MBA Study Guide

Dear MBA Student:

This STUDY GUIDE is provided for you from the graduate faculty of the School of Business and Industry (SBI). The purpose of this GUIDE is to assist you in preparing for your oral examination that you will take once you have completed all of your MBA course work. You must apply to take your oral examination no later than the beginning of the semester in which you plan to take the exam (be sure you check the calendar in order to determine application deadlines), which can be no sooner than your last semester of coursework. Application forms are available in the Graduate Studies office located on the third floor of Bibb Graves Hall or online. The completed application form, which also serves as the Application for Degree, should be returned to that office.

Questions from members of the graduate faculty of the SBI are included in this volume. The questions are grouped by discipline and are presented by specific courses. Please understand that this GUIDE is not intended to be comprehensive; i. e., you may be asked questions that are not included herein and questions may be asked for any courses that you have had in your program, regardless of the composition of your committee. The purpose for providing you with this set of questions is to assist in better structuring your review for the oral examination.

Even though this GUIDE is provided, you should discuss your examination with the members of your oral committee. You will receive a letter indicating who these individuals are before midterm of the semester in which you plan to take your oral exam. In the letter, you will be instructed to contact the chairperson of your committee in order to establish a date and time for your oral examination. 

If I can be of further assistance to you, please do not hesitate to give me a call.  You can reach me at either (256) 782-5780 or (256) 782-5778.


Louise J. Clark, Ph.D.

MBA Director.



  1. Communication is the key to success for corporations. Describe some differences in communication styles and which appear to be more effective.
  2. Discuss gender differences in communication and why it is important to be aware of them.
  3. Discuss your research project and the research conducted.
  4. Discuss how you would improve communication laterally in an organization, i.e. among supervisors or managers of equal rank who depend on one another for successful task completion. 
  5. Discuss effective communication with telecommuting employees. Approximately 1/6 of employees today telecommute. A major problem with telecommuting is communication. How would you communicate? Give a detailed answer as you discuss telecommuting, including its advantages and disadvantages.
  6. Discuss the importance of understanding nonverbal communication.
  7. Discuss the basic principles of questionnaire design.
  8. What is a double barreled question?
  9. What does it mean to design response options as mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive?
  10. What are some of the basic guidelines for presentation development?
  11. What are the basic goals when opening a presentation?
  12. Discuss some of the basic elements of HTML code.
  13. Discuss some of the basic elements of web design.


  1. Discuss those factors that would lead a manager to consider statistical quality control techniques (sampling) EX: time, cost, safety, infeasibility, etc.
  2. Discuss the relationship between product design and process strategy.
  3. Does (JIT) Just-In-Time inventory management mean that inventory is eliminated? EX:  NO- shift inventory to supplier.
  4. Does JIT influence product design? - EX: Yes, the product must be more standardized with consistent demand.
  5. Contrast Internal vs. External failure cost as they relate to quality. - EX: Internal is found before delivery; i.e. material defect and rework.  External is found after delivery; i.e. warranty and recall cost.
  6. Discuss those decisions made by managers as they link quality-value-price.
  7. Discuss the most often used quality control tools. - EX: Flowcharts, checksheets, histograms, pareto, cause effect, scatter, control chart.
  8. Discuss the decision tools needed for successful project planning. 
  9. In Linear Programming, what is the economic interpretation of the 'shadow price' in the output summary? EX: The value, in terms of the objective, for each unit change in a constraint.
  10. Discuss the components and use of MRP planning.
  11. What considerations would most often influence the choice of manufacturing methods? EX: Volume, product complexity, size, skill level req., equipment needs.
  12. Explain the use of Regression Analysis in forecasting including both input considerations and output review for decision making. EX: Dependent variable, independent, cases, correlation coefficient, etc.
  13. Outline the steps and options for the successful use of simulation modeling.


  1. Select a multinational company. Define the two most important criteria for success in their industry. Plot each industry competitor on an L grid, using the two criteria as its basis. Does your company have a sustainable competitive advantage? Defend your answer.
  2. Discuss corporate governance mechanisms. Are they effective?
  3. Why is industry analysis important to strategic business analysis? In addition to its importance, what pitfalls may stem from relying on industry analysis as the principal tool of strategic analysis?
  4. From a strategic “resource-based” perspective, firms should develop and sustain a valuable bundle of resources and capabilities. Discuss the factors and conditions that make resources and capabilities valuable. What actions can firms take to protect their resources and capabilities and therefore sustain competitive advantage?
  5. The BCG Matrix is a portfolio analysis tool. Discuss why a firm would want products/SBU’s in each cell in the matrix.
  6. Assume you are the CEO of Federal Express. Explain how each of Porter’s Five Forces affect your business.
  7. Identify a company that you are aware of that uses a differentiation strategy. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of that strategy.
  8. Fully explain the difference between traditional stock options and restricted stock. Which better rewards overall company performance? Why?
  9. Identify a company that you are aware of that uses a cost leadership strategy. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of that strategy.
  10. “Shareholders are the most important stakeholders in any organization.” Take a stand in defense of or in disagreement with this statement.
  11. Pick an industry of your choosing. Clearly define the strategic groups and the players involved. Why did you define them as you did? Is it relatively easy to change groups in this industry?


  1. Discuss foreign investment and how it affects a country’s economy. Where is FDI mostly found? Does international trade or international investment come first?
  2. Discuss barriers to trade. How are they connected to the political and legal environment?
  3. Discuss expatriate relocation. Who is available for such positions today? What should a company do about females in these positions? How does the foreign environment affect the expatriate decisions?
  4. Discuss the legal and political forces that face an international business.
  5.  Discuss the impact of culture on business.
  6. Know the five dimensions of Hofstede’s research. Be able to give examples of how they impact international business. See questions under international management.
  7. Discuss Alabama and international trade. How effective is Alabama in trade? Who are our major trading partners?
  8. Discuss organizational support in expatriate assignments. What do companies offer and what should companies offer?
  9. What are the most important facets of international marketing.
  10. If a company outsources any aspects of its business, what effects if any would this potentially have on its domestic operations?
  11. Along with increase in international trade comes an increase in technology transfer.  What long-term impact will this have on the US economy and more importantly on its security and sovereignty? 
  12. Discuss personnel outsourcing to other countries. Why have so many jobs been outsourced? What do you think this will do to the US workforce? With the jobs of knowledge workers being outsourced, do you think that US companies could lose their competitive advantage? Do you think that outsourcing will lead to a loss of the institutional fabric that holds a company together?
  13. Discuss the food and water crisis in the developing world. Privatization of the water sector provides hope for many developing countries. The food crisis affects almost the same number of people on earth as the water crisis, and is equally devastating.  What kind of social responsibility does a multi-national corporation have?
  14. The protection and recognition of intellectual property rights (IPR) is a prominent issue when conducting business in China. How can companies protect themselves against IPR infringement? What kind of strategy would help? How should a company navigate China’s ever evolving bureaucratic and judicial structure in order to successfully protect its IP? Define the situation and give some possible solutions.
  15. The World Bank and the IMF funding in Africa has been at the forefront of controversy since their inception in 1944. How has the funding of these institutions affected the growth in Africa as well as its effect on poverty?  The World Bank and the IMF funding has come under-fire and success may be out of reach in Africa unless major restructuring of these monetary institutions occur. Discuss issues related to IMF and/or World Bank funding in Africa. Be specific and give examples of what is happening now in the dealings of the IMF and World Bank. If you have an opinion about these institutions, you may include that.
  16. Medical care has always been a significant issue for countries for all citizens. A new alternative, medical tourism or medical outsourcing, is being considered as an answer or alternative to the world’s medical woes. Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of medical tourism. Discuss the size and scope of medical tourism, which countries offer it, and who are the customers. By the way, many feel that our new health care system will forces thousands into using medical outsourcing.
  17. For businesses and governments in many countries, corruption is a way of life, taking many forms. Discuss what you believe are the most important points.
  18. Discuss what a market assessment and analysis would involve. What are the various aspects of it?
  19. Tell me how culture influences the practice of international business. Tell me something about Hofstede’s dimensions of culture.
  20. How would a local company, such as Bear Cutlery, on the Alexandria-Jacksonville highway, enter the foreign market? What would be the advantages and disadvantages of exporting and foreign direct investment?
  21. How does religion impact international business?
  22. Discuss the financial crises in the EU. Compare Greece, Ireland, Spain, and Portugal. How did they come to the place they are now? Suggest solutions. How likely is it that positive change comes to any of these countries. How receptive do you think the German citizens are to Germany rescuing these countries? Why is Germany taking that responsibility?
  23. Which Africa nation do you believe to be the best place for foreign direct investment?
  24. Discuss Alabama and trade with Cuba.
  25. Discuss how agricultural subsidies in developed countries hurt developing countries and their entrance into international business.


ACC 512 – Accounting Information Analysis

  1. Distinguish between product costs and period costs and give some examples.
  2. Describe the flow of product costs through the financial statements.
  3. Describe the three inventory accounts for a manufacturing company.
  4. Distinguish between fixed and variable costs and give some examples.  Be sure to discuss per unit and total behavior
  5. What types of environments use job-order and process costing?  How do these systems differ?
  6. What is a contribution margin and what two things does it contribute toward?
  7. How do you calculate a manufacturing overhead rate?  What is the purpose of an overhead rate?  Why are overhead rates annualized?
  8. Calculate the unit sales needed to reach the target profit?
        Unit selling price   $60
        Unit variable costs   50
        Target profit   20,000
        Total fixed costs   10,000

    How about the breakeven point?

  9. Describe the concept of operating leverage.
  10. What is the difference between full or absorption costing and variable costing?  What about income differences between the two approaches?
  11. What is the difference between a traditional and contribution margin format income statement?
  12. Describe activity-based costing and when it is appropriate.
  13. Describe variances for materials or labor.  Provide an example of how material and labor variances could be related.
  14. What is a master budget?  How does it begin and end?
  15. How is a net present value calculated?  How do you determine when it is acceptable?
  16. What is the difference between an IRR and discount rate?
  17. Describe a weighted-average cost of capital.
  18. What causes a fixed manufacturing overhead volume variance?  Is a favorable one necessarily good?
  19. What is the accounting equation?
  20. Name the four basic financial statements.  Also describe the basic layout of the balance sheet and income statement.
  21. What is the difference between the cash and the accrual basis of accounting?
  22. What is a common or joint cost?
  23. What is a split-off point?  How does a manager decide how to see products at the split-off point or process further?


  1. What is the primary purpose of the audit function?
  2. Explain how an evaluation of internal controls can influence substantive testing.
  3. How has Sarbanes-Oxley affected the audit process?
  4. What alternatives are available to an auditor when the amount of misstatement in an account balance is greater than tolerable misstatement?
  5. An auditor is performing a sales cutoff tests and finds a transaction with the following characteristics during the audit of a 2008 calendar year company:
    1. Invoice date is 12/30/2008
    2. Posted to sales on 12/31/2008
    3. Bill of lading date is 1/2/2009

    Explain whether the client has handled this transaction correctly.

  6. Assume that an auditor is testing the completeness of accounts payable.  Would the auditor:
    1. Pull the sample from the accounts payable subsidiary ledger and vouch back to the invoice and supporting documentation.
    2. Pull the sample from the invoices and trace to the accounts payable subsidiary ledger.
  7. Describe the three categories of deficiencies in internal control.
  8. Describe the reporting requirements for the annual audit of a public company including the types of potential opinions.
  9. Distinguish between the level of service for a compilation, review, and audit of historical financial statements.
  10. Describe the use of test data in a financial statement audit.
  11. What are the components of the fraud triangle?



  1. Discuss the revenue recognition and the matching principles as they relate to the preparation of the financial statements.
  2. Discuss the relationship between historical cost and market value in recording assets on the balance sheet. What is the relationship between the two on the day an asset is acquired?
  3. If the objective of financial reporting is to provide useful information to decision makers (investors and creditors), why does the Financial Accounting Standards Board allow different methods of accounting for inventory, depreciation, etc.?
  4. As more businesses operate in foreign environments, discuss the impact of a strengthening dollar on the operating results of the foreign operations.


  1. In a manufacturing environment, what are the primary criteria to be used in assigning a cost driver for allocating overhead? What are the potential consequences of using the “wrong” cost driver?
  2. Which of the major manufacturing costs (materials, labor, overhead) is declining as a percentage of total product cost? Why?
  3. Discuss the benefits of activity based costing as opposed to job order costing or process costing.
  4. Many firms are now moving the operations outside the United States. Discuss reasons why firms choose to operate in foreign countries.


  1. What is the primary purpose of the federal income tax? Who passes the federal tax laws?
  2. Discuss examples where Congress uses tax laws in an attempt to manage the economy and to influence the behavior of citizens.
  3. Discuss key differences in the taxation of individuals (sole proprietorships) versus corporations.
  4. Discuss differences in the deductions allowed for personal expenditures as opposed to business expenditures.



  1. What is marginal analysis? Give an example of a situation where marginal analysis would be useful and explain how you would use it to make a decision in that situation.
  2. What is the difference between constrained and unconstrained optimization? Give an example of each type.
  3. Suppose that the price elasticity of demand for cigarettes is .5. Assume that our goal is to reduce smoking by 25% by the year 2000 by imposing taxes on cigarettes. Assuming everything stays constant, by how much will price have to increase in order to reduce smoking by 25%?
  4. Why is the demand curve usually negatively sloped? Explain the two effects that lead to the negative slope.
  5. Distinguish between a change in demand and a change in quantity demanded.
  6. In terms of revenues raised, is it better to tax a product with elastic or inelastic demand? Why?
  7. What does cross elasticity tell you?
  8. Because of the American love affair with driving the automobile, increases in the price of gasoline will not affect consumption.” What type of demand curve is implied by this statement? Do you believe this is true? Why?
  9. Suppose that we can buy a machine to make paper clips for $2000. It will last 10 years and we will make $500 profit per year from selling the paper clips that we make. How would we use net present value to decide whether or not to buy the machine? Assume that the interest rate for borrowing and lending is 12%.
  10. What is the difference between economic and accounting profit? Use an example to explain.
  11. In some industries, such as the petroleum industry, producers justify their reluctance to lower prices by arguing that the demand for their products is inelastic. Explain.
  12. Suppose that research shows that the elasticity of demand for doctors’ services is 0.6; foreign travel, 4.0; and 1.2 for televisions. Use the determinants of elasticity to explain these figures.
  13. Discuss demand
    • How can demand for a product be estimated?
    • What factors affect it?
  14. Discuss the law of diminishing returns.
  15. Discuss economies of scale.
    • How much output maximizes profits?
    • Market Structures:
    • Which is the most efficient? Why?
    • Why are monopolies thought to be so bad?
    • Barriers to entry;
    • Which structures have them?
    • Name some
    • Explain how they prevent normal profits.
    • A monopoly produces _____ output and charges a _______ price than a firm in pure competition.
  16. Discuss collusion, advertising (when it is useful), positive profits.
    • Which structure is most common?
    • Give examples of each market structure.
  17. Which types of firms have at least some control over the prices they charge?
  18. How do firms decide on their profit-maximizing level of output?
  19. How will you use economics in everyday life?
  20. Be able to graph supply and demand and analyze.
  21. Discuss maximization and minimization. Know the steps.
  22. What is the law of diminishing marginal returns?
  23. Distinguish between fixed and variable costs.
  24. Discuss the role of government in a market economy. Include patents, pollution control, public goods.
  25. Name reasons why profits exist.
  26. Suppose JSU raises its tuition by 35% and revenues fall by 5%. Was this a sound decision and is demand price elastic?
  27. Name a good with a large elasticity and explain why.
  28. Why does the government allow some monopolies to exist? How does it protect the consumer?
  29. If the supply of turkeys turned out to be unusually small this Thanksgiving - would you expect a shortage? Why or why not?
  30. Coke machines are designed so you can get only 1 drink per payment when newspaper machines allow the consumer to get all of them. What is the economics being considered by this design?
  31. If a price ceiling of $1 per pound was placed on lobster sold at retail, where could you go to eat lobster?
  32. Explain the following statement by a military recruiter: "There's nothing like a good recession to cure our recruiting problems."
  33. Rising commercial rents in San Francisco in recent years have induced many corporations to move their offices out of the city. Can a San Francisco firm that owns its own office building simply ignore rising rents?
  34. Federal law currently prohibits the sale of human organs for transplant purposes. At the present time people are dying while waiting for suitable organs to become available. It seems almost certain that more organs would become available if financial incentives were offered to prospective donors. Would you be in favor of allowing this? What consequences would you predict?
  35. How long will you search for a $20 bill that you lost in your room if you value your time at $5 per hour? Is it rational to search longer than four hours?
  36. You usually pay $1 per bottle for soda. Last Saturday a one time promotion allowed you to get your week supply for $.50 per bottle. Your neighbor comes over and informs you that he just ran out of soda during a party and would like to purchase some from you. What would be a fair price to charge?
  37. Attorney Fudd is the most highly sought-after lawyer in the state. He is also a phenomenal typist who can type 120 words per minute. Should Fudd do his own typing if his fastest secretary can only type 65 words per minute?
  38. Have you ever noticed how few gasoline stations are found in the center of large cities? With such heavy traffic one ought to be able to do an excellent business.  Why then are there so few?
  39. If you saw a bumper sticker that said, "Eliminate Government Waste - At Any Cost," would you agree or disagree? Why?
  40. Gaining extra revenue is easy for any producer----all it has to do is raise the price of its product. Do you agree?



  1. Differentiate among a market order, a limit order, and a stop-loss order.
  2. What is the primary motive for selling short? Describe the basic short-sale procedure.
  3. Describe the procedures and regulations associated with margin trading. Explain restricted accounts, the maintenance margin, and the margin call. Define the term debit balance, and describe the common uses of margin trading.
  4. What are four common investment goals?
  5. Describe the composition of each of the following indexes.
    1. NYSE composite index
    2. AMEX index
    3. Nasdaq indexes
    4. Value Line composite index
    5. Wilshire 5000 index
  6. What is fundamental analysis? Does the performance of a company have any bearing on the value of its stock? Explain.
  7. Briefly describe the dividend valuation model and the different ways this model can be used. Explain how CAPM fits into the dividend valuation model.
  8. Briefly describe the P/E approach to stock valuation.
  9. What is the purpose of technical analysis? Explain how and why technicians use it.
  10. What is random walk hypothesis, and how does it apply to stocks? What is an efficient market? How can a market be efficient if its prices behave in a random fashion?
  11. Explain why it is difficult, if not impossible, to outperform an efficient market consistently.
  12. Does that mean high rates of return are not available in the stock market?
  13. How can an investor earn a high rate of return in an efficient market?
  14. What are the implications of random walks and efficient markets for technical analysis? For fundamental analysis? Do random walks and efficient markets mean that technical analysis and fundamental analysis are useless? Explain.


  1. What information is shown by a security market line?
  2. What are the differences between systematic and unsystematic risk? What is beta and how is it determined?
  3. Explain how the NPV and IRR methods are utilized in capital budgeting.
  4. What are the strengths and weaknesses of the Payback, Profitability Index, NPV, and IRR techniques of capital budgeting?
  5. Explain the differences between the Traditional and Modligiani Miller Capital Structure Models.
  6. What factors should a firm consider in determining an appropriate capital structure?
  7. What factors should a corporation consider in establishing a dividend policy?
  8. Explain how the following could be used by a corporation as an alternative to a cash dividend: (a) stock split, (b) stock dividend, and (c) stock repurchase.
  9. What is a present value?
  10. The present value of a future amount rises (falls). Assuming no change in the future amount, what must have happened?
  11. List at least three things that could cause a bond's yield to change.
  12. What is duration? 
  13. How does a bond's coupon rate and maturity affect its duration?
  14. How does a bond's duration affect the sensitivity of its price to changes in the bond's yield?
  15. What is duration convexity and how does this affect the interpretation of duration analysis?
  16. Describe the relationship between a bond's price and its yield. Is this relationship linear or nonlinear?
  17. Why do stock prices usually fall when interest rates rise (give at least two reasons)
  18. What is arbitrage?
  19. How does arbitrage contribute to an efficient market?
  20. What do the factors in the arbitrage pricing model tell us?
  21. Suppose you expect to receive 1,000,000 Marks in three months. What risk are you facing and how could you use financial derivatives to protect yourself?
  22. Suppose your bank knows for certain it will receive a $10,000,000 loan payment in six months. What risk is it facing and how could it use financial derivatives to protect itself?
  23. What's an interest rate swap? How is an interest rate swap structured so both parties benefit?
  24. What considerations do firms use in determining their optimal capital structure?
  25. How might tariffs and quotas affect a domestic firm's capital structure decision?
  26. What is free cash flow?
  27. What should ethically responsible firm's do with their free cash flow?
  28. Name five variables affecting the value of a call option. How do changes in these variables change the value of the option?
  29. How does one compute the premium on a call option? How does this premium react to changes in the value of the underlying stock?
  30. Does a firm's operating leverage or financial leverage affect its Beta? If so, How?
  31. Using NPV profile analysis, explain why NPV and IRR can provide conflicting investment decisions?
  32. What is capital budgeting?
  33. How does one determine the discount rate used in capital budgeting?
  34. How would changes in the firm's tax rate affect the discount rate used in capital budgeting?
  35. How would changes in the firm's tax rate affect the accept-reject decision in either the NPV or IRR criterions?
  36. Describe the signaling effect of issuing stock vs. debt to finance the firm's capital budget.
  37. Describe how a firm's managers can use dividend policy to provide signals to investors.
  38. How does using debt financing "bond" the firm's free cash flows?
  39. Suppose your firm has $100,000,000 in free cash flow. How might the firm best distribute these funds to shareholders?
  40. What's the difference between a stock split and a stock dividend? What effect do these have on shareholder wealth?
  41. What factors should a firm consider when setting its dividend policy?
  42. What factors would you consider when faced with a bond refunding decision?
  43. What is interest rate parity?  Purchasing power parity?  What financial process works to enforce these concepts?
  44. Describe in detail three theories explaining the shape of the yield curve.
  45. Do you believe managers should take steps to reduce their firm's unsystematic risk? Why or why not?
  46. When is it appropriate (i.e., in the interest of shareholders) for a manager to acquire another firm?
  47. Your firm has decided to layoff 5,000 employees. What obligations, does your firm have to those losing their jobs? What are the implications of these obligations to the firm's shareholders?
  48. Twenty years ago, your firm left toxic waste buried under what is now a middle-class suburban neighborhood. This information recently became public when a high percentage of the residents were diagnosed with cancer.  What action should your firm take? Should you be primarily concerned with the shareholders or the residents? What actions could/should your firm have taken to protect itself?


  1. Discuss the concept of Interest Rate Parity. Be sure to consider the International Fischer Equation and Implied Forward Exchange Rates.
  2. Compare and contrast the following Exchange Systems:
    1. Fixed Exchange
    2. Floating Exchange
    3. Mixed Exchange
  3. Compare and contrast the Gold Standard to the monetary standard that is in effect in the world today.
  4. Discuss the major Events that have occurred in developing the Exchange System that is prevalent in the world today.
  5. Define and Explain the following being careful to describe how each can be used in foreign exchange:
    1. Forward Contracts
    2. Futures Contracts
    3. Currency Options: i. Calls; ii. Puts
  6. Compare and contrast the risks faced by a firm operating in the domestic market versus one that is operating in international markets.
  7. Suppose a firm wishes to issue equity in the international financial markets.  What barriers might they face and how can they circumvent those barriers?
  8. Explain the impact of the European Union on international trade.
  9. Explain how changing technology has impacted international trade and international finance.
  10. It is now possible to trade foreign exchange instruments, essentially, twenty-four hours each day. Has this capability made the markets for these instruments more or less efficient? Please explain.


MGT 504 – Business Organization and Administration

  1. Discuss the various tools of environmental analysis. When would you use each tool and what would this tool tell you about the environment?
  2. Explain the steps you would take in analyzing the environment of an organization.
  3. Why is it important for managers to understand the different cognitive styles of the people who work for them?
  4. Assume you are a manager in charge of multiple teams. What actions would you take to facilitate the success of these teams in the organizations?
  5. Why is important for teams to manage their external boundaries in addition to the internal dynamics of the group?
  6. What are the differences and similarities of managing a physical team to a virtual team?
  7. What are several key lessons that a manager needs to know to manage in a virtual environment?
  8. Explain the steps you would take in motivating your workforce.
  9. What are the basics of leadership? Why is leadership important within an organization?
  10. How would managing a team in a virtual environment differ from managing a traditional co-located team?  What skills would be necessary to effectively manage a virtual team?


  1. Discuss e-HR to include online recruiting, hiring, benefits, and policy manuals.
  2. Know the EEO legislation and its impact in the workplace.
  3. Discuss how HR planning assists an organization in having a competitive advantage.
  4. Discuss the various forms of performance appraisal—traits, behavior, results. What are the advantages and disadvantages of each.
  5. Discuss incentive compensation. How does it work? Is it effective? What must one remember when applying incentives in the workplace?
  6. How do we determine the worth of a job? Discuss job evaluation and how to equitably appraise the value of a job.
  7. Discuss labor unions. How important are they in the workplace today? How many people are currently union members? What are the problems of unions today?
  8. How does collective bargaining work?
  9. What are some international HR challenges today? How many companies use expatriates?
  10. Discuss strategic HR management. How does HR give an organization a competitive advantage?
  11. Do companies really believe “people are our greatest asset”? What would you see in a workplace where this adage is practiced?
  12. Discuss how a HR manager would determine if a person could successfully perform the job during the hiring process?


  1. Why do we need leaders in business organizations?  
  2. What is the role of power in relationship to leadership?  How will you go about gaining power within an organization?
  3. Why are we interested in the various stakeholders of an organization? How would you analyze these stakeholders?
  4. Why is ethical leadership so important? What actions can a leader take to improve ethics within their organization?
  5. How would you define and measure leadership effectiveness?  Why?
  6. Explain the differences and similarities between two styles of leadership?
  7. Why is it important for us to understand the context of leadership?
  8. Discuss various methods that can be used to develop leaders in today’s organizations?
  9. Discuss how leaders can strategically use teams within organizations.
  10. Explain the various components of the follower-leadership relationship.
  11. Assume a company would move to implement a management framework based upon ‘Complexity Theory’.  How would this framework differ from a more traditional management framework?  What would be the advantages or disadvantages of such a move?



  1. Explain the Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) growth-share matrix. Provide examples of strategies that a firm may employ across each quadrant of the matrix.
  2. Explain some of the alternative portfolio models. Under what conditions would each be most appropriate to use? Why?
  3. What is meant by the concept of “strategic planning systems?” Describe the characteristics of effective strategic planning systems.
  4. Describe the characteristics of the product life cycle stages. What are the strategic implications of each of these stages?
  5. Describe some of the strategies one may use in “growth markets”.
  6. Describe some of the strategies one may use for mature or declining markets.
  7. What is meant by “market segmentation?” A number of strategies can help guide a manager’s choice of target markets. What are some of the more common of these strategies?
  8. What are Target Markets? What dimensions can be used to identify these Target Markets? Once identified, how are these Target Markets utilized?
  9. What is positioning? Offer examples of how the positioning of competing brands is different.
  10. Where do companies look for growth? Specifically, what are the four basic categories of growth opportunities for companies today?
  11. With respect to “new product entry strategies,” what are some of the strategic marketing programs for pioneers?
  12. What are sources of secondary data that may aid Marketing Managers in analyzing existing markets and identifying potential markets? What are research methods that could result in primary data that might aid Marketing Managers better understand existing markets and identify potential markets?
  13. Compare and contrast Business Customers and Final Consumers.
  14. Firms can use two kinds of marketing strategies to complete in the international arena - global and national. Describe each of these in a strategic sense. In your description explain the “Standardization” position and “Adaptation” position.


  1. Explain the Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) growth-share matrix. Provide examples of strategies that a firm may employ across each quadrant of the matrix.
  1. Explain some of the alternative portfolio models. Under what conditions would each be most appropriate to use? Why?
  2. Firms can use two kinds of marketing strategies to compete in the international arena – standardized and individualized. Describe each of these in a strategic sense.
  3. Describe the Product Life Cycle and how it is used my Marketing Managers. What are the shortcomings of this management tool?
  4. Describe the characteristics of the product life cycle stages. What are the strategic implications of each of these stages?
  5. What is meant by “market segmentation?” A number of strategies can help guide a manager’s choice of target markets. What are some of the more common of these strategies?
  6. Describe some of the strategies one may use for mature or declining markets.
  7. What is positioning? Offer examples of how the positioning of competing brands is different.
  8. What are Target Markets? What dimensions can be used to identify these Target Markets? Once identified, how are these Target Markets utilized?
  9. Where do companies look for growth? Specifically, what are the four basic categories of growth opportunities for companies today?
  10. What are sources of secondary data that may aid Marketing Managers in analyzing existing markets and identifying potential markets? What are research methods that could result in primary data that might aid Marketing Managers better understand existing markets and identify potential markets?
  11. Compare and contrast Business Customers and Final Consumers.


  1. Describe how culture impacts the four strategic areas of the 4P’s. Which of the four areas is more heavily influenced by culture?  Why would we expect this to be so?
  2. Describe Strategically Equivalent Segments and the steps to arrive at them (Kale and Sudarstan)
  3. What are some of the issues related to products that face varying standards in different countries?
  4. Describe the International Standards Organization. Why is the name ISO used for this organization?
  5. What is ISO9000? Where did this standard come from? How does a firm acquire ISO9000 certification?
  6. What is the Comite Europeen de Normalization? What goes CE mean when applied by this organization? When there is difficulty in harmonizing standards by this organization, what mechanism is used to resolve this dilemma? (German beer, Italian pasta, etc.)
  7. Describe the five dimensions of Hofstede’s Model (Nakata and Sivakumar). Referring to thee history of General Motors, which of these dimensions is most strongly implicated in the shrinking size of their market share? How would this dimension work differently in the case of a Japanese manufacturer?
  8. Differentiate between an international orientation and a global orientation in International Marketing.
  9. Describe the position taken by those who subscribe to the, “Standardization,” position. The, “Adaptation,” position.
  10. What is meant by the term, “Globalization?” How would this differ from the position taken in Global Marketing?
  11. Describe several non-tariff barriers to entry found in International Marketing
  12. Describe four strategies that could be used in order to standardize a firm’s advertising.
  13. Describe three ways a firm can organize its advertising agencies in the international arena.
  14. Describe transfer pricing.  In the international area of marketing why do firms often take a low markup in one country and a higher one in another (Assume here that the product is made in one nation and sold in the other).
  15. What are the four managerial tools available to management to control their channels?
  16. In Export Marketing, why are their two channel members composing the channel?