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Practice Final Part 5

Good strategy execution requires:
A. a team effort with all managers having strategy executing responsibility in their areas of authority, and making all employees active participants in the strategy execution process.

B. incremental changes to current operating practices be implemented to ensure existing resource capabilities are not impacted too severely.

C. little consensus building, despite the magnitude of the proposed changes, because employees know the benefits gained from the planning process.

D. the strategy-critical value chain activities to be simplified so that all company personnel can be cognizant of the benefits of the execution parameters.

E. All of these.

A. a team effort with all managers having strategy executing responsibility in their areas of authority, and making all employees active participants in the strategy execution process
Which of the following is NOT among the principal managerial components of the strategy execution process?
A. Building an organization with the competencies, capabilities, and resource strengths needed to execute strategy successfully.

B. Instituting policies and procedures that facilitate rather than impede strategy execution.

C. Deciding which core competencies and value chain activities to leave as is and which ones to overhaul and improve.

D. Adopting best practices and pushing for continuous improvement in how value chain activities are performed.

E. Tying rewards directly to the achievement of strategic and financial targets and to good strategy execution.

C. Deciding which core competencies and value chain activities to leave as is and which ones to overhaul and improve
The two best signs of good strategy execution are:
A. whether the company is challenging its current performance targets and whether value chain activities are fully integrated within the strategic response criteria.

B. whether managers are personally leading the change process and whether they are meeting deadlines set for budgetary requirements.

C. whether the company is meeting or beating its performance targets and whether they are performing value chain activities in a manner that is conducive to companywide operating excellence.

D. whether managers are fully behind the changes and whether the company’s value chain managers are executing them diligently.

E. All of these.

C. whether the company is meeting or beating its performance targets and whether they are performing value chain activities in a manner that is conducive to companywide operating excellence
What makes the managerial task of executing strategy so challenging and demanding is:
A. the trial-and-error experimentation that is required to come up with a workable organizational structure.

B. the demanding people-management skills required, the resistance to change that has to be overcome, and the perseverance necessary to get a variety of initiatives launched and kept moving along.

C. the time and effort it takes to build core competencies.

D. the time, training, and creative effort it takes to empower employees and teach them responsible decision making.

E. the supervisory requirements associated with getting company personnel to do things the right way.

B. the demanding people-management skills required, the resistance to change that has to be overcome, and the perseverance necessary to get a variety of initiative launched and kept moving along
Implementing and executing a company’s strategy:
A. is primarily the job of the company’s board of directors since they direct the actions and policies of the top senior executives in executing the strategy.

B. is a task for every manager and the whole management team, but ultimate responsibility for success or failure falls upon the top senior executives, especially the chief executive officer of the company.

C. is primarily a responsibility of all company personnel because all personnel are active participants in the strategy execution process and their actions have a huge impact on the ultimate outcome.

D. should be delegated to a chief strategy implementer appointed by the chief executive officer.

E. is primarily a task for middle and lower-level managers because it is they who have responsibility for pushing the needed changes all the way down to the lowest levels of the organization.

B. is a task for every manager and the whole management team, but ultimate responsibility for success or failure falls upon the top senior executives, especially the chief executive officer of the company
Which of the following is one of the first steps to take in launching the strategy execution process?
A. Ensure all requirements of the value chain are fulfilled.

B. Form a mission statement as a basis for managers to achieve organizational objectives.

C. Go on the offensive by employing moves to make its product offering more distinctive and appealing to buyers.

D. Put together a talented management team with the right mix of experiences, skills, and abilities to get things done.

E. Strive to be more profitable than rivals and aim for a competitive edge based on bigger profit margins.

D. Put together a talented management team with the right mix of experiences, skills, and abilities to get things done.
The paramount aim in building a management team should be to:
A. select people who are committed to decentralizing decision making and empowering employees.

B. assemble a critical mass of talented managers who can function as agents of change, work well together as a team, and produce organizational results that are dramatically better than what one or two star managers acting individually can achieve.

C. choose managers experienced in controlling costs and flattening the organization structure.

D. select people who have similar management styles, leadership approaches, business philosophies, and personalities.

E. choose managers who believe in having a strong corporate culture and deeply ingrained core values.

B. assemble a critical mass of talented managers who can function as agents of change, work well together as a team, and produce organizational results that are dramatically better than what one or two star managers acting individually can achieve
The capability building process:
A. requires two things: (1) developing the ability to do something, however imperfectly or inefficiently, and (2) molding these efforts into an organizational ability and as experience grows and personnel perform the activity consistently well and at an acceptable cost, it is transformed into a tried-and-true competence and as they continue to polish and refine their know-how into further improvements, they then create a real competitive capability.

B. entails establishing a new department with the primary responsibility of developing the expertise to give the company the needed core competencies and capabilities.

C. stands a better chance of succeeding if a company employs a traditional functional organization structure.

D. is made much easier if a company abstains from outsourcing important value chain activities.

E. aims at turning the company’s distinctive competencies into core competencies.

A. requires two things: (1) developing the ability to do something, however imperfectly or inefficiently, and (2) molding these efforts into an organizational ability and as experience grows and personnel perform the activity consistently well and at an acceptable cost, it is transformed into a tried-and-true competence and as they continue to polish and refine their know-how into further improvements, they then create a real competitive capability
Which of the following is NOT one of the traits of the capability building process?
A. Core competencies or capabilities are usually the product of astute company efforts to hire and train talented employees.

B. Normally, core competencies and competitive capabilities emerge incrementally as a company acts to bolster skills that contributed to earlier successes.

C. Core competencies or capabilities are most often bundles of skills and know-how that grow out of the combined efforts of cross-functional work groups and departments that perform complementary activities at several places in the firm’s value chain.

D. The key to leveraging a core competence into a distinctive competence (or transforming a capability into a competitively superior capability) is concentrating more effort and talent than rivals on strengthening the competence or capability to achieve a competitive advantage.

E. Evolving changes in customer needs and competitive conditions often require tweaking and adjusting a company’s portfolio of competencies and intellectual capital to keep its capabilities freshly honed and on the cutting edge.

A. Core competencies or capabilities are usually the product of astute company efforts to hire and train talented employees
Which of the following is NOT one of the traits of core competencies and/or competitive capabilities?
A. The key to leveraging core competencies into competitive advantage is concentrating sufficient effort and talent on deepening and strengthening them so the firm achieves dominating depth and gains the capability to outperform rivals by a meaningful margin.

B. Core competencies have to be tweaked and adjusted to keep them fresh and responsive to changing customer needs and market conditions.

C. Core competencies typically are lodged in the combined efforts of different work groups and departments.

D. Core competencies generally grow out of company efforts to master a strategy-critical technology or to invent and patent a valuable technology.

E. Core competencies tend to emerge gradually rather than blossom quickly.

D. Core competencies generally grow out of company efforts to master a strategy-critical technology or to invent and patent a valuable technology
Managerial actions to develop core competencies and competitive capabilities internally generally take one of two forms. What are they?
A. Either strengthening the company’s base of skills, knowledge, and experience or coordinating and integrating the efforts of various work groups and departments.

B. Either putting in high incentive bonuses to reward individual employees who train hard to develop the desired capability or launching an extensive training effort to develop the capability quickly with newly hired employees.

C. Either using benchmarking and the adoption of best practices to imitate a capability that rivals have already developed or empowering a team of employees to develop the capability however they best fit.

D. Either using developed dynamic capabilities or acquiring the capability from outside sources.

E. All of these.

A. Either strengthening the company’s base of skills, knowledge, and experience or coordinating and integrating the efforts of various work groups and departments
What is the advantage of acquiring capabilities through merger and acquisition?
A. Speed, since developing new capabilities internally can take many years of effort.

B. Empowerment, since you can capture the essence of the capability and refocus the firm.

C. Price, as it is always cheaper to buy a whole company and pull out the capabilities individually.

D. Assets, as it the basis of the sale.

E. All of these.

A. Speed, since developing new capabilities internally can take many years of effort
The strategic importance of deliberately trying to develop organizational competencies and capabilities is:
A. lower costs for employee training.

B. improved strategy execution and a potential for competitive advantage.

C. an increased ability to reduce total operating costs.

D. the added ease with which strategic fit and resource fit benefits can be captured.

E. the enhanced ability to avoid the perils of outsourcing.

B. improved strategy execution and a potential for competitive advantage
Organizing a company’s work effort to promote successful strategy execution involves:
A. deciding how much to spend on training managers and employees.

B. deciding which value chain activities to perform in-house and which to outsource, and making internally performed strategy-critical value chain activities the main building blocks in the organization structure.

C. choosing an organization structure that is a tight fit with the corporate culture.

D. hiring a capable management team.

E. instituting a compensation structure that reduces employee turnover and thus stabilizes the makeup of work teams.

B. deciding which value chain activities to perform in-house and which to outsource, and making internally performed strategy-critical value chain activities the main building blocks in the organizational structure
When a company uses outsourcing to zero in on even better performance of those truly strategy-critical activities where its expertise is most needed, then it may also be able to:
A. create a values-based corporate culture that excels in product innovation.

B. decrease internal bureaucracies, flatten its organizational structure, shorten the time it takes to respond to changing market conditions, and capitalize on its partnerships with outsiders to enhance its arsenal of capabilities and thus contribute to better strategy execution.

C. devote more resources to its social responsibility strategy, better empower employees, and reduce employee turnover.

D. better police compliance with ethical standards, lower overall operating costs, and create two or more distinctive competencies.

E. All of these.

B. decrease internal bureaucracies, flatten its organizational structure, shorten the time it takes to respond to changing market conditions, and capitalize on its partnerships with outsiders to enhance its arsenal of capabilities and thus contribute to better strategy execution
Outsourcing critics contend that shifting responsibility for performing value chain activities to outside specialists:
A. has the disadvantage of raising fixed costs and reducing variable costs and makes it harder to develop distinctive competencies.

B. can hollow out a company’s knowledge base and capabilities, leaving it at the mercy of outsider suppliers, and short of the resource strengths to be a master of its own destiny.

C. results in less organizational flexibility and leads to sometimes exorbitant costs in collaborating with outside suppliers and strategic partners.

D. slows down decision making on key strategic issues because outside suppliers have to be consulted first.

E. lowers the morale of company employees, dampens a company’s ability to implement best practices, and results in greater bureaucracy and slower decision making.

B. can hollow out a company’s knowledge base and capabilities, leaving it at the mercy of outsider suppliers, and short of the resource strengths to be a master of its own destiny
The primary building blocks within a company’s organizational structure:
A. are almost always the departments performing such key administrative support functions as finance, accounting, information technology, human resource management, and R&D.

B. can include process departments, traditional functional departments, geographic organizational units, and divisional units performing one or more major processing steps along the value chain (components manufacture, assembly, distribution), and individual businesses (in the case of a diversified company).

C. typically consist of an un-empowered employee department, an empowered employee department, teams of front-line supervisors, teams of middle-level managers and administrators, and the group of top-level executives that comprise the company’s “executive suite.”

D. usually consist of supply chain management, components manufacture, assembly, distribution, and administration.

E. usually consist of two divisions—a division charged with performing primary value chain activities and a division charged with performing support activities.

B. can include process departments, traditional functional departments, geographic organizational units, and divisional units performing one or more major processing steps along the value chain (components manufacture, assembly, distribution), and individual businesses (in the case of a diversified company)
What is the name of a structure that combines two or more organizational forms, with multiple reporting relationships, and that is used to foster cross-unit collaboration?
A. Matrix structure.

B. Composite structure.

C. Combination structure.

D. Project-based, process-based, or team-management common close cross-unit collaboration approaches.

E. All of these.

A. Matrix structure
Which one of the following falsely characterizes a centralized organizational structure?
A. Top-level managers should retain accountability over most strategic and operating decisions and keep a tight rein on business-unit heads, department heads, and the managers of key operating units.

B. Strict enforcement of detailed procedures backed by rigorous managerial oversight is the most reliable way to keep the daily execution of strategy on track.

C. Tight control by the manager in charge makes it easy to fix accountability when things do not go well.

D. Most company personnel have neither the time nor the inclination to direct and properly control the work they are performing and they lack the knowledge and judgment to make wise decisions about how best to do their work.

E. A company that draws on the combined intellectual capital of its people can outperform a company that relies on command-and-control hierarchal structure.

E. A company that draws on the combined intellectual capital of its people can outperform a company that relies on command-and-control hierarchal structure
A disadvantage of the centralized organization is:
A. it lengthens response times by those closest to the market conditions because they must seek approval for their actions.

B. it does not encourage responsibility among lower-level managers and rank-and-file employees.

C. it discourages lower-level managers and rank-and-file employees from exercising any initiative.

D. it diverts authority away from those closest to, and most knowledgeable about, the situation for actions.

E. All of these.

E. All of these
A decentralized organizational structure is predicated on the belief that:
A. decision-making authority should be put in the hands of the people closest to and most familiar with the situation, and these people should be trained to exercise good judgment.

B. a command-and-control organizational scheme is the lowest-cost way to organize the work effort.

C. top-level management oftentimes lacks the expertise and wisdom to decide what is the wisest and best course of action.

D. the best decisions emerge from a collegial, collaborative culture where decisions are made by general consensus (at least a majority vote) on what to do and when.

E. organizing into work teams, having team members elect a team leader, and having team members vote on the best way to do things greatly reduce corporate bureaucracy.

A. decision-making authority should be put in the hands of the people closest to and most familiar with the situation, and these people should be trained to exercise good judgment
The organizing challenge of a decentralized structure which stresses employee empowerment is:
A. how to keep empowered employees from making lots of stupid decisions.

B. establishing a collegial, collaborative culture so that decisions can be made by gaining a quick consensus on what to do and when to do it.

C. how to avoid de-motivating employees (because empowered employees are expected to take responsibility for their actions and decisions).

D. how to exercise control over the actions and decisions of empowered employees so that the business is not put at risk while trying to capture the benefits of empowerment.

E. how to convince lower-level managers and employees that they are empowered.

D. how to exercise control over the actions and decisions of empowered employees so that the business is not put at risk while trying to capture the benefits of empowerment
Building organizational bridges with external allies is aided by:
A. appointing “relationship managers” and giving them responsibility for making particular strategic partnerships or alliances generate the intended benefits.

B. agreeing with allies to meet frequently and make all decisions pertaining to the alliance on the basis of mutual agreement and consensus.

C. getting each strategic ally to agree to appoint someone as head of the collaborative effort and to give that person the authority to enforce tight coordination of joint activities.

D. forming a 50-50 joint venture with each strategic partner, and then assigning people to the joint venture that has the authority and responsibility to enforce tight coordination.

E. entering into a written agreement detailing the roles and responsibilities of the company and the ally/partner, setting forth the results that are expected, establishing deadlines for achieving these results, and designating the people who are to be responsible for making the collaborative effort work successfully.

A. appointing “relationship managers” and giving them responsibility for making particular strategic partnerships or alliances generate the intended benefits
Which one of the following must a company do to match structure to strategy?
A. Choose a basic organizational design and modify it to fit the company’s particular business.

B. Supplement the design structure with coordinating mechanisms.

C. Institute networking and communication arrangements to support strategy execution.

D. Set up “ideal” organizational arrangements despite having to disturb existing relationships or other relevant factors.

E. All of these.

E. All of these

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