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MGT-301: Managing Organizations

Library resources available for the Managing Organizations class.

Key Databases

Use these library databases first to get started on your company research.

The Firm's Strategy

The Firm's Strategy

Basic Definitions

  • For some discussion/definitions on the types of corporate strategy, including definitions of focused and unfocused, etc., see this article from the Encyclopedia of Management: "Strategy Levels." See especially #3 under Growth Strategies, where it defines diversification and related/unrelated, AND see the section “PORTER'S GENERIC STRATEGIES” where it discusses Differentiation and the focus strategy. 
  • Also see other articles in the Encyclopedia of Management on Competitive Advantage, Competitive Analysis and Strategic Planning Tools.

Researching the Firm's Strategy

  • You can use the Datamonitor Report, the ReferenceUSA company database and Hoover's to identify diversification and focus-ness.
  • Also search in ABI-Inform for articles. For example, here are over 100 articles discussing various aspects of Google's strategy in the marketplace. Notice the search is on "CO(google) AND SU(strategy)."
  • Utilize the First Research Industry Profiles. 
  • If your company is in the technology arena, such as the computing or wireless industry, please be sure to check out the Faulkner Information Services database. See the company Profile link on the right side of the page.

  • U.S. Public Companies usually succinctly state their Business Strategy in "Item 1. Business" of their Form 10-K, which is the annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. 10-Ks are found at Lexis Nexis, Mergent, EDGAR, Yahoo! Finance and other places. The Business overview in the 10-K provides a detailed discussion of the company's strategy, products and services, operations, marketing, distribution, international business, suppliers and government regulation as well as competitive conditions in the industry.
  • Search the Business & Industry Database. See sample search results for Google and Corporate Strategy

  • Datamonitor Case Studies. If there is a case study for your company, it will provide a concise evaluation of how your company stands out in some area of its strategic operations, highlighting the ways in which the company has become one of the best in its field or how it deals with different problems encountered in that sector.
  • The reference book series "Company Profiles for Students" has a section on Strategy. Though these reports are 5-8 years old, they can still offer some insight on your company's strategy. See the example for Microsoft. These books are located in the Reference Collection on the first floor. Ask at the Reference Desk for assistance.
  • Find historical annual reports in Lexis-Nexis Academic. This could give insight on your company's overall strategy. Many current annual reports are available at the Annual Report Gallery.