Sample Reflective Essay | Reflective Essay Example

sample ereflective essay


This reflective essay is based on my learning and understanding of the module International Business Strategy. I will honestly reflect my understanding of topics like PEST Analysis, CAGE Framework, Transnational Innovation, VRIO Model to enlist a few. I will be also be discussing the relevant examples as per my understanding and will be touching my thought on how this course will help me in the future. 

Through the introductory lectures, I understood globalization and how it has increased the ‘connectedness’ of firms, markets, people, and information across borders. There is a mention of urbanization and its dangers which I understood as intensive urbanization can result in increased poverty, air pollution with heightened lead levels in city air, and a greater risk of flash flooding, among other things. I also learned something very new which was the difference between international and global strategies. An international strategy is a concept that entails putting together plans that are unique for the global market, whereas a global strategy is a concept that entails putting together plans that are unique for the global market (Rugman, 2001). Furthermore, I learned about green enterprises which according to my understanding is a company that has a minimal negative impact or has the potential to have a good influence on the global or local environment, community, society, or economy—a company that seeks to satisfy the triple bottom line (Čekanavičius, et al., 2014).

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I also learned about the business environment which as per my understanding includes consumers, competitors, stakeholders, suppliers, industry trends, regulations, other government actions, social and economic variables, and technical changes, and that it encompasses all those factors that affect a company’s operations. In addition, I got to know that the Porter Diamond model outlines the elements that might lead to a competitive edge for one country or economy over another. I understood the PEST Analysis (political, economic, social, and technological) with the help of relevant examples (Appendix 1). The CAGE Distance Framework, as per my understanding identifies cultural, administrative, geographic, and economic distinctions or distances between countries that businesses should consider when developing international strategy. It can also be used to decipher commerce, capital, and information trends (Tokas & Deb, 2020).

I also received basic knowledge of Yip’s Globalization Drivers from the lectures, though I didn’t understand it very well. I interpreted it as market drivers (common customer needs and tastes, the existence of global customers, and transferable marketing between different countries), cost drivers (scale economies, favourable logistics, and country-specific differences), and competitive drivers (competitors’ global strategies and country interdependence), will determine the pace of globalization (Yip, 1994). In addition, I comprehended that a blue ocean strategy is the pursuit of distinction and low cost at the same time in order to create new demand and open up new market space. It’s all about obtaining uncontested market space and obliterating competitors. It is based on the idea that market constraints and industry structure are not set in stone and may be changed by the actions and opinions of business actors. In addition, I got to know about entry barriers and how they assist established businesses by preserving their market share and ability to create revenues and profits. However, I still require a better understanding of Yip’s Globalization Drivers. I learned about core competencies or the resources and talents that make up a company’s strategic advantages. I understood that the VRIO framework forms the cornerstone for internal analysis in the week 4 session, when we went over the VRIO Model (Knott, 2015). VRIO stands for valuable, rare, inimitable, and organization (as in owned by the organization). Even though I got a brief idea about the VRIO Model after referring to several articles, I feel that I am not very confident about the same.

Business ethics, I believe, is a type of applied ethics or professional ethics that looks at ethical principles and moral or ethical issues that can occur in the workplace. It encompasses all areas of corporate behaviour and is critical to the organization’s success. Initially, I conflated the phrases shareholders and stakeholders. However, I now understand the distinction between the two. A shareholder is a person who holds shares in a public business, whereas a stakeholder is someone who is interested in the firm’s performance for reasons other than stock performance or gain. These characteristics often imply that the investor is more concerned with the company’s long-term success. A company’s Corporate Social Responsibility must be met in order for it to succeed (CSR). CSR is a type of international private corporate self-regulation that strives to contribute to society goals through ethically-oriented actions, according to what I learned.

I also learned about other topics like innovation and its repercussions, including disruptive innovation, local/central/transnational innovation, frugal innovation, and much more. This helped me distinguish between these two sorts of inventions, which at first appeared to be interchangeable. I discovered that encouraging the creation of Transnational Innovation Systems has demonstrable benefits for the countries and regions involved, which may be related to the expansion of consumer, labour, and factor markets, increased competitiveness, expanded division of labour, and higher specialisation (Chaminade & Nielsen, 2011). In addition, I learned that disruptive innovation refers to inventions and technologies that make expensive or complicated products and services more accessible and inexpensive to a larger market. It necessitates enabling technology, a cutting-edge business model, and a well-coordinated value network. Following that, I learned about Frugal Innovation, which is the process of decreasing the complexity and expense of a product and its manufacturing. In most cases, this refers to the removal of non-essential characteristics from a durable good, such as a car or phone, in order to sell it in underdeveloped countries. Furthermore, I understood that strategic alternatives are innovative, action-oriented solutions to the external environment that an organisation (or set of organisations) is confronted with.

An understanding of this module helped me learn about International Business Strategy and its advantages over time. ISB is of utmost importance because global exposure ensures a better grasp of various enterprises, markets, and cultures. The module has allowed me to comprehend how globalization has enhanced global connectedness. Moreover, this module helped me clear several doubts and confusions like the difference between stakeholders and shareholders, strategic stretch, types of innovation, etc. which will certainly come in handy in the long run. Additionally, I got to know about tools like PEST, CAGE, VRIO, etc; which helped me develop my analytical skills which I can use in the upcoming group activity and in my career.


Pearce, R., 2006. Globalisation and development: an international business strategy approach. Transnational Corporations15(1), p.39.

Advantage, C., 2020. Corporate Social Responsibility. CSR and Socially Responsible Investing Strategies in Transitioning and Emerging Economies65.

Rugman, A.M., 2001. The myth of global strategy. International Marketing Review.

Čekanavičius, L., Bazytė, R. and Dičmonaitė, A., 2014. Green business: challenges and practices. Ekonomika93(1), pp.74-88.

Chaminade, C. and Nielsen, H., 2011. Transnational innovation systems.

Grundy, T., 2006. Rethinking and reinventing Michael Porter’s five forces model. Strategic change15(5), pp.213-229.

Cavusgil, S.T., Knight, G.A. and Riesenberger, J.R., 2008. International business: Strategy, management, and the new realities. Pearson Prentice Hall.

Ho, J.K.K., 2014. Formulation of a systemic PEST analysis for strategic analysis. European academic research2(5), pp.6478-6492.

Knott, P.J., 2015. Does VRIO help managers evaluate a firm’s resources? Management Decision.

Tokas, K. and Deb, A.K., 2020. CAGE distance framework and bilateral trade flows: case of India. Management Research Review.

Verbeke, A., 2013. International business strategy. Cambridge University Press.

Weihrich, H., 1982. The TOWS matrix—A tool for situational analysis. Long range planning15(2), pp.54-66.

Yip, G.S., 1994. Industry drivers of global strategy and organization. The International Executive36(5), pp.529-556.


1. PESTEL Analysis Example:

Countries where legal procedures are slow, or where corruption is too high (For example, Libya, Pakistan, India, etc.) that it difficult for an honest company to survive do not fit under the legal parameter of the PESTEL analysis.
Similarly, a poor country might not be able to buy expensive products from Apple, and thus it does not make sense for the company to open an Apple store in such places. This is because the economic parameter of the PESTEL analysis is not favorable. 

2. Porter’s five forces:

The threat of new entry is less in the case of petroleum and natural gas companies like Saudi Aramco and Reliance Industries because it requires huge funds, government support, key suppliers, license, etc. which is hard to acquire for a new company.

3. Porter’s Five Forces graphical representation

Porters five forces graphical representation

Figure 1: Porter’s Five Forces graphical representation. Source: Self-created

4. Action Plan

Briefly describe the activity belowWhat worked wellWhat didn’t work wellHow would you approach this event next time?
1Learning from the moduleLearned a lot of new conceptsStill have many doubtsPeer discussion, class participation, etc.
2Group activityFinding group members through class discussionNot getting enough chance to meetFinding an appropriate time for a meeting suitable for everyone
3Group discussionHealthy discussion and learning from other’s knowledgeCommunication barrierFinding appropriate time for a meeting suitable for everyone
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