Case Assignment 3: CN
Your client is Canadian National Railways. It has hired your company to help them think through the outlook for their industry 2 years from now. As part of your report, they would you to help them make sense of some of the uncertainty that lies ahead using Scenario Analysis and TOWS Analysis. In terms of the scenario analysis, please create four scenarios of what the industry will look like 24 months from now. Scenarios should be labeled, best case, worst case and two moderate cases. To create the scenarios, please follow the follow process. Please identify 6 to 8 trends affecting the industry. Then identify five or six key uncertainties facing companies in the industry. For each of these uncertainties, identify offer a measurement scale (high, low; hot cold; light heavy). From these uncertainties, pick the two with the highest potential impact on your company. Explain why these two have the highest impact. From these two uncertainties create the scenarios. Then suggest which scenario is most likely and why.
Based on your choice of one of these scenarios, Please create a TOWS analysis of your company and its operating environment offering three points for each quadrant and ensure that each point is supported with empirical data. Choose the most important point from each quadrant. Match the categories as follows: strength/opportunity, strength/threat, weakness/opportunity, weakness/threat and suggest a strategic response by the company.
Please reference online information sources appropriately using endnotes. Please end the analysis with a discussion regarding implications. In others, after gathering the data, so what? What does it mean?
• Shoemaker, P. (1995) Scenario Planning: A Tool for Strategic Thinking. Sloan Management Review Winter 25 – 40.
• Wierich, H. (1982). The TOWS Matrix – A tool for situational planning. Long Range Planning, 15 (2), 54 – 66.