Questions asked during Webinars conducted by Prof David Sharp
  • Can I include leadership theories into the case and weave the study around the most outstanding one?
    The theories are better contained in separate readings in more depth. However, if a decision-maker was reviewing alternative theories, then they could briefly be included.
  • Can I highlight the achievements of the company in the case? What should be written if I am writing the case about the success of a company in the small sector?
    You should write a case about a decision that a manager is making. If you need to provide the successful history as background for that decision, you could then highlight the company’s achievements. But this should not be the focus of the case. That should always be a decision.
  • Can a finance case be built on a hypothetical situation with a decision to be made?
    Yes, but the case would not qualify for the competition if you did.
  • I was working on a case and the company was sold to another. From which company should I now seek the consent? Is disguising the company a good idea?
    This situation is a big problem. You should get permission from the new owners of the company, who are unlikely to give it if they have no connection with the case authors. Therefore, total disguise really is the only solution. But then the case would not qualify for the competition.
  • Can I use statistical tools to analyse a case study?
    Certainly, especially if that is the pedagogical purpose. Even if it is not, but the students are expected to know the technique, it can be called for in the decision and used in the analysis. Alternatively, a case could provide the results of the statistical analysis and students could be asked to use this to make a decision.
  • If I do not glorify a decision maker, then how do I write cases on leadership?
    The focus of the case should be on the decision that the leader made, and not on how well he made the decision. If the case includes his/her decision, what is then there to debate in class?
  • Should I have photographs and other material to support the material written?
    Yes, you can use photographs. But remember that the cases are printed in black and white; therefore we prefer black and white pictures.
  • Is story telling or narrative approach acceptable for a case?
    The difficulty with a story is that it is harder to write a decision to be taken at the end of the case. Some element of story-telling is naturally part of the case, but the central part of a good case that will work well in the classroom needs to be a decision.
  • What is an “arm chair” case? Which decision frame cut should I use?
    An “armchair” case is fictitious and is written from the author’s experience. An author can make it anything she or he likes. Such cases are not eligible for the competition, but can often be useful in a class, especially a more introductory one. We do use them in accounting quite successfully, though they are better used in moderation!
  • What are preparation and discussion questions? Should these be from within the case or outside the case?
    Preparation questions are what the students need to answer before coming to class, so they are better able to take part in the discussion. They should address issues around identification of alternatives and (possibly partial) calculations necessary to make the decision. Discussion questions are those that lead the class discussion, and are designed to direct the discussion in a particular direction that you want.
  • Without using primary data, can I use the name of the company in a case based on secondary data collected through press media?
    Yes, but such cases will not be eligible for the competition.
  • What if the organization mentioned in the case is not very famous? Does that reduce the credibility of the case, by any chance?
    If the company is not a well-known one, the marketability of the case is affected. More people will use a case if it is about a well-known company.
  • Can I write a case on my own experience, say in an organisation or in a society?
    Yes, that is called an “armchair” case. But it does not qualify for the competition.
  • When a case is written on a company, the data and information is shared by the company. In such a scenario, is it necessary to cite references? If yes, what do we cite as a reference?
    If you are providing information provided by the contact, then it does not need to be referenced. But exhibits would need to be cited as “Source: Company information” or similar if internally sourced.
  • Do I need the company's consent when the case is a disguised one?
    You are required to submit the company’s signed and stamped consent form for  disguised cases.  Such disguised cases, can be submitted to   the competition.