You have been summoned to help Brad Dickerson develop recommendations for how to improve or turn things around at Blue Apron prior to the next earnings call. As you prepare your recommendation (to Mr. Brad Dickerson), be sure to consider the following factors:
•What can Blue Apron do to increase customer profitability?
•What customer metrics should Blue Apron use to improve customer value and overall performance?
•What are Blue Apron’s opportunities and threats?
Use the case as well as the accompanying spreadsheet to help you arrive at your recommendation. When necessary you should make use of exhibits (e.g. to show revenue or profit calculations), but the memo should be able to stand on its own, that is, be clear about the recommendation and justifications.
•Every assignment should have a cover page (not included in the page limit) with your name, the title of the assignment, and the date submitted.
•Memos have a page limit of ONE page.
•Assignments should be typed in 12-point font and business format, single line space, with one inch margins on all sides. For each case you will assume that you are a marketing consultant hired by the company that is the subject of the case to respond to the strategic marketing questions given. Your report should be in the form of a business memo– addressed to the decision maker identified in the case. Begin with this header:
TO: Decision maker indicated in case
FROM: Your Name
RE: Case title and/or key issue
DATE: Date submitted
The rest of the memo must be business format. Use the following structure to organize the content of your memo:
1) Introduction A (purpose & value):
Begin your memo in a way that makes its purpose and value clear to the recipient, and makes him or her want to read it. (Make this short—one sentence should usually suffice).
2) Introduction B (preview):
Next, immediately give a very short (1-2 sentences) summary of your primary recommendation or conclusion. Your recommendation must be up front! Your audience should know your position from the outset. It should be top of mind as they evaluate the support you provide for it in the body of the memo. You might want to consider underlining or boldfacing your recommendation to make it stand out.
3) Analysis and Support:
Proceed to the analysis requested in the assignment. Given the identity of the individual to whom you are writing the memo, you should assume that he or she knows everything that is in the case.
Do not repeat the facts from the case except as necessary to support your points. There should be a clear link between the information you include and your recommendation.
Include supporting exhibits you think the reader will find helpful in the appendix. These are not part of the one-page memo. But remember—the memo must stand on its own! Do not rely on your exhibits to make important points, because busy executives don’t always look at them.
Still, for important calculations you MUST include exhibits so we can verify your process.
Since these case discussions are intended to present dilemmas as they are encountered by managers, it is important to deal with the cases as you find them (i.e., no “Monday morning quarterbacking” based on knowledge of what happened after the time frame of the case). Please do not prepare for the cases by seeking out additional or more recent data on the firms or industries in the case.
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