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Business Policy and Strategy

Unit II Case Study


The purpose of this exercise is to get you familiar with strategy terms introduced and defined in Chapter 1. Let’s apply these terms to McDonald’s Corporation (stock symbol = MCD).




Step 1: Go to, which is McDonald’s Web site. Click on the word Search. Then type in the words Annual Report. Then print the 2009 McDonald’s Annual Report. This document may be 100 pages, so you may want to print it in your college library or order the report directly from McDonald’s as indicated on the Web site. The Annual Report contains excellent information for developing a list of internal strengths and weaknesses for MCD.


Step 2: Go to the CSU Online Library and make a copy of an industry survey for the restaurant industry from the Business Source Complete or ABI/Inform Complete database. The document you select should contain excellent information for developing a list of external opportunities and threats facing MCD.


Step 3: Go to the Web site. Enter MCD. Note the wealth of information on McDonald’s that may be obtained by clicking any item along the left column. Click on Competitors down the left column. Then print out the resultant tables and information. Note that McDonald’s two major competitors are Yum! Brands, Inc. and Burger King Holdings.


Step 4: Using the Cohesion Case, the information, the 2009 Annual Report, and the Industry Survey document, on a separate sheet of paper list what you consider to be MCD’s three major strengths, three major weaknesses, three major opportunities, and three major threats. Each factor listed for this exercise must include a %, #, $, or ratio to reveal some quantified fact or trend. These factors provide the underlying basis for a strategic plan because a firm strives to take advantage of strengths, improve weaknesses, avoid threats, and capitalize on opportunities.


In addition to completing Steps 1-4, summarize your findings in a two-page APA formatted paper and discuss your views of McDonald’s strategic prospects based upon your analysis of the external assessment and consideration of the opportunities to grow, as well as threats from competitors and the macro environment.

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