Below are the instructions for completing the Multinational Company (MNC) Research Paper. See the course calendar for the final paper due date and the due date for selecting your MNC.
The ability to conduct in-depth research, synthesize your findings, and present those findings in a written paper is a crucial skill within the discipline of business. This research paper will teach students how to:
1. Write in a business voice
2. Find relevant information from business research sources
3. Synthesize research from various sources
4. Communicate your findings in a written paper
The Assignment: Submit a written in-depth managerial analysis of a MNC (e.g., a company or organization with operations in several countries). Any company listed on the public stock exchange that is an MNC is acceptable. Conduct a Google search with something like “a list of publicly traded MNCs”. The official New York Stock Exchange website has a listings directory.
Also, Wikipedia has a listing at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_multinational_corporations
Just make sure your chosen company is not a privately owned company because you won’t be able to find all the information needed for the paper.
Format of Paper:
Approximately 10-15 double-spaced pages with well documented references & bibliography. Include the main headings as listed below and then number each item under each of the main headings.
Company Background (50 points)
- Company Name (provide its stock market ticker tape id), location of the company headquarters, and the names of the countries where it conducts business. (5 points)
- What are its products and services? (15 points)
- Provide information about the history of the company. Here is a good list of things to look for. You are not required to answer all of these questions and you can include information not on this list. The objective is to present informative information about your company. (15 points)
- How old is the company?
- How many does it employ?
- What are interesting tidbits about the company?
- Has it merged with other companies?
- Has it acquired or been acquired by other companies?
- How has it developed into a multinational company?
- What have been some recent developments within the company?
- Has the company been in the news recently? If so, why?
- Financial Health of your company. (refer to ch 16) (15 points)
Note: To determine the financial health of a company, managers will evaluate financial data. The use of financial ratio analysis is one aspect of this evaluation. Financial ratios are relationships determined from a company’s financial information and used for comparison purposes.
Provide the following information: (yahoo.com financial is a good place to find most of this data)
- Company Financial Data: Market Value, also known a capitalization. The market value of a corporation is the value of the firm based on the price that shareholders are willing to pay for stock in the company on public markets.
How to find: go to yahoo.com and click on finance. In the search box type your company name. Scroll down and click on “financials”. Click on “summary”. The market capitalization is reflected as “Market Cap”. This is the value of the firm on this particular date.
- Liquidity Ratio. This ratio indicates how easily a company’s assets can be converted into cash (made liquid). Include the formula with the company’s current assets and current liabilities.
The current ratio (current assets/current liabilities) shows the proportion of current assets of a company in relation to its current liabilities. It is the most widely used test of liquidity and measures the ability of a company to repay its debts over the period of a year. Current assets are the items on a company’s balance sheet that are either cash, a cash equivalent, or which can be converted into cash within one year. Current liabilities are the obligations of a company that need to be settled within the same year.
How to find: Both figures can be obtained from the balance sheet of the company. Go to yahoo.com and click on finance. In the search box type your company name. Scroll down and click on “financials”. Click on “Balance Sheet”. For this ratio you will need to calculate the ratio. Look for the current year column and divide Current Assets/Current Liabilities. Be sure you are using Current and not Total.
Current ratio is calculated using the following formula: (Include this formula with your company’s data…show your work)
Current ratio = Current Assets
Current ratio tells us whether the current assets are enough to settle current liabilities. Current ratio below 1 shows critical liquidity problems because it means that total current liabilities exceed total current assets. A general rule is that the higher the current ratio the better it is. Generally, companies would aim to maintain a current ratio of at least 1 to ensure that the value of their current assets cover at least the amount of their short term obligations. However, a current ratio of greater than 1 provides additional cushion against unforeseeable contingencies that may arise in the short term.
- Debt Management Ratio. This ratio indicates the degree to which an organization can meet its long-range financial obligation. It is a measure of a company’s financial leverage calculated by dividing its total liabilities by stockholders’ equity. It indicates what proportion of equity and debt the company is using to finance its assets. Include the formula with the company’s total liabilities and shareholders’ equity.
How to find: Both total liabilities and shareholders’ equity figures can be obtained from the balance sheet of a business.
Debt-to-equity ratio is calculated using the following formula: (Include this formula with your company’s data…show your work)
Debt-to-Equity Ratio = Total Liabilities
Lower values of debt-to-equity ratio are favorable indicating less risk. Higher debt-to-equity ratio is unfavorable because it means that the business relies more on external lenders thus it is at a higher risk. A debt-to-equity ratio of 1:00 means that half of the assets of a business are financed by debts and half by shareholders’ equity. A value higher than 1:00 means that more assets are financed by debt than those financed by money of shareholders. A value less than 1:00 means that more assets are financed by shareholders equity than by debt.
An increasing trend in of debt-to-equity ratio is also alarming because it means that the percentage of assets of a business which are financed by the debts is increasing.
- Analysis of Company. Based on the above data, what conclusions can you make about the overall financial health of this company? This analysis should be at least 3 sentences addressing each of the ratios.
Stakeholder and Social Responsibility – Ch 3 (30 points)
- What is the company doing to be socially responsible? Be specific. Provide one example and in your own words discuss how it is an example of social responsibility.
- Identify three external stakeholders in the task environment (each from a different category) and discuss very specifically why each stakeholder is important to the company. You must identify the stakeholder by name (don’t just say “supplier” – provide the name of the supplier).
- Identify one force within the General Environment and discuss how that force has impacted or could impact your company
Mission/Strategy/Goals – Ch 5 & 6 (30 points)
- What are the vision and/or mission statement of the company? Provide your assessment of this statement.
- Define and assess the organization’s strategy. Select just one strategy. (growth, stability, or defensive)
- Identify one goal or strategy the company is currently pursuing. Discuss what makes it a SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Results-Oriented, Target Dates) goal or strategy.
Company Structure (Description of how the company is organized) – Ch 8
- Provide the company organization chart – there are two ways to do this. 1. Cut & paste from the company website or 2. Make your own diagram based on what you know about the company design. (this is the only place in your paper where you can cut & paste information).
- Identify the company design (from the three types of designs identified in the chapter) and structure within this design. Explain this design/structure type as it relates to your company. (For example: Your company might be a traditional design with a simple structure).
Organizational Culture – Ch 8 (20 points)
- The book describes four types of organizational cultures: 1. Clan, 2. Adhocracy, 3. Market, 4. Hierarchy. Of the four types of cultures discussed in the book, which one best describes the company? Provide your rationale. In your own words, describe the company’s organizational culture. (clan, adhocracy, hierarch, market).
- Culture is transmitted to employees in several ways. Most often through such means as: 1. Symbols, 2. Stories, 3. Heroes, 4. Rites and rituals, 5. Organizational socialization. Select one of the following five ways, and in your own words, explain how the company culture is transmitted from upper management to first line employees. Provide an example to support your discussion.
Motivation – Ch 12 (10 points)
(Note: For this part of assignment you must apply critical thinking skills and deductive reasoning. I doubt that you will find a source or article that specifically uses the motivational theory term to describe how the company motivates its employees. However, as you research articles and scan the company website you should be able to infer the theory being used from your knowledge of the motivational techniques.)
- In your own words, describe the motivational environment of the company based on at least one of the motivational theories found in the textbook. Provide an example to support your chosen motivational theory. You must identify the theory.
Management Analysis – Ch 14 (30 points)
- Key leaders and managers in the company. Select three of the key leaders or managers and include the following:
- Name, title
- level of management (top, middle, or first-line)
- background/experience (throughout their career, not just with this company)
- education (identify their formal schooling)
- additional pertinent information about each individual
- Who is on the board of directors?
- List the names of every board member, along with the company where they work and their title at that company.
- Select three of these board members who are not employed by the company you are researching and include what credentials or qualifications they have to serve on the board. In your own words, what qualifies them to serve on this board?
- Read up on the CEO of your company. What can you say about the CEO’s leadership style? How would you describe it? What evidence supports your description of his/her leadership style? (use textbook material in your answer)
Conclusion (10 points)
What do you find most interesting about this company? Write at least 2 paragraphs describing what you found interesting about this company.
- Start your research early in the semester. Budget blocks of time (2-3 hours) adequate to do serious searching. Finding the information itself is not difficult once the important sources are known. Filtering, sorting, organizing, and coming up with relevant conclusions can take considerably more time.
- This is not a “copy & paste” assignment. Use what you find to write the report in your own words.
- Once your company is identified, it helps to become familiar with your company through summary readings.
- Information can be found through various sources.
- Finance.yahoo.com (key in the company name in the “look up” box)
- Company Annual Report – 10K filing
- literature reviews (ex: bios of founders)
- company websites
- industry analysis (search on one of the many websites: Moodys, earningswhispers, valueline, Hoovers, Businesswire, wetfeet, Forbes list of best companies).
- Business Periodicals (Wall Street Journal, NY Times, Forbes, Fortune)
- Read the assignment all the way through one time for general understanding and ask the instructor to clarify any parts that are unclear.
- Reread the assignment – this time section by section as you refer to the textbook material.
- Begin your research. Take time to digest your research and to map out your ideas.
- Write your first draft. Always allow time to revise and NEVER turn in your first draft.
- Reread the assignment. Make sure that you have fulfilled all the requirements in your first draft. Is each piece of information explained? Is each piece of information clearly addressing the requirement?
- Evaluate your paper for overall format, spelling, and grammar. Have you used word processing software to spell check the paper? Check your citations.
- Write your final paper.
- Write in third person format NOT first person. Business papers are more formal and should be written in third person.
- Do not use promotional language such as: “McDonalds, I’m loving it”. This is an objective paper. You are not writing for the company but producing unbiased analysis.
- Do not use informal language. Examples would be contractions like don’t and can’t. Symbols such as @, #, &.
- When financial data is presented, use $3 billion for three billion dollars.
- All work in this paper must be your own. Do not copy from the company website.
- Submit your research paper as a word document uploaded to the assignment link provided in the Research Paper folder.
- You must include a works cited (bibliography page) using APA format.
- Here are some helpful links for APA Formatting:
- Formatting Basics: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pdAfIqRt60c
- Reference List Basics: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HpAOi8-WUY4
- Purdue OWL: APA Reference List: Basic Rules: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/res…
- Purdue OWL: APA Reference List: Author/Authors: http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/res..
- Be sure your name appears on your paper.
How to properly submit the paper:
- complete your paper as a docx or pdf
- once you create your document then go into the assignment link (do not type directly in the write submission box or comment box)
- Under item 2 in the assignment link click on “browse my computer” and attach your work (do not submit your assignment in “item 3 – add comments”).
- Scroll down to item 4 and click submit
Late papers will be accepted up to two days after the due date.
- If a paper is one day late, there will be a 10% penalty, if it is two days late, there will be a 20% penalty
Grade Check list: Below is a checklist of all required sections of your paper, along with point values for each section. Use this checklist to make sure you’ve addressed all sections of the paper.
|Company Background 50 points|
|1. Company name, ticker tape id, location|
|of headquarters, names of countries where|
|it conducts business – 5 pts|
|2. Products and Services – 15 pts|
|3. History of Company – 15 pts|
|how old, how many it employs, tidbits,|
|mergers, acquistions, recent|
|4. Financial Health (Ch 16)- 15 pts|
|a. Market Value|
|b. Current ratio|
|c. Debt management ratio|
|d. Analysis of the company|
|Stakeholder & Social Responsibility (Ch 3) – 30 points|
|1. example of social responsibility|
|2. 3 external stakeholders (task envir)|
|3. 1 force in General environment|
|Msn/Strategy/Goals 30 points|
|1. vision and/or mission statement (Ch 5)|
|2. strategy (growth, stability, defensive) (Ch 6)|
|3. SMART goal (Ch 6)|
|Company Structure (Ch 8) -20 points|
|1. organizational chart|
|2. company design & structure|
|Organizational Culture (Ch 8) – 20 points|
|1. Company’s culture – 4 types|
|2. Company culture transmitted|
|Motivation (Ch 12) – 10 points|
|1. motivational environment|
|Management Analysis (Ch 9 & 14)- 30 pts|
|1. Key leaders – select 3|
|2. Board of directors|
|3. CEO’s leadership style|
|Conclusion – 10 pts Works Cited Page (50 points will be deducted without it)|
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