MGMT 330 Week 5 Assignment | Devry University

MGMT 330 Week 5 Assignment | Devry University

Week 5: Case Study—Overblown Proposal

Case Study Instructions

1.    Read and review the Case Study analysis questions listed at the bottom of this page.

2.    Write your response to the analysis questions contained at the end of the case.

3.    Refer to the weekly reading, introduction, and lesson pages for additional information when responding to the case study and analysis questions.

4.    List any references used.

5.    Your submission should be a minimum of two pages, double spaced.

6.    Include the questions in your response.

7.    Submit your response in an MS Word document.

NOTE: Wikipedia and unauthored websites are not acceptable sources. Use of such sites will result in a reduction of points.

Ethics Detective

Solving the Case of the Overblown Proposal

As the manager in charge of your company's New Ventures Group, you've read your share of proposals—hundreds, maybe thousands, of them. You've developed a sixth sense about these documents, an ability to separate cautious optimism from self-doubt and distinguish justified enthusiasm from insupportable hype.

Your company invests in promising smaller firms that could grow into beneficial business partners or even future acquisitions. In a typical scenario, a small company invents a new product but needs additional funding to manufacture and market it, so the owners approach you with funding proposals. Because you make the first major decision in this investment process, your choices and recommendations to the board of directors are crucial.

Moreover, the risks are considerable. If one of your recommendations doesn't pan out, the company could lose all the money it invested (often millions), and that's only the start. Failures consume your team's precious time and energy and can even put the company at risk for shareholder lawsuits and other serious headaches. In other words, mistakes in your line of work are costly.

The proposal in front of you today is intriguing. A small company in Oklahoma has designed a product called the Wireless Shopping List, and you think the idea might appeal to upscale homeowners. Small touchscreens are placed around the house, wherever occupants are likely to think of things they need to buy on the next shopping trip: on the refrigerator door, in the media room, in the nursery, in the garage, in the gardening shed. The system collects all these inputs, and, on command, it prints out a shopping list or downloads it to a smartphone. It's a clever idea, but one paragraph in the proposal bothers you.

Everybody in our test market audience was absolutely stunned when we demonstrated the simulated system. They couldn't believe something like this was even possible. It was so handy and so convenient—everyone said it would change their lives forever. We haven't even specified the price yet, but every single person in the room wanted to place an order on the spot.

Bovée, C. L., & Thill, J. V. (2018). Ethics Detective Solving the Case of the Overblown Proposal, Ch. 14 (p. 405). Business Communication Today (14th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.

Analysis Questions

1.    This proposal potentially oversells the idea in at least three ways. Identify them and explain how they could lead you to decline the investment opportunity at this moment. 

2.    You believe that more research is necessary. Describe what type of analysis would you recommend to determine if this technology could be successful in the future.

3.    How will the information learned to be helpful to you in your personal or professional life?


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