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About the course

This is the business endgame: defining strategy and implementing it in a real-world setting.

In Applied Business Strategies, you’ll learn how to bridge the gap between strategy and execution by way of competitive analysis, strategic planning and examining your company’s weaknesses and strengths from multiple perspectives.

As you progress through the course, you’ll acquire a suite of versatile tools that will help you identify, choose and implement business strategies that address individual, functional and organizational goals. You can then fine-tune your business approach using different instruments from this “toolkit” assembled by the experts at Notre Dame. You’ll also master the foundational knowledge required to successfully develop and implement an effective business plan – one that capitalizes on cross-departmental synergies and aligns with organizational goals.

With the right tools, skills and knowledge under your belt, you’ll have everything you need to achieve – and maintain – a competitive advantage.

What You’ll Learn

Business Analysis

  • Proven Techniques for Evaluating Resource Strengths
  • Expert Advice on Gaining and Sustaining a Competitive Advantage
  • Must-Know Methods for Assessing Competitive Strength

Business Strategy

  • Best Practices for Developing, Aligning and Implementing Strategy
  • Essential Elements of a Successful Business Plan
  • Creating the “Perfect Pitch”

Business Ethics

  • Four Cardinal Virtues and Their Role in Effective Business Leadership
  • Critical Importance of Aligning Employee and Organizational Values
  • Beneficial Aspects of Business Ethics

Corporate Social Responsibility

  • Corporate Social Responsibility as a Business Performance Standard
  • Win-Win Outcomes in Stakeholder Management
  • Defining Characteristics of Corporate Citizenship

Economic Value Added

  • Inherent Problems With Accounting Income as a Performance Measure
  • Key Variables Required for Calculation of Economic Value Added (EVA)
  • Top Tips for Using EVA to Evaluate Firm Performance

Three-Circles Model

  • Identifying and Overcoming Three Common Strategic Mistakes
  • Core Elements of Competitive Positioning
  • Primary Drivers of Customer Decision-Making Process
  • Indispensable Tool for Identifying and Growing a Sustainable Competitive Advantage: Three-Circles Model


8 Week Course

Lesson 1 - Business Analysis

  • Introduction to SWOT
  • Resource Strength Categories
  • Evaluating Resource Strengths
  • Gaining and Sustaining a Competitive Advantage
  • Sustainability
  • Firm- and Industry-Level Factors of Competitive Advantage
  • Analyzing the Competition
  • Competitive Strength Assessment: Unweighted
  • Competitive Strength Assessment: Weighted

Lesson 2 - Business Strategy

  • Strategic Planning: Part 1 - 3
  • Strategy Formulation: Part 1 - 3
  • The Strategic Plan: Part 1 - 2
  • Tactics and Implementation: Part 1 - 3
  • The Perfect Pitch: Part 1 - 3

Lesson 3 - Business Ethics

  • Introduction to Business Ethics
  • Ethics of Business: Personal Core Values
  • Four Cardinal Virtues as Pillars of Moral Character
  • Living in Moral Alignment
  • Aligning Employee and Organizational Values
  • Guiding Views of Success
  • Positive Side of Ethics

Lesson 4 - Corporate Social Responsibility

  • Introduction to Corporate Social Responsibility: Part 1
  • Introduction to Corporate Social Responsibility: Part 2
  • Purpose of a Business
  • Stakeholder Management
  • Models of CSR: Part 1
  • Models of CSR: Part 2
  • Comprehensive Models of Corporate Citizenship
  • Strategic CSR

Lesson 5 - Economic Value Added

  • Economic Value Added
  • EVA Variables
  • EVA for Beta Manufacturing
  • Alternate EVA Formats

Lesson 6 - Economic Value Added (continued)

  • The Estimation of EVA Variables
  • The Interpretation of Beta
  • EVA Exercise: Introduction
  • EVA Exercise: Conclusion

Lesson 7 - Three-Circles Model

  • Three Circles: Introduction
  • Strategic Mistakes
  • Competitive Positioning
  • Customers
  • Reasons and Values

Lesson 8 - Three-Circles Model (continued)

  • Three-Circle Model Outside View: Part 1
  • Three-Circle Model Outside View: Part 2
  • Three-Circle Model Outside View: Part 3
  • Three-Circle Model Outside View: Part 4
  • Three-Circle Model Inside View
  • 10 Steps
  • Three-Circle Model: Wrap-Up

Who should attend

The third and final course in Notre Dame’s Executive Certificate in Business Administration program, Applied Business Strategiesis open to anyone charged with increasing organizational efficiency, productivity or profitability. It is especially valuable for functional managers, small business owners, newly appointed executives and other professionals who wish to develop key business skills without the time and expense of traditional campus-based programs.

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