systems thinking

This TMA is intended to assess the following:

· Your knowledge and understanding of the key concepts covered in Block 1 (weeks1-10)

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· Your ability to apply the course ideas to real business examples

· Your ability to use academic business and management language appropriately and effectively to communicate your ideas

· Your ability to work and communicate with a team

This is a group TMA. Each team will consist of 3-4 students. (Consult with your tutor if it’s not possible to form a group due to the current health situation).

This TMA consists of 20% of your total course grade.

· Teams of the same section should select different ideas for this TMA.

· The initial task of your team is to select an innovative organization and ask for tutor approval.

· Teams should arrange with their tutors to verify that no other team had selected the same organization.





II. TMA Topic and requirements


Innovation is a crucial element for economic and organizational success. If a company wants to compete it must be both adaptive and creative. The focus of this TMA is to select an example (preferably a local example) of organizational innovation associated with its business functions- marketing and/or operations management- and analyze the importance of this innovation. This TMA is not about innovative products, but rather innovative processes and methods that organizations implement through their business functions (marketing or operations) to gain competitive advantage such as finding new suppliers, creating new production methods, creating a new advertising strategy, etc…

It is crucial that students use theories and course material they leaned in B207A while writing this TMA.

III. Essay Paper (100 marks out of 100) (1500 words)


Your answer should be in the form of an essay. The essay should be well organized, that is, it has an introduction (5 marks), body (90 marks) and conclusion (5 marks). The introduction should introduce the topic.

In the body paragraphs, the following points should be discussed:

1. Name the organization and briefly describe its products, markets and activities. (10 marks)

2. How was the organization able to become innovative? Link to the theories discussed in the course material. (20 marks)

3. Discuss how the two business functions (marketing and operations) would identify and address this organization’s innovation needs. Link to the theories discussed in the course material. (20 marks)

4. Discuss the selected process innovation (marketing and/or operations). Which problem did it solve? Which added value did it bring? Link to the theories discussed in the course material. (20 marks)

5. Analyze how the process innovation was implemented and its benefits. (10 marks)

6. Discuss the past or future challenges faced by the organization for innovation implementation. (10 marks)

Instructions for students:

· Each team will work on the paper as they would normally do with other courses, but this time in a group. This is a good opportunity for students to learn a set of skills that are very important in the professional business world, such as time management, planning, communicating with others, etc.

· Each team is required to select a team leader. The TMA paper should be uploaded to the LMS by the team leader only. This is a very important requirement in order to avoid Turnitin similarities.

· The names of all the team members should be written on the pt3 form, including the name of the team leader. All team members will receive the same mark on the TMA essay paper. Students are required to use the pt3 form provided on the LMS for this specific TMA.

· Students papers are expected to meet the following criteria:

o Plagiarism: It’s imperative that team members write the TMA using their own words. Plagiarism will be penalized depending on its severity and according to AOU plagiarism policy.

o Format: team members are expected to write their answer in an essay format: introduction, body paragraph(s) and a conclusion. Failing to do so could result in the deduction of up to 4 marks from the total TMA paper mark.

o Word count: TMAs are expected to be within the specified word count. A 10% deviation from word count limit is acceptable. Not adhering to specified word count could result in the deduction of up to 4 marks of the total TMA paper mark.

o Referencing: team members are expected to use the Harvard referencing style for in-text referencing and list of reference at the end. Failing to do so could result in the deduction of up to 4 marks of the total TMA paper mark.

o E-Library: team members are expected to use E-library sources to support their answers. A minimum of 3 sources is required. Failing to do so could result in the deduction of up to 4 marks of the total TMA paper mark.

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