You will be evaluated on both content and form. The level of quality of the deliverable should mirror a briefing that you would submit to a C-level officer or an analyst on a key project. In this formal presentation, you should include: 1: The Core Issue 2: Situational Overview and Challenges to Overcome 3 & 4: Data and Results of Analysis 5: Recommendations/Solutions to Core Issue with Rationale Required Appendices: References and credits cited. Notes/Tips We are making decisions as of the time the case was written. Stick to the evidence in the case unless otherwise instructed. Do not spend valuable time doing Internet or library research on the company in a case (unless you have a compelling business reason – please see me about this type of “off book” analysis). The case discussion questions suggest issues and analysis that we will discuss in class, but these are not an exhaustive list of the issues in any case. If you see something relevant that isn’t covered, bring it up! Notes and tips are designed to give you guidance on particular case issues or analysis points where you can quantify evidence, try to do so, making your assumptions and calculations clear. Even approximate numbers can help us understand the magnitude of particular issues in a given business situation. Notes on Case Preparation. Typically, approximately three hours of study are necessary to prepare for a case adequately. Case preparation means the identification of the key problems and issues, analyses (including quantitative and financial calculations) to determine the underlying or root causes of the situation, and the formulation of practicable plans of action with specific steps and timing. There are no right or wrong answers. However, there are good and bad analyses, and some decisions are more defensible than others. What is important is the process of arriving at your own conclusions and recommendations, by marshaling evidence in the case, and applying careful and logical thinking. In preparing for cases prior to class, I suggest the following procedure: • Read the case overview in the assignment and the introduction to the case itself. This usually identifies the key manager(s) (the “protagonist”) in the case, and gives an indication of the protagonist’s situation. • Skim the case. What kind of information does the case contain? What is in the exhibits? This lets you preview where the case is going and what information might be relevant to the protagonist’s situation. • Go back and read the case again thoroughly. Consider the following issues in your reading. • Analysis: What is the situation facing the managers involved? This is the core of the course, and the foundation on which all decisions are made. • Diagnosis: What’s the problem or opportunity here? What in the situation requires action on the part of managers? This can be an opportunity for creativity; the problem that managers suggest may not be the most important problem. • Plan of Action: What are you going to do? • Reality Test: How will you make your plan work? • Case Discussion Participation. Please know that quality of contribution (meaningful insights that help us progress in our discussion of the topic) far outweighs quantity. It’s not about always about “being right” in what you say – very rarely in business is there only one “right” answer. Rather, it is the degree to which you make a responsible effort to facilitate idea flow and advance classroom discussion. In addition, you will need to attentively follow the discussion in class so that your comments will build from what others have said. Clarity and conciseness will be highly valued.