Selection of Cases

In this project, you will address a case study that intentionally does not give you enough detail for you to quickly resolve the issue. This is meant to enable you to use the processes of critical thinking to reach conclusions. Given the gaps in the information provided to you, you will identify what you know, what you don’t know, and what questions you need to ask as you start your investigation of the facts of the case. The process is designed to encourage clear thinking and to help you to identify potential cognitive traps that could derail well-reasoned conclusions.

Explanation of the Issue
Analysis of the Information
Consideration of alternative viewpoints and conclusions
Conclusions and Recommendations

Here are some tips for success:

Consider outside sources if they inform your case. However, stay on task.
Use APA style for “in text” and reference citations. At this point, your citations should be error-free.

Consider these Best Practices for a paper:

An effective introduction that grabs the reader’s attention and sets the tone and direction for the rest of the paper;
Supporting paragraphs that move the reader from the general introduction to the more specific aspects of your analysis;
Body paragraphs that provide support; and,
A conclusion that leads to a natural close to what you have presented in your paper.

Guidance for Selection of Cases and Topics

Key criteria in the selection will be what you can learn from the study that will help you understand the keys to successful, high-performing organizations as you continue on your journey toward your master’s degree. Here are some ideas to get your team thinking:


You could study high-performance/successful organizations such as Apple, Amazon, Starbucks, Costco, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Marriott, Southwest Airlines, FedEx,, Genentech, Intuit, USAA, NetApp, Cisco Systems, or


You could also select an organization that has successfully (or not so successfully) dealt with a particular crisis or issue such as:

  • The BP oil spill: British Petroleum’s fatal Deepwater Horizon explosion and resulting oil spill in 2010
  • HealthSouth, the largest inpatient health care provider in the United States was exposed as having widespread, fraudulent accounting practices in 2003, yet experienced a complete recovery
  • Johnson & Johnson Tylenol crisis, in 1982, when the company had to deal with several deaths related to consumption of its product, Tylenol
  • GM recall crisis, involving faulty ignition switches in millions of cars in 2014
  • Chipotle outbreak of E. coli resulting in shutdowns of many of its restaurants in 2015
  • Volkswagen exposed in 2015 as deliberately engineering cars to cheat on emissions testing
  • NFL’s “Deflategate” scandal in which scientific analysis bumps up against public perception
  • United Airlines’ image problem
  • Adobe abandons annual performance reviews in favor of more flexible ‘check-ins’
  • Silicon Valley’s diversity problem
  • Get other ideas or subscribe to a case study at Harvard Business Review.


This list should get your team started in selecting a case study and writing an eight-page white paper for management of your company. If you have another case in mind, get your instructor’s approval. Enjoy!


Last Updated on February 17, 2018

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