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Data Detective Project: Activities plus Executive Summary The Data Detective project spans four topics and focuses on the ways in which financial data provide clues about a company’s strategy. To build your analytic skills,

Data Detective Project: Activities plus Executive Summary
The Data Detective project spans four topics and focuses on the ways in which financial data provide clues about a company’s strategy. To build your analytic skills, your sleuthing is due on Thursdays in a series of Endeavour activities (if you understand the references, you obviously watch PBS Masterpiece). Your detecting concludes in an executive summary reporting your findings.
We are using the Data Detective simulation (Narayanan & Srinivasan, 2018) as a series of increasingly complex opportunities for you to match companies with their financial data. This will test your abilities to
· Determine which financial metrics reveal typical industry characteristics
· Create and describe the rationales for your decisions based on your knowledge and reasoning.
Please read these instructions in their entirety before beginning this project.
Guidelines
Preparation
1. Review the Data Detective materials in D2L
2. Technical requirements:
· Operating systems supported: Windows, OS X, iOS, and Android
· Browsers supported: Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge
· Mobile devices: Tablets and iPads; screen resolution must be at least 1024 pixels
· Check your device’s compatibility here http:
forio.com/hbp-support/#check/simulations/datadetective
3. Register for Data Detective using the course pack link provided by your instructor.
4. Carefully review the introductory materials within the simulation.
· You will not be able to play the simulation until everyone in the class has registered
Simulation Rules
1. Everything you need to succeed in the simulation is provided within the simulation itself.
2. The simulation takes about 20 minutes to run for each practice session. It will take longer for the final analytic session.
· The instructor will provide feedback based on the way the class decides to use the simulation.
3. You are encouraged but not required to exchange ideas within your Community of Practice.
4. Use the team OneNote notebook to keep notes that you might want to use to track your progress.
Engagement Rules
1. Tech support is available 24/7
· You’ll find a Help chat box hovering in the lower left corner of the Harvard Business School Publishing platform
· https:
hbsp.harvard.edu/contact-us
Program and Assessment Linkages
    Programmatic Goals Assessed
    MBA6800 Learning and Project Objectives
    MBA1 Solve organizational challenges in an uncertain, interdependent world by selecting and integrating business concepts.
Focus areas
· Finance 1, 2, 3
· Applied Economics 2
· Accounting 1
    CLO1: Suggest ethical, interdependent strategic alternatives to organizational challenges by integrating a range of business constructs
· Prepare to analyze strategic company indicators using financial data (CLO1)
· Identify strategic company indicators (CLO1)
· Identify strategic industry indicators (CLO1)
· Contrast strategic theories focused inside firms with those focused on outside circumstances and forces (CLO1)
· Explain how financial statements and ratios suggest how businesses operate (CLO1)
Assessed Components
Endeavour simulation activities: 10 points
Executive summary: 40 points
Total project: 50 points
Endeavour activities due on Thursdays—performance assessed in the main project ru
ic
1. Endeavour 1: Log into the simulation and be sure to explore all introductory materials (1 point on-time access)
2. Endeavour 2: Sleuth financials of three well-known US companies (1 point on-time choices and 1 point comments)
3. Endeavour 3: Sleuth financials of three disguised US companies (1 point on-time choices and 1 point comments)
4. Endeavour 4: Sleuth financials to determine which is not US (1 point—on-time choices and 1 point comments)
5. Endeavour 5: Sleuth financials of 5 companies to determine industries (1 point on-time choices and 2 points comments plus 1 point each co
ect answer)
The first four Endeavour activities will be followed by class de
iefings. The fifth Endeavour activity forms the basis for your graded executive summary. In each Endeavour activity, you will provide three responses within the simulation: Selection, Rationale, and Confidence level. It is important to provide all three responses so that meaningful feedback can be provided to you and to the entire class.
Executive summary    
Imagine that you are competing for an important, new, strategy analyst position in your firm. Your boss has asked for a strategic position paper that includes your ideas about five companies and their industries, so you really want to present something impressive. Your boss talks endlessly about the ideas of Michael Porter and has expressed deep concern about emerging global trends. Luckily, you have at your fingertips your research about the five companies (aka Endeavour 5) and this reading list:
· Carter, C., Clegg, S. R., & Kornberger, M XXXXXXXXXXA very short, fairly interesting and reasonably cheap book about studying strategy. Sage.
· National Intelligence Council XXXXXXXXXXGlobal trends 2040: A more contested world (NIC XXXXXXXXXXOffice of the Director of National Intelligence. https:
www.dni.gov/files/ODNI/documents/assessments/GlobalTrends_2040.pdf
· Porter, M. E XXXXXXXXXXWhat is strategy? Harvard Business Review, 74(6), 61-78.
· Porter, M. E XXXXXXXXXXThe five competitive forces that shape strategy. Harvard Business Review, 86(1), 78-93
You only need to find two more cu
ent (no more than 2 years old) Harvard Business Review articles (that means you will have a minimum total of 6 references), and you will be ready to draft a crisp executive summary that will grab the boss’s attention.
· Contrast strategic theories focused inside and outside the firm as described by Carter et al XXXXXXXXXXInclude Porter's (1996; 2008) concepts in your analysis and critique.
· Assess strategic implication of companies’ financial statements and how they can help your company by using the five examples you’ve just researched.
· Illuminate emerging trends in economics and the environment (National Intelligence Council, 2021) that modify your ideas about strategic theories and approaches to strategic analysis.
In your executive summary, you must support the answers to the questions and your analysis with evidence from the literature and the simulation. In addition to referencing the simulation, you must cite and reference the sources in the reading list as well as at least two additional, cu
ent Harvard Business Review articles from your independent research (not otherwise assigned in the course). The citations and references should follow the APA 7th edition format. Late papers will not be accepted unless you obtain prior approval from the instructor. This is a Turnitin™ assignment.
When crafting your document remember to include:
1. Title page with your name, date, and MBA concentration (1 page)
2. Body—the executive summary part—double-spaced—using APA formatting and in-text citations (2-4 pages)
a. Introduction and thesis statement
. Strategy critique
c. Assess strategic implications with examples
i. Use of accounting concepts
ii. Use of financial concepts
d. Trends, including economic and environmental trends
e. Forward looking conclusion
3. Reference page (usually 1 page). You must use APA in-text citations and references.
Data Detective Ru
ic
    Element
    Advanced
100%
    Proficient
85%
    Basic
75%
    Developing
65%
    Unsatisfactory
0%
    Endeavour on time 5%
    All five on time
    Four of five on time
    Three of five on time
    One or two on time
    None on time
    Endeavour rationale
5%
    Clear rationale on four rounds
    Clear rationale on three rounds
    Clear rationale on two rounds
    Clear rationale on one round
    No rationales or unclear rationales
    MBA1a/FIN 1 Problem solving
Endeavour 5
5%
    All five co
ect
    Three or four co
ect
    Two co
ect
    One co
ect
    None co
ect
    Introduction and framework
5%
    Thoroughly describes criteria for analysis. Systematic development of ideas/arguments; consistently logical organization; clear thesis statement
    Adequately describes criteria for analysis. Usually systematic development of ideas/ arguments; occasional lapses of logic; clear thesis statement
    Briefly describes criteria for analysis. Inconsistent in organization and development of ideas; clear thesis statement; lack of clear transitions
    Inadequately describes criteria for analysis. Frequent absence of logical flow/ development of ideas/arguments; vague thesis statement
    Fails to describe. Information disorganized and/or incoherent; no thesis statement
    MBA1
FIN3
Critical thinking
Strategy critique
15%
    Accurately and incisively critiques strategic positions inside and outside the firm. Main points and objectives are emphasized and synthesized
    Accurately critiques inside and outside the firm. Important points and main objectives are emphasized and somewhat synthesized
    Summarizes rather than critiques strategy inside and outside the firm. Some points are emphasized, but there is little synthesis or critique
    The critique is weak but appears earnest
    The critique is sloppy and too poorly crafted to follow
    MBA1c/FIN2/ACC1
Financial accounting information significance
10%
    Discusses financial accounting information significance aspects in depth
    Shows modest understanding of information significance
    Writes about information significance but is not insightful
    Cursory connection to information significance
    Fails to address
    MBA1d/Econ 2
Economic and environmental trends
10%
    Clearly, accurately, and fully analyzes economic and environmental trends.
    Fully and accurately analyzes trends
    Basic description of trends. May reflect minor misconceptions
    Partially or simplistically describes. May contain substantive e
ors
    Insufficiently describes or inaccurately analyzes
    Conclusions
10%
    Discusses conclusions and recommendations in depth
    Shows modest understanding of conclusions and recommendations
    Writes about recommendations, but is not insightful
    Cursory statement of recommendations
    Fails to describe recommendations
    Consistency
10%
    Arguments are consistent and logically developed throughout
    Arguments are mostly consistent and logically developed throughout
    Arguments are mostly consistent and logical
    Arguments are not consistent and may not be logically structured.
    Inconsistent or illogical
    Mechanics
10%
    Grammatically co
ect and fluid. Well-written without spelling or typographical e
ors. All language in keeping with educated usage
    Grammatically co
ect and well-written with few, minor spelling or typographical e
ors. Language in keeping with educated usage
    Written with few, minor grammar, spelling, or typographical e
ors. Language in keeping with educated usage
    E
ors in grammar, spelling, or language use detract from the product
    Egregious e
ors in grammar, spelling, or language use. Work may be sloppy in the extreme
    Scholarship
10%
    Thoroughly integrates and cites theory from course and supplementary materials. All topics are synthesized, and critically analyzed
    Adequately integrates and cites theory from course and supplementary materials. Topics are analyzed
    Missing substantial integration and citation of theory from course materials. Some analysis, but mostly summary
    Little or no integration or citation of theory from course materials
    No substantive scholarship, little analysis, citations missing or unacceptable
    APA
5%
    APA format co
ectly applied to overall paper, citations, and references (very few and very minor e
ors)
    APA format applied to overall paper, citations, and references (any e
ors are small and not serious)
    APA format inco
ectly or not applied to overall paper, citations, and references (missing citations or missing references may cause further reduction in the grade)
    Some attempt at format other than APA, but full of e
ors
    Citation and reference format not appropriate or missing

References
Carter, C., Clegg, S. R., & Kornberger, M XXXXXXXXXXA very short, fairly interesting and reasonably cheap book about studying strategy. Sage.
Narayanan, V. G., & Srinivasan, S. (2018, June 21). Financial analysis simulation: Data detective [Web-based simulation]. Harvard Business Publishing. https:
hbsp.harvard.edu/product/8742-HTM-ENG
National Intelligence Council XXXXXXXXXXGlobal trends 2040: A more contested world (NIC XXXXXXXXXXOffice of the Director of National Intelligence. https:
www.dni.gov/files/ODNI/documents/assessments/GlobalTrends_2040.pdf
Porter, M. E XXXXXXXXXXWhat is strategy? Harvard Business Review, 74(6), 61-78.
Porter, M. E XXXXXXXXXXThe five competitive forces that shape strategy. Harvard Business Review, 86(1), 78-93
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