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    Evaluate each of the following approaches that a business firm could use to gather information about competition

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    Evaluate each of the following approaches that a business firm could use to gather information about competition. For each approach, mark your feeling about its appropriateness using the following scale:

    1. Definitely not appropriate, 2. Probably not appropriate, 3. Undecided, 4. Probably appropriate, and 5. Definitely appropriate
    The business firm should try to get useful information about competitors by:
    _____ Careful study of trade journals
    _____ Wiretapping the telephones of competitors
    _____ Posing as a potential customer to competitors
    _____ Getting loyal customers to put out a phone "request for proposal" soliciting competitors' bids
    _____ Buying competitors' products and taking them apart
    _____ Hiring management consultants who have worked for competitors
    _____ Rewarding competitors' employees for useful "tips"
    _____ Questioning competitors' customers and/or suppliers
    _____ Buying and analyzing competitors' garbage
    _____ Advertising and interviewing for nonexistent jobs
    _____ Taking public tours of competitors' facilities
    _____ Releasing false information about the company in order to confuse competitors.
    _____ Questioning competitors' technical people at trade shows and conferences
    _____ Hiring key people away from competitors
    _____ Analyzing competitors' labor union contracts
    _____ Having employees date persons who work for competitors
    _____ Studying aerial photographs of competitors' facilities

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    Solution Preview

    Please see below for my thoughts. Make sure to put these in your own words and/or change based on your thoughts/feelings, but at least this will get you started.

    Thanks for letting me help! Robin Argo, MBA OTA 103330
    -------------------

    The business firm should try to get useful information about competitors by:
    ___4__ Careful study of trade journals: Using trade journals to find out about competitors would be felt appropriate by society. I think it would give great information that is factual but some of the information that I may want may not be found in trade journals (like new technology or products that are not being reported on yet).
    ___1__ Wiretapping the telephones of competitors: First of all, I think wiretapping would be illegal. But even if it is not, it is morally and ethically wrong and anything that you found out from wiretapping would be classified as stealing.
    ___2__ Posing as a potential customer to competitors: This could also be morally questionable. While it may be very fruitful, it would be looked at by some to be misleading and a form of stealing and lying.
    ___3__ Getting loyal customers to put out a phone "request for proposal" soliciting competitors' ...

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