After clearing my CIMA strategic level in 2019, I have been writing and correcting CIMA SCS and ACCA SBL mocks for the last two years. This advice may apply to other papers as well. You may be given a question on one or more strategic options and asked to comment on the opportunities and risks on the same. To have a balanced approach, remember these 3 points, and you can’t go wrong:
Think of all the options possible
- I recently corrected a mock, where the question was to advise on the adverse outcomes of a company press release. The immediate reaction of every student would be only to write all the possible negative points that come to mind. But do remember to mention in your conclusion to this sub-task that there could be minimal to no negative impact also. That is very much a plausible outcome, yet preparing for the worst is the prudent thing to do.
- When offering suggestions on what to do in a particular situation, many students forget the option of ‘doing nothing‘ and letting the case sort itself out. There may be instances where this approach may be recommended.
- On specific projects, apart from choosing to go ahead with the project or not, sometimes, delaying the project, looking at the cash flows and dynamic environment could seem a good option. Some, in short, think holistically, and not just the obvious! This is what makes you stand out compared to the other students.
- When choosing to invest in a strategic option, timing is also essential. Are we blocking funds in an option that could soon be obsolete? Should we wait as we see more lucrative opportunities just around the corner? It would be worth considering this as well.
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