A Strategic Analysis of BUS477 – Strategic Management

“Capping” is a course that all seniors take, which is a final project that encompasses student’s education in their time at Marist. This week we are highlighting 5 Marist seniors about their stories and experiences with capping. Read on to learn about Lizzy’s experience with Business capping!

When looking back on my capping experience it only seems fitting to break this reflection down exactly how the actual assignment is structured in order for other people to get a taste of what business major’s experience during BUS477. There are two components to business capping: an individual strategic analysis on a company and a group strategic analysis on a competitor of that company. For my individual analysis I did The BMW Group and for my presentation I did Tesla Motors. The paper is anywhere between 17,000-20,000 words and the presentation is 45 minutes with an additional 30 minutes of Q&A after you finish presenting. I am going to take you through an External Analysis of the opportunities and threats of capping, an Internal Analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of capping, and A Strategic Recommendation to future business students in order to get the entire picture of how I spent my semester.

bmw_logo_2When I think of the external analysis of my semester spent capping I think of the beginning thoughts that created initial opportunities and threats to my success. When I first started, I looked at this course as an opportunity to expand my horizons, complete the most difficult academic task presented to me throughout my degree, and come out with an impressive addition to my portfolio to share with future employers and or others close to my life. However, in all reality, as the semester progressed I realized that I was presented with many more threats then I initially thought. The threat of not completing all of the work in front of me on time was always pressing. Every. Single. Second. Also, the threat that my peers would out accomplish me (yes, I am too competitive for my own good) or that I would fall below average was always apparent. And perhaps the most gut wrenching threat of them all: What if I let myself down? Between the mixture of threats from this course alone plus the personal struggles and triumphs I faced this semester, I felt intimidated and challenged and determined at the same time.

The internal analysis of business capping is a little bit different. This is where the strengths and weaknesses of not Tesla-Motors-logo-3only you but your group mates and peers are tested. It is comprised of the group dynamics of your team mates, the strength you find to stay up later and wake up earlier than you ever have, and the relationships and support system that help you to the finish line. Anyone in college knows that group projects are always the hardest and this one is no exception. Coordinating schedules and personality clashes often seem like a weakness in your capping journey, however, the multiple perspectives that combine and the bond you have at the end with your team mates is one of the greatest strengths of all. I will never forget the feeling when we looked at each other and knew we had finally finished. Also, the most incredible strength that I always knew I had but now officially will appreciate forever is my support system. My parents, friends, co-workers, and professors were all cheering for me, for all of us, and knew we could reach our highest potential of success before we even knew what that was.


The best thing I did for myself this semester is I set up my mentality at the beginning (along with the help of the most brilliant and crazy woman I have ever encountered, which is my professor, Dr. Rothberg) and this is where my strategic recommendation to future students comes in. I looked at this obstacle as an obligation, not a choice, and all of a sudden the opportunities outweighed the threats and the strengths outweighed the weaknesses. I knew I could do it. It was going to be painful but I could do it and so can you. I have learned more about business, management, marketing, finance, human resources, and culture in the past four years than I could have ever imagined and yes I will be able to apply this knowledge to the “real world”. However, the most fulfilling thing I have received from all of this, especially capping, is what I learned about myself and THAT is something that will surface in every aspect I ever face for the rest of my life. The feeling at the end will be worth all of the pain and saying that you have accomplished this monstrosity of a class will justify all the tears, sweat, and blood that went into it. Looking back on it, I would do it all again just for this feeling and I will definitely never be the same because of it.

“Always remember: believe in yourself and all that you are. There is something inside of you that is greater than any obstacle.” – Christian D. Larson

Lizzy Newman

Class of 2013

One thought on “A Strategic Analysis of BUS477 – Strategic Management

  1. Hi Marist,
    Glad to read about your capping experience.I am also doing a paper on Tesla and wanted to see if you can share some of your key learning points on TESLA motors regarding their Strategic Management

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