Easter Week!

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Didn’t we just enjoy Spring Break?  Don’t look now, but I think we’re about to experience another break!  :)

Because of the Easter holiday, we’ll only meet once this week. We’ll wrap up our review of the Investment Value section, and we’ll discuss the third project submission.

For our advance reading assignment on Tuesday, please review the financial ratio and balanced scorecard reading assignments that were originally assigned for last week’s classes. Then please review the Project 3 requirements, which are accessible via the pull-down menu near the top of this blog page.

Incidentally, Project 3 will be due on Wednesday, April 8th at 11:59 pm. But before we start to worry about that deadline, let’s enjoy Easter first!

Investment Value

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Even though there are two inches of freshly fallen snow on my front lawn, it’s Spring Time! And that means that we’re ready to start pulling together the components of the planning process in order to develop and present our recommendations.

To prepare for our Tuesday session, please review a pair of slide sets in our blog’s Virtual Library. One is entitled Transaction Analysis.pdf, and the other is entitled Financial Ratios.pdf.

Then, in advance of Thursday’s session, please review a quantitative balanced scorecard for a regional airline.

So if we complete our assessment of Investment Value this week, can we wrap up our review of the planning process and forget about the remainder of the semester?

Umm … not quite! There are still a few exciting tasks to complete, such as finalizing the due dates of our term project, which we’ll also discuss this week.

Nevertheless, once we complete our review of Investment Value, we’ll be gettin’ close!  :)

Revenue (Conclusion)

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I hope that you’re still enjoying Spring Break! But believe it or not, it’s time to start thinking about our next class again.  :(

This week, we’ll conclude our review of the Revenue section of our analysis. First, on Tuesday, we’ll return to our discussion of the way in which our development of “standard prices” is based on internal cost data. And then, on Thursday, we’ll conclude with a follow-up discussion of the way in which our development of “special prices” encompasses considerations that go well beyond internal cost data.

To prepare for our session on Tuesday, please read a relatively simple Wikipedia web page about the break-even point. For many of us, Tuesday will be our first day back in class, so we don’t want to go overboard with our advance reading assignments!

And then, to prepare for our session on Thursday, please read a somewhat more complex web page about transfer pricing and the arm’s length principle. In addition, please take note of the publisher of that content.

By the end of this week, we’ll also begin to discuss our Project 3 assignment. But hey, let’s not worry about that until we’re back from Spring Break and “settled in” for your final few weeks as a PC student!

Spring Break!

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We only have one assignment for you this week …

… enjoy Spring Break! :)


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This week, we’ll proceed to the revenue section of our course. And as you know, we’ll complete the second stage of our term project as well.

To prepare for our conversation on Tuesday, please read a light blog posting about game theory and a more quantitatively intense posting on the subject. Although these writings do not explicitly address pricing strategy per se, they’ll provide some helpful background information about the competitive gaming aspects of pricing strategy.

Both postings discuss the Batman film entitled The Dark Knight. It featured Heath Ledger as the Joker, a role which earned him a posthumous Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor that year.

Then, to prepare for Thursday, please read a brief introductory article about various pricing methods. They will help us apply the principles of game theory to pricing decisions.

Our sole remaining task is the second submission of our term project. By Thursday evening, February 5th at 11:59 pm, please create a Box Note (i.e. a secure corporate version of an email message) and save it in your online project folder. The document should save itself when you close the Box Note file.

As we discussed in class, you are welcome to embed hyperlinks and images in your Box Note, as you would in any email message. And you are also welcome to upload email attachments to your folder.

On Friday morning, as always, I will respond by placing a new Box Note in your online folder to acknowledge your submission. Please check for it, and let me  know if anything is lost in cyberspace.

And after that … enjoy Spring Break!


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And now it’s time to proceed to the third section of the business analysis process. We’ve assessed the business model and established volume projections, and so we’ll begin our discussion of cost considerations.

On Tuesday, we’ll discuss the related topics of Activity Based Costing (ABC) and Activity Based Management (ABM).  Then, on Thursday, we’ll review the topics of job order costing and variance analysis.

In advance of our Tuesday class, please review an investigatory news story about McDonald’s and a written and video response to the allegations. On that second web page, i.e. the one with the response, please watch the 2 minute video after you read the content.

Then, in advance of our Thursday class, please review a pair of blog postings about job order costing and variance analysis.

Some time this week, we’ll discuss Term Project #2’s deadline as well. We’ve actually already covered the relevant material, so it’s simply a matter of selecting a convenient time.

Hey … who just whispered never?  I heard that!  :)

Volume (Continued)

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Thank you for completing our first project assignment! Hey, wouldn’t it be nice if every assignment consisted of a text message of 50 words?

Yesterday morning, I acknowledged my receipt of your messages by placing Box Notes in your online folders. And I’ll be providing feedback to you with follow-up Box Notes before we meet on Tuesday.

So what’s up for Tuesday? After our customary quiz, we’ll begin our session with a discussion of our Project 1 experience. And then we’ll cover a little calculus!

Thus, in advance of our Tuesday session, please go to our Virtual Library and review a PDF file entitled Sales Optimization. Although I do not expect you to work through all of the calculus formulas (in that file) in advance of our session, I do ask that you review the general purpose and structure of that analysis.

Then, in advance of our Thursday session, please read a relatively brief web page with a bullet point outline about quality management. We’ll spend much of that day in a discussion of quality management as a discipline that pulls together ostensibly disparate volume-related analyses like storyboard flowcharts and calculus analyses.

And then … guess what? We’ll conclude our second module of the semester! And we’ll be “right on track” to complete our third (of six) modules before our mid-semester Spring Break.

In other words … we’re making progress. :)

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