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Instructor's Manual

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rrrrrrrrrrrrrrbb fnf jkfnkwkfnewk jfn j f f f f f fff ffff f f f f f f ff f f er fw f fw f w f w f ew f ew f w f ew f e wf wf fe wf ewf ewef ewf ewf ewf w f wf w f One of the benefits of this case is that almost all students (UK at least) will have heard of Marks & Spencer, and very likely will have personal experiences of it. They may well also have personal views about the reasons for its demise. However, care must be taken that it does not override a reasoned understanding of the background of Marks & Spencer and some of the documented rather than personal evidence to do with the organisation. Nonetheless, the personal experience can be useful in generating discussion in class, and even as data in relation to some of the problems experienced by customers.

It is useful to begin the case discussion by getting students to recognise the huge success of Marks & Spencer for most of its history, and to try and account for that success. This might be done by raising the question of why and how it achieved a position of competitive advantage in relation to other retailers.

The class session can then move on to discuss the reasons for the problems it faced in the late 1990s; what strategy it should follow to overcome these; and finally the attempts to manage change that the management undertook in the 2000s.

5. Questions

1. Why was Marks & Spencer so successful? 2. What was its basis of competitive advantage? 3. Why did Marks & Spencer suffer its downturn in performance in the late 1990s? 4. What competitive strategy should Marks & Spencer seek to follow? 5. Evaluate the change initiatives mounted since the departure of Richard Greenbury.


© Pearson Education Limited 2005

Instructor's Manual

6. Why was Vandevelde init



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