Critical Thinking in Action

While you are playing the role of a new leader in an organization, remember that you are also writing a paper that will be evaluated by an instructor. Thus, you want to make it easy for the instructor to clearly see that you have demonstrated the outcomes of the assignment. Don’t make your instructor search for information; guide them to it. How? By double-checking the scoring guide and ensuring that you have clearly demonstrated each of these competencies at what you believe is the “distinguished” level.

Read the following and think about how Panera used critical thinking and an understanding of VUCA to solve its “mosh pit” problem.

Jargon, J. (2017, June 2). How Panera solved its “mosh pit” problem. Retrieved from

Then, find another company with a problem they need to fix. You may use NASA, BP, or United Airlines, all of whom have had numerous high profile problems to solve in recent years, if you wish. Or, you may choose a company that you know has an issue. If you are unsure who to use, try searching “Companies with customer service problems” online and you will get a lot of ideas, though your problem doesn’t have to be about customer service.

Write an APA-formatted (double-spaced, indented) paper that does the following:

Summarize the problem you researched. Then, apply Kallet’s critical thinking framework to describe how the leadership of this company should think through the problem to create a solution. Next, describe what VUCA considerations the leadership must keep in mind as they implement this solution.
Work on being concise but thorough, keeping your academically formatted paper to no more than 4 double-spaced pages.
Your paper should include, and be organized, as follows:

Introduction: Write an introduction that tells the reader what to expect of this paper (1 paragraph). It would be most effective to include a brief mention that leaders at Panera bread effectively used an understanding of critical thinking and VUCA to solve their “mosh pit” problem, and that this paper applies a similar framework to solving whatever problem in the organization that you chose. Choose an organization with a problem that you can research.

Problem: Describe the problem that you will be solving for another company, describing the situation (13 paragraphs).

Thinking Critically: Apply the framework for critical thinking as outlined by Michael Kallet in Think Smarter to the problem you identified. Describe Kallets clarity concept and apply this to the problem, along with other aspects of Kallets model as is appropriate. Describe how critical thinking can be used to understand, and resolve, the problem. If applicable, you can explain how the company already solved this problem, and how critical thinking was applied (24 paragraphs).

Applying VUCA: Explain how VUCA could affect the situation. Specifically apply each aspect of VUCAvolatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguityapplies to this problem and must be considered in any solutions. (24 paragraphs)

Conclusion: Write a conclusion that wraps up and summarizes your document (1 paragraph). The Capella Writing Center, which you can reach by clicking MBA Program Resources, then Writing, has good information on how to write an effective conclusion.

References: Include at least 2 APA-formatted citations in your paper.

Write a 24 page academic paper following APA style and formatting. Refer to the writing resources in the MBA Program Resources in Tools and Resources, especially paying attention to the MBA Academic and Professional Document Guidelines, under Writing Resources.

NOTE: You MUST organize this paper (and all papers in your MBA program) with headings. Any paper submitted without headings will be returned, ungraded, for revision and points will be deducted.

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