Goodwell Systems - Graduate

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

Working for a consultancy, which has just won two big contracts, the participant is required to devise a resourcing plan to meet the needs of the contracts. Options include using contractors, training up internal staff using quick expensive training, or providing longer term on the job training. Each option has varied cost, timescale and sustainability implications. There is additional material to be considered, including: information on market and technological trends; customers and future resourcing requirements, and the merits of staff who could take on project leadership roles.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Planning and Organising, Influencing and Persuading, Communication.

Hexagon - Graduate

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 75 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant takes on the role of a Business Analyst working for Hexagon, a pharmaceutical company, and is asked to help a Medical Representative prepare a mini-business plan. The plan needs to include a summary of the representative’s business performance, an overview of the current influences (internal and external) on this business area and recommendations to ensure that the representative builds business in their territory. In order to do this, information is available about the organisation, the products, the competition and the Medical Representative’s performance over the last 12 months.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Decision making, Planning and Organising, Influencing and Persuading, Ethics and Values.

Screenplex - Graduate

Timing

Admin: 10 minutes

Analysis: 60 minutes

Present: 10 minutes

Q&A: 10 minutes

In this exercise the participant is asked to assume the position of a Management Trainee who has been asked to review the operation of one cinema in the Screenplex UK-wide chain. S/he is given information on the audience profile, staffing, financial position and customer feedback and must come up with recommendations to improve performance. (See also Screenplex Group and Fact Find exercises).

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Decision Making, Influencing and Persuading

Ransdorf Bank - Graduate

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 60 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant takes the role of a Management Trainee undertaking a placement in the Bank’s Customer Service Centre. They have been tasked with a special project investigating the recent decline in customer satisfaction. The key issues to be addressed are the decrease in customer satisfaction, the increase in customer complaints and customer attrition. The participant is given information about Customer Service Advisor issues including call quality and volumes, resourcing and training. There is also some data about the Bank’s recent roll-out of a new system and its impact on service. The participant has to analyse the available data, identify the issues and come up with a plan of action to resolve the problems and improve performance. (See also Ransdorf Bank Negotiation and Group exercises).  

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Decision Making, Planning and Organising, Influencing and Persuading

Steeds - Graduate

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 60 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant assumes the role of a graduate trainee working for Steeds Ltd, a retailer selling bikes and cycling accessories. As part of their traineeship the participant is undertaking a placement in head office working on the retail performance team. The participant has been asked to review the performance of the Quorton store. To do this they have been provided with information about the store. This includes: details about the Quorton area; cycling opportunities in the area; a description of the store and what it sells; a staffing profile; details of any competition; customer and quality assurance feedback and a financial summary. The participant must analyse this information to summarise the store’s current performance and make recommendations for improvement. (See also Steeds Group exercise)

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Decision Making, Influencing and Persuading, communication, Performance Orientation

Sheldons - Graduate

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant is a newly recruited manager working in the Strategy & Investment department of Sheldons (Capital), part of the Sheldons Group.  The company is seeking to invest in one of three potential investment targets.  The participant is asked to analyse information, both quantitative and qualitative, on each of the target companies to determine which of the three best meets Sheldons’ criteria for investment and give reasons why.  The information on each company includes, historical and forecasted financials, market conditions, current competition, internal and external issues that are impacting on the company performance.  The participant is also required to provide recommendations on how to improve the operational performance of the selected company.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Decision Making, Influencing and Persuading, Communication, Performance Orientation

Legacy - First Line Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The European based Legacy Corporation owns a number of historic sites which are open to the public. In this exercise the participant must conduct a review of one of these sites – the Estil Estate. This Estate has been underperforming and is proposing to introduce a new initiative to increase the number of visitors. The participant must conduct a thorough review of the initiative, devise a plan for implementation, produce an estimate of income and costs for the coming year and recommend action on a number of other staffing, managerial and customer service issues across the Estate. (See also Legacy Fact Find, Coaching and Group exercises).

Typical Competencies Assessed: Leadership, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Planning and Organising, Influencing and Persuading

Papillon Wine Club - First Line Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 60 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant takes the role of a Management Trainee undertaking a placement in the Bank’s Customer Service Centre. They have been tasked with a special project investigating the recent decline in customer satisfaction. The key issues to be addressed are the decrease in customer satisfaction, the increase in customer complaints and customer attrition. The participant is given information about Customer Service Advisor issues including call quality and volumes, resourcing and training. There is also some data about the Bank’s recent roll-out of a new system and its impact on service. The participant has to analyse the available data, identify the issues and come up with a plan of action to resolve the problems and improve performance. (See also Ransdorf Bank Negotiation and Group exercises).  

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Decision Making, Planning and Organising, Influencing and Persuading

A&H Tissue - First Line Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 60 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant takes on the role of Account Manager for A&H Tissue, a company manufacturing disposable tissue products that are supplied to large retail customers. The participant has responsibility for one of the biggest customer accounts – Fresh Store. The exercise task is to review the performance of the Fresh Store account and make recommendations for how to improve it. A number of specific issues need to be covered including customer dissatisfaction, reduction in orders, quality issues with the products, staffing issues affecting production, delivery issues with the logistics partner, new product ideas, pricing schedule and profitability challenges.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Influencing and Persuading, Decision Making, Communication, Ethics and Values

Alvsen Concise Analysis - First Line Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 45 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant takes on the role of Business Development Manager working in the Regional Office of Alvsen Pharmaceuticals. In one country in the region Alvsen currently markets its products using a distributor, but the management team is considering setting up an affiliate office there. The participant is asked to choose between the 2 options. In addition, the participant should also make recommendations for increasing Alvsen’s market share and profit. The brief contains background information about the country, such as the political situation and the healthcare market, and specific product information, including sales and growth figures. Financial information is given for both options, to enable the participant to calculate approximate profit figures using either a distributor or an affiliate office. This is a concise analysis, so participants are expected to add their own business knowledge to the information in the brief.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Performance Orientation, Influencing and Persuading, Communication

Alvsen Hakkanda - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant assumes the role of a newly recruited Head of Human Resources to Alvsen Hakkanda, an affiliate company of the Alvsen Pharmaceuticals group. There are a number of HR issues facing the affiliate and the General Manager would like to get the participant’s thoughts on how to tackle these. The participant is provided with some papers to review, including: an organisational structure chart; a staff engagement survey; headcount and attrition data; correspondence about a recruitment issue; sales figures and details of some specific people management issues around which advice is needed. The participant should analyse the information to identify the issues and generate recommendations to address them.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Team Working, Developing Others, Communication, Influencing and Persuading

Alvsen Improvement Project - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant takes on the role of a manager working for Alvsen Pharmaceuticals. The participant has been seconded to head up the Clinical, Medical & Regulatory function of one of Alvsen’s affiliates and is asked to review the affiliate’s performance, in particular the performance of the departments in this function. Information available for review includes economic and demographic information about the country, as well as an overview of the healthcare system and healthcare market. Internal data given includes the company’s products and sales figures, plus information about the different functions, employees, Sales & Marketing and departmental budget. The participant is also asked to make suggestions for how the affiliate should prepare for a new product launch in 2 years’ time.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Performance Orientation, Leadership, Communication, Influencing and Persuading

ASC - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant takes on the role of acting Country Manager at ASC, a global management consultancy that provides specialist expertise to the engineering sector. Information provided includes financial performance data, an employee opinion survey, regional targets, project management progress, health and safety concerns and a complex client request. The participant must analyse the current situation and make recommendations on the strategic direction of the branch office. They must also make a choice about which of 2 research projects to support.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Leadership, Influencing and Persuading, Communication, Performance Orientation

Click - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant takes on the role of a newly recruited manager to Click, a company which designs software to run a number of back office systems. The company has been successful and the Directors want to capitalise on this and ensure that Click maintains, and hopefully increases, its growth rate. There are, however, a number of problems including strong competition, poor communication etc. The participant has to review the data available to them and come up with a strategy to tackle the issues and grow the business.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Planning and Organising, Decision Making, Developing Others, Influencing and Persuading

Curaco - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant takes on the role of a newly recruited manager to Curaco Pharmaceuticals. They are given information about a branch office in a fictional country which they have been asked to manage. This includes information on customers, products, staff, P & L, sales and local competition. The participant must examine this information and come up with a plan for improving the performance of the branch office. The plan should cover: sales, financial performance and the overall management of the office. (See also Curaco Negotiation exercises).

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Influencing and Persuading, Developing Others

Look and Learn - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant takes on the role of an interim Chief Executive at an educational charity called Look and Learn. They are given information about the charity’s current operation: fund-raising, premises, staffing, finances, users etc. The participant must make an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the charity and come up with a strategy and plan to deliver to the charity’s Trustees.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Influencing and Persuading, Communication

Banco Damasco - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 60 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant takes the role of a Management Trainee undertaking a placement in the Bank’s Customer Service Centre. They have been tasked with a special project investigating the recent decline in customer satisfaction. The key issues to be addressed are the decrease in customer satisfaction, the increase in customer complaints and customer attrition. The participant is given information about Customer Service Advisor issues including call quality and volumes, resourcing and training. There is also some data about the Bank’s recent roll-out of a new system and its impact on service. The participant has to analyse the available data, identify the issues and come up with a plan of action to resolve the problems and improve performance. (See also Ransdorf Bank Negotiation and Group exercises).  

Typical Competencies Assessed: Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Decision Making, Planning and Organising, Influencing and Persuading

Stryve - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 10 mins

Q&A: 10 mins

The participant is a newly appointed Commercial Manager at Stryve a global corporation producing home care, beauty and personal care products. As Commercial Manager the participant is asked to review current performance and make recommendations for improved performance.  The participant is provided with detailed information from across the organisation such as: shopping trends, product range and pricing information, buyer profiles, product and marketing strategy, new product developments, market analysis graphs, competitor information, customer research charts and figures, customer feedback survey, sales dashboard, production dashboards and an employee engagement survey. A range of topics can be explored including: Marketing & PR issues, commercial issues such as sales and order challenges, production and manufacturing issues, and employee challenges.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Leadership, Analytical Thinking, Strategic Thinking, Decision Making, Communication, Influencing and Persuading, Performance Orientation

Hansen - Middle Manager

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 90 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant takes on the role of a newly-appointed General Manager of a small business unit, working for Hansen Consumer Goods. Hansen produces personal care goods (toiletries) and a small range of food items. The participant is asked to review the business unit’s performance and to put together a strategy for improving its performance. This should include an analysis of the business unit’s financial situation, current leadership issues and other challenges and opportunities. Information available for review includes internal information such as organisational structure, HR information and metrics such as P&L and sales and market share figures. The brief also contains external information, such as industry trends and demographic and customer insight data. There is an update that can be given part way through the participant’s preparation time, asking for a decision about recalling a product.

Glebel - Executive

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 75 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

The participant takes on the role of the Managing Director of the Cakes Division of Glebel Foods, a fast moving consumer goods company, manufacturing biscuits, snackfoods and cakes. The Cakes Division is not achieving its potential and the participant has been hired to improve performance.  They are asked to review a number of documents including: an income statement and forecast; sales results; new product ideas; customer views; factory relocation proposal, to summarise the current position and put forward strategies and actions to maximise future performance. (See also Glebel Coaching, Negotiation and Group exercises).

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Influencing and Persuading, Leadership, Communication, Performance Orientation

Drachen Airways - Executive

Timing

Admin: 10 mins

Analysis: 75 mins

Present: 15 mins

Q&A: 15 mins

Written Press Release (optional): 20 mins

The participant takes on the role of the Head of External Communication and PR for Drachen Airways and is provided with a large amount of information including: market research, revenue figures, social media postings, call centre data, proposals to open airline lounges and to launch a business class service. They are required to analyse the information and make an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of Drachen’s external communication and generate a strategy for improvement. The participant must also make specific suggestions for how the business class service should be launched. In this exercise there is also the option of using an additional exercise where the participant is asked to write a press release to pre-empt an article which will be published in a national newspaper the following day. The press release option can be used with either the presentation or report formats of the exercise.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Creative Thinking, Decision Making, Leadership, Influencing and Persuading, Communication

Vorlinden - Executive

Timing

Admin: 10 minutes

Analysis: 75 minutes

Present: 15 minutes

Q&A: 15 minutes

The participant takes on the role of the newly appointed Strategy and Performance Director for Vorlinden PLC, a general insurance products company (i.e. non-life). They have been recruited to develop a strategy to take the business forward and are provided with a large amount of information to help them do this. This includes: the annual financial statement; policy sales and renewal data; results of staff and customer surveys and proposals for acquisitions. The participant must analyse the information and put forward a strategy, together with actions to implement it.

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Leadership, Influencing and Persuading, Communication, Performance Orientation

 

Wayside - Executive

Timing

Admin: 10 minutes

Analysis: 90 minutes

Present: 10 minutes

Q&A: 15 minutes

As a senior Sales Manager, the participant is asked to take responsibility for devising a plan to increase the utilisation and revenue of the Wayside Hotel health clubs. Detailed information is supplied on the current operation of the health clubs, including facilities, capacity, costs, revenue generation, marketing and staffing. The exercise requires the participant to analyse the current situation, evaluate possible revenue streams and their impact on the business, and make recommendations. To be successful, the participant also needs to consider internal sensitivities and possible opposition

Typical Competencies Assessed: Strategic Thinking, Analytical Thinking, Decision Making, Managing Relationships, Influencing and Persuading