(Analytical Skills) Assume that you have been hired by a local small-business consulting firm. You have been asked by your boss to review a proposal from a client who is considering opening a new Pilates and yoga studio in a trendy part of town. Because you know SWOT analysis, you have been asked to group the following attributes about the proposed business into a SWOT analysis:
- The proposed location is on the same street corner as the main subway line station and three blocks from a ferry terminal that commuters use go to work.
- The proposed location has a vestibule and a new HVAC system.
- The street that the location is situated on has many small shops, restaurants, and bars and is a popular gathering place.
- There are many historic structures that are in need of updates, but some owners are reluctant to invest in these aging structures.
- The area has become gentrified over the past decade, and there is more disposable income than in the past.
- In addition to the young professionals, a large number of 55 and over retirees who are now empty nesters have been moving into the neighborhood.
- With the young professionals and empty nesters, this area has one of the lowest birth rates in the nation.
- The two-year lease is affordable for the business plan, but there is no guarantee of renewal after the term.
- There is a rumor of a spin studio opening two blocks away.
- The building has been updated with ramps and restrooms to accommodate disabled patrons.
- The local paper has interviewed the client and will be running a “Pilates Craze” feature in the upcoming weekend newspaper.
(Interpersonal Skills) Your instructor may assign you to a small group, and you will receive either a “Team A” or “Team B” assignment. Team A groups will need to meet for 15 minutes in a face-to-face setting, while Team B members will meet electronically either by setting up a meeting via Skype or using text messaging on their cell phones. Team A members will need to set up a time and location for their meeting while Team B members will need to share their contact information with a team leader.
Your instructor will assign a company to discuss and report on. Team A will discuss a firm’s internal environment while team B will discuss the firm’s external environment. In class, each team will report its conclusions about its assignment and report on the benefits and challenges that meeting in person or electronically posed.
(Communication) Set up an interview with a manager at a local business who is involved in the strategic planning process at her company. Ask her what type of planning she is involved in (strategic, operational). Discover if she involves the employees who report to her in the planning process and how planning is tied to goal setting. Write a report on your findings. The interview should take no more than 15 minutes.