TOWS matrix and portfolio analysis


Create a 3–5-page draft for a strategic plan for your selected organization using a TOWS matrix and portfolio analysis in addition to any other appropriate tool of your choosing.

Note: The assessments in this course are presented in sequence and must be completed in order.

The TOWS Matrix is a decision-making process for developing strategic alternatives. You will be able to better develop a more effective strategic plan based upon an in-depth understand of the current environment.

By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies and assessment criteria:

  • Competency 1: Analyze organizational structure, design, culture, and climate in relation to environmental forces. ◦Apply methodologies from the knowledge-economy management approach appropriately to the organization.

◦Integrate recent research into a strategic management plan.

  • Competency 2: Develop a strategic organizational plan that provides human and financial resources to support targeted organizational outcomes. ◦Synthesize operational and financial components into a strategic planning process.

◦Analyze strategy in relation to achieving competitive advantage.

  • Competency 3: Recommend an organizational structure and design to optimize a strategic plan. ◦Recommend an alternative organizational structure model that aligns with organizational goals.



Development of strategies involves awareness of the environment, intellectual curiosity, and a willingness to be open to creative ideas and solutions.

The Assessment 2 Context document contains important information about the following topics related to Adaptive and Market Entry strategies:

  • The TOWS Matrix.
  • Service/Product Life Cycle.
  • Product (or service) Development Process.
  • Strategy Implementation & Organizational Culture.
  • When Cultures Need Changing.



Questions to Consider

To deepen your understanding, you are encouraged to consider the questions below and discuss them with a fellow learner, a work associate, an interested friend, or a member of the business community.


Required Resources (Attached)

The following resources are required to complete the assessment.

Click the links provided below to view the following multimedia pieces:

  • Riverbend City: Ruby Lake Evacuation Mission | Transcript.
  • TOWS Matrix


Suggested Resources


The following optional resources are provided to support you in completing the assessment or to provide a helpful context. For additional resources, refer to the Research Resources and Supplemental Resources in the left navigation menu of your courseroom.


Library Resources


The following e-books or articles from the Capella University Library are linked directly in this course:

  • Ginter, P. M., Duncan, W. J., & Swayne, L. E. (2013). Strategic management of health care organizations (7th ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. ◦Chapter 7, “Evaluation of Alternatives and Strategic Choice,” pages 255–304.

◦Chapter 8, “Value-Adding Service Delivery Strategies,” pages 307–341.


  • Littlejohns, P., Sharma, T., & Jeong, K. (2012). Social values and health priority setting in England: “Values”-based decision making. Journal of Health Organization and Management, 26(3), 363–373.


Assessment Instructions

Note: Assessment 1, Current Environmental Analysis, must be completed before beginning this assessment. You will be revisiting and revising strategies throughout each of the assessments in this course. Each assessment builds on your previous work.


Step One: Critical Thinking Skills Practice

The TOWS Matrix is a decision-making process for developing strategic alternatives. Your ability to think critically is key to organizing your thoughts throughout the strategic planning process.

In preparation for this assessment, you are required to view the Riverbend City: Ruby Lake Evacuation Mission simulation (linked in the Resources). This activity is an ideal setting to practice thoughtful application of critical thinking skills. This media piece addresses multiple competencies, some of which are difficult to practice and assess without a real world or a simulated setting. As you begin your TOWS matrix, keep the following categories of critical thought in mind as you consider the threats, opportunities, strengths, and weaknesses of the Ruby Lake Evacuation scenario.

  • Assumptions: What assumptions are being taking for granted by the people in this simulation? What alternative assumptions could be useful in this situation?
  • Information: What information did people have and what kind of information were they missing?
  • Fairness: How was intellectual and intercultural fairness demonstrated?
  • Criteria for Evaluation: What criteria would you use to evaluate the quality of the information, implementation and/or effectiveness?

Complete a practice TOWS Matrix for this scenario before proceeding to Step Two. This practice matrix does not need to be submitted.


Step Two: Complete a TOWS Matrix

Apply the same critical thought process to a real world setting that is relevant for your selected health care organization’s future success. In addition to completing a TOWS matrix, you may use any other appropriate analysis tools to determine alternative strategies.

Include the following as you develop alternative strategies:

  • Incorporate the use of new methodologies from the knowledge-economy management approach that might be appropriate for this organization.
  • Correlate recent research findings regarding strategy management into your approach.
  • Synthesize operational and financial components in your strategic planning process.
  • Incorporate your findings from your current environment analysis.
  • Determine the organizational structure that best facilitates the strategy—functional, divisional, or matrix.


Step Three: Draft Strategic Plan

Re-examine your work from Assessment 1 and create a high level draft of a strategic plan that incorporates insights from your environmental analysis and the TOWS matrix exercise.The goal is to focus upon application of the concepts and new insight. Keep it brief and substantive.

Preface your draft with the core assumptions regarding environmental opportunities and threats, organizational strengths and weaknesses, and organizational behavior dynamics that are foundational to the strategy.

Include a brief description of the proposed strategy that reflects the choices made regarding:

  • Service/product domain.
  • Market domain.
  • Level of investment in the respective service/product and market domains.
  • Positioning approach for achieving competitive advantage.
  • Maneuvers that will be used to implement the positioning approach.
  • Distinctive competencies or assets that will be relied on to gain and sustain competitive advantage.


Additional Requirements

Submit your selected health organization’s TOWS Matrix from Step Two, with the high-level components of a strategic plan, as an attachment to this assessment.

  • Length: 3–5 double-spaced, typed pages. Note: Feel free to construct images/diagrams to summarize information where appropriate (for example, TOWS matrix…).
  • APA formatting: Resources and citations are formatted according to current APA style and formatting.
  • Resources: Use evidence from the literature to support your recommendations.


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