25.4. Tactical Decisions

Capstone presents a long -term focused scenario. Each iteration of decision -making equals one year in the life of the simulated industry. Most Capstone simulations are organized around five to eight decision rounds, run over the course of a semester or in a brief seminar (Capstone can be delivered in any format—live, online, or blended), representing five to eight years worth of industry competition.

Students use a Capstone spreadsheet, called capstone.xls, to create and analyze decision tactics in each round. Capstone.xls provides the capability to evaluate alternate worst-case/best-case scenarios, to help students optimize planning.

The Strategy menu in the capstone.xls spreadsheet is organized around several primary functional areas:

  • Research and Development (R&D)

  • Marketing

  • Production

  • Finance

Several additional optional modules include:

  • Total Quality Management

  • Human Resources

  • Labor Contract Negotiation

  • Advanced Marketing

Capstone students are presented with a number of potential tactical choices in R&D (Exhibit 25.4). When they assume management of the firm, they have five brands, one positioned in each of the five market segments. As they execute their strategy, they must decide whether to maintain a presence in each market segment, or focus only on certain segments. They might also decide to run multiple brands in a given segment.

Capstone customers ...

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