Week 2 The External Environment Assessment

Week 2 The External Environment Assessment

Company list

Nike Inc – NYSE: NKE 

Week 2 The External Environment Assessment

To successfully craft a strategy that fits with a company’s situation, builds competitive advantage, and improves performance, managers must have insight into a company’s external and internal environment.  The internal environment will be discussed in Week 3. The external environment comprises all the entities outside of an organization’s boundaries that affect its growth and survival. An organization has little to no control over the external environment, so there is a need to monitor, prepare, and adapt to the changes constantly. Understanding the information that comes from the external environment is crucial to an organization’s long-term planning and in identifying its competitor’s actions. Completing an external environmental analysis helps an organization update or adapt its internal core competencies, structure, culture, or other internal environmental factors.

To identify and analyze the key drivers of change in an organization’s general business environment, a PESTEL analysis is completed. Porter’s Five Forces (see above graphic) is a framework that helps an organization analyze the level of competition within a specific industry; and a partial SWOT (OT) helps identify the threats and opportunities that exist in the environment. 

At this point, it is necessary to clarify a few points. An industry consists of a group of companies that are related based on their primary business activities. When you hear industry, this refers to the global industry and not to a specific country or region of the world. Individual companies are classified into an industry based on the largest source of revenue. Industries are grouped into larger categories called sectors.  

When completing an external or internal environmental analysis, you should note patterns, trends, and relationships as techniques that help complete an analysis. That uncertainty reduces an organization’s ability to predict with confidence the future of its environment. A pattern is a series of data that repeats recognizably, whereas a trend has to do with the general movement or change in a situation over time.  Relationships have to do with how concepts, information, organizations, people are connected. 

Resources that I have to use to cite below:


PDF. Evaluating the External Environment




Turnitin™ enabledThis assignment will be submitted to Turnitin™.



NOTE:  All submitted work is to be your original work (only your work). You may not use any work from another student, the Internet, or an online clearinghouse. You are expected to understand the Academic Dishonesty and Plagiarism Policy and know that it is your responsibility to learn about your Instructor and general academic expectations concerning proper citation sources as specified in the APA Publication Manual, 7th Ed. (You are held accountable for in-text citations and an associated reference list only).

This project is the first of four projects. This project provides the first steps in completing an external environmental analysis of your specific company’s strategic management plan. You will use tools and apply concepts learned in this and previous business courses to demonstrate an understanding of how organizations develop and manage strategies to establish, safeguard and sustain their competitive position in the 21st century (rapidly evolving/shifting/changing), uncertain hyper-competitive business environment. 

Completing a company overview and assessing the general environment is key in performing an external environment analysis. This project provides you with the opportunity to evaluate the competitive position of one of the organizations listed below and integrate that information into the beginnings of an external environmental analysis. 

The company you will be analyzing operates within the global market. Therefore, you will assess the company in terms of the global industry. Industries differ widely in their economic characteristics, competitive situation, and future profit potential.

In this project, you are presenting a report document. The expectation is that the report provides details to help the audience grasp the main topics and understand the business climate. 

“Analysis” is the operative word. In analyzing the external environment, you are expected to thoroughly research the company. As part of that effort, you will need to take that research and break it into small parts to understand better what is happening in the external environment of the business. In researching an industry, it is important to understand that every company within an industry is different, so gathering information on one company does not mean that the collected information is relevant to other companies. When researching, parsing the material is critical to an accurate analysis. Avoid presenting just any information as that may lead to using irrelevant information.

You will then write the report in your own words to share the external analysis. You are expected to present information with supporting ideas and reasoning using the course material and your research. You will not lift any information from source documents without properly citing and referencing. For the technical analysis aspect of the project, you must create the technique on your own and may not use any source material that you happen to find. No work from a clearinghouse or similar website may be used or cited as a credible source. 

In completing the report, you will use the chapters in the eBook and other course material. Moreover, you will research the company and its industry before responding, in narrative form, to the information provided in the steps (see below)

In this project, you will complete a Company Overview, an Evaluation of the General Environment, and a conclusion.

You will be assigned by your instructor one specific company to complete the analysis. The assigned company must be used for all four projects in this course. You cannot write a report on any other company different from the company specifically assigned by your instructor. If a company other than that assigned to you is used, a zero will be assigned.

Step 2 Course Materials and Research

You are required to research information about the specific company and the external environment for this project. You are accountable for using the course materials to support the ideas, reasoning, and conclusions made.

Course material’s use goes beyond defining terms and explains the ‘why and how’ of a situation. Using one or two in-text citations from the course materials and then relying on Internet source material will not earn many points on the assignment. A variety of source material is expected, and what is presented must be relevant and applicable to the topic being discussed.
Avoid merely making statements but close the loop of the discussion by explaining how
something happens or why
something happens, which focuses on importance and impact. In closing the loop, you will demonstrate the ability to think clearly and rationally, showing an understanding of the logical connections between the ideas presented from the research, the course material, and the question(s) being asked.

Note: Your report is based on the research results performed and not on any prepared documentation. What this means is that you will research and draw your own conclusions that are supported by the research and the course material rather than the use of any source material that puts together any of the tools or techniques whether from the Internet, for-pay websites, or any pre-prepared document, video or source material. A zero will be earned for not doing your own analysis.

Success:  The analysis is based on research and

not opinion
You are not making recommendations, and you will not attempt to position the specific company in a better or worse light than other companies within the industry merely because you are completing an analysis on this particular company. The analysis must be based on

factual information.
Any conclusions drawn have to be based on factual information rather than leaps of faith. To ensure success, as stated above, you are expected to use the course materials and research on the specific company’s global industry and the specific company. An opinion does not earn credit, nor does the use of external sources when course materials can be used.  It is necessary to provide explanations (the why and how) rather than making statements. Avoid stringing one citation after another, as doing so does not show detailed explanations.

Additional Library Resources

Research for Company Financial Ratios: Financial Research. 

Research for Industry Financial Ratios: CSI Market.   

Use “OneSearch” to find scholarly articles by clicking Library under Academic Support on the classroom main menu bar and checkmark “Scholarly Journals Only” prior to starting a search.

Step 3  How to Set Up the Report:

The document must be written in Word or RTF. No other format is acceptable. Pdf files will not be graded. Use 12-point font for a double-spaced report.
The final product should be

7 – 8 pages. It may not exceed 8 pages, including all tables and matrices, but excluding the title and reference pages.

Do no use an Appendix.

Create Topic Headings that correspond to the exact sections of the project requirements.

Step 4 Company Overview

Provide a company overview, which is an essential component of the strategic management process. The company overview includes the purpose(s) for the founding of the company (i.e., what problem(s) was it formed to solve and/or opportunities it was formed to exploit, who are the founders, home country or state, current management, employee headcount, last year’s revenue, etc.).

Step 5 Evaluate the General Environment

 Identify the global industry in which the company operates. 

 Discuss the company’s general environment by developing a PESTEL analysis.

· First, use the course material to identify the elements of the PESTEL and what components make up each element. Then, complete the analysis using research on the industry and the specific company. Be sure to present and support the reasoning for what is presented thoroughly. You may not use a PESTEL analysis that is already completed and available on the Internet. A zero will result if used as the analysis has to result from your research and your own development.

NOTE: A PESTEL analysis is not a table, and it is not a bulleted assessment.

 Identify and discuss one key trend for each letter of the PESTEL for the industry. Key trends are separate from the PESTEL analysis.

 Select one of the six trends identified in the previous requirement and discuss how the selected trends could affect the specific company.

 Discuss key areas of uncertainty related to the identified trend for the specific company that could potentially impact the company’s strategy.

 Perform strategic analysis of the company’s mission, vision, and objective

Step 6 Conclusion

Create a conclusion. The Conclusion is intended to emphasize the purpose/significance of the analysis, emphasize the significance/consequence of findings, and indicate the wider applications derived from the main points of the project’s requirements. Finally, you will conclude the findings of the external environment analysis.

Step 7  Review the Paper 

The following are specific requirements that you will follow. Use the checklist to mark off that you have followed each specific requirement. 


Specific Project Requirements


Proofread your paper.


Read and use the grading rubric while completing the paper to ensure all requirements are met to lead to the highest possible grade. 


Third-person writing is required. Third-person means that there are no words such as “I, me, my, we, or us” (first-person writing), nor is there use of “you or your” (second-person writing). If uncertain how to write in the third person, view this link:



Contractions are not used in business writing, so do not use them.  


Paraphrase and do not use direct quotations. Paraphrase means you do not use more than four consecutive words from a source document. Removing quotation marks and citing is inappropriate.  Instead, put a passage from a source document into your own words and attribute the passage to the source document. There should be no passages with quotation marks. Using more than four consecutive words from a source document would require direct quotation marks.  Changing words from a passage does not exclude the passage from having quotation marks. If more than four consecutive words are used from source documents, this material will not be included in the grade.  

You are expected to use the research and weekly course materials to develop the analysis and support the reasoning. Therefore, there should be a robust use of the course material. The material used from a source document must be cited and referenced. A reference within a reference list cannot exist without an associated in-text citation and vice versa. Changing words from a passage does not exclude the passage from having quotation marks.