This introduction is intended to provide students with some basic information about the case method, and guidelines about what they must do to gain the maximum benefit from the method. We begin by taking a brief look at what case studies are, and how they are used in the classroom. Then we discuss what the student needs to do to prepare for a class, and what she can expect during the case discussion. We also explain how student performance is evaluated in a case study based course. Finally, we describe the benefits a student of management can expect to gain through the use of the case method.
There is no universally accepted definition for a case study, and the case method means different things to different people. Consequently, all case studies are not structured similarly, and variations abound in terms of style, structure and approach. Case material ranges from small caselets (a few paragraphs to one-two pages) to short cases (four to six pages) and from 10 to 18 page case studies to the longer versions (25 pages and above). A case is usually a “description of an actual situation, commonly involving a decision, a challenge, an opportunity, a problem or an issue faced by a person or persons in an organization. 1 In learning with case studies, the student must deal with the situation described in the case, in the role of the manager or decision maker facing the situation. An important point to be emphasized here is that a case is not a problem. A problem usually has a unique, correct solution. On the other hand, a decision-maker faced with the situation described in a case can choose between several alternative courses of action, and each of these alternatives may plausibly be supported by logical argument.
To put it simply, there is no unique, correct answer in the case study method. The case study method usually involves three stages: individual preparation, small group discussion, and large group or class discussion. While both the instructor and the student start with the same information, their roles are clearly different in each of these stages, as shown in Table 1. 1 Michiel R. Leeenders, Louise A. Mauffette-Launders and James Erskine, Writing Cases, (Ivey Publishing, 4th edition) 3. l Learning with Cases Table 1 Teacher and Student Roles in a Regular Case Class
When Before Class Teacher Assigns case and often readings Prepares for class May consult colleagues During Class After Class Deals with readings Leads case discussion Evaluates and records student participation Evaluates materials and updates teaching note Student or Participant Receives case and assignment Prepares individually Discusses case in small group Raises questions regarding readings Participates in discussion Compares personal analysis with colleagues’ analysis. Reviews class discussion for major concepts learned. Source: Michiel R.
If the stick had the picture of a motorbike, the consumer was entitled to the second prize, a TVS motorbike. If the print portrayed a camera, the customer was entitled to the third prize, a Canon camera. The picture of an ice candy stick won the consumer, the consolation prize of a Feast Jaljeera Blast (actual jaljeera drink, in the form of an ice candy). In 2002, HLL launched an innovative, aggressive and the first of its kind promotional campaign called ‘Ek Din Ka Raja’ (EDKR). Unlike the previous product specific campaigns, EDKR covered the entire range of ice creams. Running from March 2002 to May 2002, EDKR was the biggest ever promotional campaign for Kwality Wall’s.
The contest was awarded the ‘Best Promotion Campaign in India’ award at the Promotion Marketing Awards of Asia (PMAA) in Singapore. The promotion also won two more awards in Asia – a Silver for the ‘Best Idea or Concept’ and a Bronze for the ‘Best use of Direct Marketing’ out of 97 short listed entries from Singapore, India, 38 Unilever in India: Building the Ice Cream Business Philippines, China, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand and Korea. 16 The total number of redemptions was close to a million, with each consumer spending a minimum of Rs. 100 to Rs. 125 per redemption. The EDKR contest entitled up to 10 lucky consumers to spend Rs 10 lakhs in a day’s shopping with their family in Mumbai. They