Evaluation of Microsoft’s organisational culture and leadership to generate recommendations for future success


An essay of 2400 words made up of two parts (100% of the mark)

Essay (2400 words – you can use appendices but no 10% leeway allowed)

Choose three topics covered in the module (e.g. perception, teamwork, culture, misbehaviour/ resistance, leadership, change, motivation). Critically review academic sources on your chosen topics and identify relevant theories, concepts and findings from available academic research which you will later use to analyse your chosen company.

You can decide to use one or two topics as your main focus, and supplement them with sources on the third topic, or devote an equal amount of space to each of the topics. 

Analyse a company of your choice (so your case study company) using the relevant theories, concepts and findings from your review of the academic research. Draw conclusions from your analysis or give relevant, well supported, practical and future-oriented recommendations for the chosen company.

The assignment should consist of two parts:

Part 1. Review of relevant academic sources

Briefly introduce your focus.

Critically review relevant academic sources on the selected three topics. Focus on sources which will help you in the analysis of your chosen case study company.

 (1100 words)

Part 2. Case study analysis and conclusions/ recommendations

i. Briefly introduce the company you have chosen as your case study using a variety of data coming from a range of sources that need to be clearly and accurately cited and referenced in your assignment (approximately 100 words)

ii. Analyse the company you have chosen as your case study using the academic sources you reviewed in Part 1. Your case study data should also be clearly cited here and come from a range of sources. (approximately 900 words)

iii. Based on your analysis, provide relevant conclusions and well supported, practical and future-orientated recommendations for the chosen company.  (approximately 300 words)

(1300 words)

Please note: Case study analysis submitted as part of assessment on a different module or discussed in detail in a different module generally should not be used for this module. Please, consult the module leader, if needed.

You can work in groups of up to 4 students in order to jointly gather data on the same case study. However, if you choose to do so, the written assignment needs to be the product of your individual work.

Presenting coursework for assessment

Your assignment must be presented in the following format:

  • It must be word-processed in 12 point Arial font and double-spaced
  • It must be black text on a white or ivory background
  • All pages must be numbered
  • Margins must be as follows: Top: 1 inch, Bottom: 1 inch (2.5 cm), Left: 1.25 inches, Right: 1.25 inches (3.2 cm)
  • It should not contain your name(s)

Assignment length

The length of an assignment is limited by a set number of words to contribute towards the development of writing skills and to ensure all work is assessed equitably. We therefore require you to complete your assignments within the number of words specified in the assignment brief. 

The specified word count refers to the main body of the report and does not include front cover, title page, contents page, reference list, or appendices.  The word count does include headings, tables and in-text citations but not diagrams.

Appendices themselves will not be marked. However, they may provide some useful information. Inappropriate use of appendices will be taken into consideration when awarding the final mark.

Words that exceed the maximum allowed will not be marked. If in doubt, you should discuss this with the Module Leader before submission.


Your assignment on this module will be submitted through Turnitin. Turnitin is a web-based tool that supports the development of good academic practice when preparing written work for assessment. This text-matching tool allows academic staff to check assignments for improper use of sources or potential plagiarism by comparing it against continuously up-dated databases (including web-pages and other student work)

The new Turnitin policy effective from September 2020 can be found via this link. You are expected to be familiar with it.


Guidance to help with interpretation and use of Turnitin is provided here:


Submission date and instructions

Your work must be uploaded to the dropbox in Moodle by 13 hours on the 9th of December 2020 via Turnitin.

Give the file(s) which you intend to upload a name which begins with your student number followed by your chosen topics and case study company.  For example ‘12345678 Teamwork, culture and leadership ay IKEA

For students who are registered with the Dyslexia/SpLD Service, any submission through Moodle and Turnitin will trigger a notification of a Blue Card and there is no action required by a student.

Please ensure you submit your assignment no later than the deadline set above (these are fixed deadlines but students may exceptionally secure a 24 hour grace period if last minute untoward circumstances affect your ability to submit on time). Please see your Programme Handbook for more details.  Please note the use of this grace period is monitored and restrictions in place for overuse.

If you have extensions as part of an Inclusive Support Plan (ISP), you can submit your work one, two or three weeks later in line with your ISP allowance.’

Marking and moderation of your work

Following internal moderation, a sample of work is reviewed by the External Examiner for the programme to ensure that the standards applied are comparable to those at other institutions. To read how your work is moderated please go to your programme handbook for details.


Feedback on your work will be provided in a range of ways at various times throughout this module, and different feedback will serve slightly different purposes. Feedback is designed to support your learning and help you to improve subsequent work, so you need to engage and get the most out of the feedback provided.

Please note that feedback is provided throughout the module not just on formal tasks It will be provided on your work and contribution in class, on the formal assessment tasks and, in some circumstances, during staff office hours.

If you would like further information about feedback, or how to use it, please talk to your tutor on this module or your Academic Adviser or Programme Lead

Please note that all marks are provisional until they are ratified by an Examination Committee.

Assessment criteria

Each assessment will be graded using the following criteria:

1.         Demonstrated understanding of the chosen topics 30%

•           Evidence of understanding of the core literature on the chosen topics

Using a wide range of relevant and suitable academic sources

•           Evidence of wider reading on the chosen topics

2.         Analysis/Evaluation 50%

•           Analysis that addresses interrelated aspects of chosen topics

•           Relevant data analysed, making appropriate use and demonstrating an understanding of relevant theory, models, frameworks and insights from academic research

•           Critical evaluation and independent thinking demonstrated in logical conclusions and practical, well-supported recommendations

3.         Coherence and referencing 20%

•           Organisation and structure of the argument

•           Clarity of expression of your ideas

•           The accuracy of referencing

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