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“We may see something but if we fail to notice, we are essentially blind..”: A study of what methods companies use when analysing the surrounding world
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Umeå School of Business.
2007 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]


The conditions on the market are rapidly changing and businesses in Sweden need to seize signals of change in time, in order to have a strong market position. The ability to make the right decisions and react in time is vital due to the increasing competition and a mistake can have devastating consequences for a company. The aim of this thesis is to investigate what tools and methods businesses use to analyse the surrounding world, which has lead to following research question:

How do businesses analyse the surrounding and predict trends and what factors in the society should a company be attentive to while performing an analysis?

Analyses of the surrounding heritage from a term called Business Intelligence, which consist of internal and external factors. This thesis focuses of analyses of external factors, in other words the surrounding. These external aspects enrich the understanding of the internal factors and together they are the foundation that strategic planning originates from. An analysis can be performed in many different ways for instance with collaborations with consultants or by observing the society. A World Mapping method can be used to chart trends or important changes and a company can also try to identify unpredicted events by using the factor X-model. Theories by Bengt Wahlström have also been used in the study to display how trends can be analysed.

This study will analyse large food producers who have established brands on the Swedish market. A qualitative approach has been conducted where six food supplier companies and three consultant companies specialised in analysing the surrounding have been interviewed. The method has been deductive where the empirical findings has been analysed with the theoretical framework. The outcome of the research shows that collaborations with consultants is a commonly used instrument and practical methods such as scenario planning and in real life scanning are preferred as visualising factors simplifies the managing of them. Media plays a significant role, both as a tool to search and track trends but also as a tool that can increase the affect of trends and unforeseen occurrences.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Handelshögskolan vid Umeå universitet , 2007. , 74 p.
Keyword [en]
Business Intelligence, Trends, Food, Blind Spots, Consultants, Forecasting
National Category
Business Administration
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-1174OAI: diva2:140443
Available from: 2007-06-11 Created: 2007-06-11Bibliographically approved

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