Discuss trends significant to the industry and company and discuss key areas of uncertainty related to trends or events that potentially could impact the company’s strategy.

Assignment 1:  External Environment Analysis (Week 3)

Purpose:  This assignment is the first of three assignments.  Students will use the tools and apply concepts learned in this and previous business courses to demonstrate an understanding of how organizations develop and manage strategies to establish, safeguard and sustain its position in a competitive market.

Monitoring competitors’ performance is a key aspect of performing an external environment analysis.  This assignment provides students the opportunity to evaluate the competitive position of one of the organizations listed below and integrate that information in an External Factor Evaluation (EFE) matrix and Competitive Profile Matrices (CPM).

Students will present a PowerPoint presentation that meets the standards of an effective presentation.  Learn about creating an effective PowerPoint presentation at:

Ten Tips for Effective PowerPoint Presentations



Students will perform an external analysis on an industry where a company from the list below operates and competes. Alternative companies/industries may be studied but only with the instructor’s prior approval.

  1. Cross
  • Fitbit
  • Citrix
  • Riverbed Technology
  • Darden Restaurants

The paper should focus on factors related to the company’s industry and the environment that it and its competitors make. The factors to measure are those identified in SWOT, 5 Forces, PESTEL, EFE, and CPM.

In completing the assignment, students will perform research on the selected company, its industry, and its competitors and respond to the required steps below:

Step 1:  Create a PowerPoint Presentation.  The final product will be no longer than 20 slides  including the title page and reference page.  Students will use the note section of the PowerPoint to discuss, explain and support the reasoning for information presented in each slide.

Step 2:  Review assignment grading rubric.

Step 3:  In completing the assignment, students are required to support the reasoning using in-text citations and a reference list.  If information is taken from a source document, it has to be cited and referenced.  Both in-text citations and an associated reference list are required.  View the sample APA paper under Week 1 content.  Students may also look under Course Resources>>Student Toolbox for APA resources.

Step 4: Complete an External Environmental Analysis:

Use tools, concepts and information from your own research to perform an external analysis of the company’s environment.  Include the following:

  • Company overview
  • Industry analysis

2)   Competitive analysis.  [Use the company’s closest competitors plus the selected company.]

3)   Techniques Analysis:  PESTEL, Five Forces, OT from SWOT, EFE, and CPM.

  • Trends: Discuss trends significant to the industry and company and discuss key areas of uncertainty related to trends or events that potentially could impact the company’s strategy.
  • Utilize the Notes section to support each slide

Step 5:  Using the grading rubric, ensure all required elements are presented in the presentation.

Step 6: Proofread for organization, spelling, and grammar and completeness.

  • Use the spell and grammar check in MS Word as a first measure;
  • Have someone who has excellent English skills to proof the paper;

Step 7:  Submit the presentation in the Assignment Folder.



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