Process, Content, and Context International Perspective, 3rd Edition, Thomson Learning
Hofstede, Geert article entitled “Cultural constraints in management theories”, cited in De Wit and Meyer (2004:34)
thJohnson, G., Scholes, K. and Whittington, R. (2005) Exploring Corporate Strategy: Text and Cases, 7 Edition, Financial Times Prentice Hall.
Lynch, R. (2006) Corporate Strategy, Fourth Edition, Financial Times Prentice Hall. Mintzberg, H., Ahlstrand, B. and Lampel, J. (1998) Strategy Safari, Financial Times Prentice Hall
Websites & PDF documents:
http://world.honda.com/investors/annualreport/2010/pdf/ Annual Report 2010 Honda Motors www.nissan.co.uk/ Nissan Motors
www.toyota.co.uk Toyota Motor Corporation
www.economist.com The Economist
www.ft.com The Financial Times
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