The TOM Challenge: TOM Winners and Losers Assignment

December 09, 2015

Read The Full Prompt

The basic thesis of the TOM course is that company performance is driven by the alignment between the company’s business model and operating model. As defined in the “Introduction to the RC TOM Course” note, a business model is defined as how the firm creates and captures value, and an operating model refers to the processes that transform a firm’s assets (e.g., capital, labor, intellectual property, equipment, etc.) into valuable actions.

Please identify one organization in the global economy that you think is highly effective (or one that is highly ineffective) at driving alignment between its operating and business models

  1. Did you choose the company as an example of effectiveness or ineffectiveness? Why?
  2. Describe the company’s business and operating models. What is interesting about them?
  3. Do the models align and support each other?  How?  What specific features of the operating model are designed to create and sustain competitive advantage?  What features of the business model leverage unique capabilities of its operating model?  What are the implications for performance?

Responses (930)

Celgene: A Winner in Biopharma
Last modified on December 10, 2015 at 12:02 am
Celgene has been one of the dominant biotech players in recent history. Its successful R&D and acquisitions have made the company a contender for the industry's pole position, and its growing commercialization capabilities have effectively utilized its assets to create [...]
Xiabu Xiabu – Unique Hot Pot Chain
Qing Chang
Last modified on December 9, 2015 at 11:30 pm
Ranked 2nd in the fast casual restaurant industry in China and capturing 52% market share within the fast casual hot pot segment, Xiabu Xiabu (XBXB) revamped the entire concept of traditional hot pot cuisine since 1998. It differentiates itself from [...]
Yoox: The Internet of Luxury
Posted on December 9, 2015 at 11:29 pm
At its heart, and in its own words, Yoox is a “global logistics structure that has been specifically customized for fashion e-commerce.” An analysis of how was able to take luxury fashion online, tailor its offering to dozens of [...]
ASOS: Leveraging Network Effects in High Street Fashion
Posted on December 9, 2015 at 11:29 pm
ASOS closely follows pop culture through social media and is obsessed with understanding their customers’ hobbies, Facebook “likes,” and daydreams. By tapping into their consumers’ digital world, they create value by quickly producing fashion that fits into both their everyday [...]
Expeditors International – Simply Synchronized
Posted on December 9, 2015 at 11:30 pm
Company Overview: A third-party logistics provider, Expeditors International of Washington is a global logistics company satisfying the increasingly sophisticated needs of international trade. The Company’s primary services include air and ocean freight transportation and customs brokerage. The Company also provides [...]
Ollie’s Bargain Outlet: Good Stuff Cheap!
Posted on December 9, 2015 at 11:29 pm
Company Overview: Ollie’s Bargain Outlet (“Ollie’s”) is a discount retailer offering brand name closeout merchandise through 202 stores across 17 states. The compelling value proposition Ollie’s offers consumers of “Good Stuff Cheap®” is directly a function of their ability to [...]
Sweetgreen: Live the Sweetlife
Posted on December 9, 2015 at 11:30 pm
Sweetgreen: a Winner Despite its young owners, Sweetgreen has developed a strong alignment between its operating and business models [1]. Started in 2007 by three Georgetown college graduates, Sweetgreen is a fast-casual restaurant that serves farm-to-table salads and wraps [1, [...]