This year GHRA (including Eva Verghese (president of GHRA) and some of the MLHR faculty) worked really hard to put together the first MLHR Case Competition at Fisher. For our first year, there were eight AMAZING teams who were all trying to solve a “real-life” HR issue for Whirlpool. I was really worried about trying to solve a real-world HR issue as a first year because we haven’t had that many classes specifically for HR, yet. The great thing about the case competition was we had to work in teams of four, which had to include at least one first year and at least one second year, to make things a little more even. Here are some of my favorite things about the case competition:
1. Spending “quality time” with my friends who are 2nd years. I was fortunate enough to be on a team with 2nd years I’ve been friends with pretty much since school started. I’m 99.9% sure we learned a lot about each other in the 36 hours we spent together in Gerlach 250. We never really got at each other’s throats and we all pretty much knew how each other operated. Plus, everyone had fun and a good attitude (for the most part). It helps when you’re known as “the party team.”
2. Getting “face time” with executives from Whirlpool, Tween Brands and Children’s Highlights. We had to present in front of top executives from these companies, so the experience was great. In today’s business world, young people have to be prepared to present their ideas or even their internship projects to top executives.
3. Panera boxed lunches. Two words: Sierra Turkey. Cassie and I bonded over our new found love of the Sierra Turkey. They are served in these fun boxes with a sandwich, chips and a cookie. The best part is looking under the sandwich to see what cookie you’ve gotten. My team and I traded bites of each other’s to “test” all of them.
4. Seeing what Gerlach looks like at 2:30am. It is pretty darn quiet in Gerlach in the wee hours of a Saturday morning. It is very quiet at this time, but the restrooms are very clean and you can swipe in to the rooms that have projectors in there to practice your presentation.
5. Feedback from the judges after the presentations. Our team didn’t “win” so it scary going into a room of executives and hearing why they didn’t pick you to move on, but they were really nice about it and seemed genuinely eager to help us try to improve for another time. I know I learned a lot about how to improve my presentation skills and that I need to get over the nervousness that comes over me when I present something.
I definitely want to participate again next year. Hopefully I can convince my other team members to re-enroll as MLHR students for Winter Quarter, so they can participate as well. If I do it again next year, I will miss them terribly. Overall, it was a great success and I’m so happy to have been able to participate!
If we look tired, we are. 1-3 hours of sleep = very sleepy team.