My first case competition: Swiffer, anyone?

I am still deciding on my MBA concentration. So far, marketing looks like my favorite one. With an IT background, it is hard to build up a resume showing marketing experience. I assume many of us are in the same situation, so I would suggest to use the opportunities offered at Fisher.  This week I participated in my first case competition: P&G Case Competition. It was a two day event, 9 teams ready to give their best. Big was my surprise when the case was about a product called Swiffer. This is one of the curious facts about being an international student: some popular products in the U.S may be completely unknown to you. So I had never heard about Swiffer or even tried one. It is a cleaning product that is very successful in the U.S and “created” a whole new category of products. The challenge: Prepare a case and presentation with recommendations to increase the sales of Swiffer up to 2 billion dollars by 2020 (increasing market penetration and loyalty).

First, the P&G staff presented the case and shared with us some important facts about Swiffer. Immediately,  we had to meet with our teams during 4 hours and prepare the presentation. The next day each team presented the case to a jury of top Fisher professors and P&G brand managers.  The case competition required hard work but it was also a lot of fun. I think all the teams did a great job, amazing ideas were presented, and you can tell everyone was very passionate. I really feel the experience helped me a lot in understanding what a marketing career is about. In addition, I had the chance to practice my speech, teamwork and creative side. My team did not win but I feel very proud of our work. Congratulations to the winning team!

This was my first case competition, and I enjoyed it. In January will be the internal Fisher Case Competition – if you’re a current MBA student, I highly recommend you participate!

Fisher goes to NSHMBA

A couple of weeks ago some classmates and I had the opportunity to attend the National Society of Hispanic MBA Conference & Career Expo, thanks to the Fisher Latino Association. Just a month after starting the MBA program, I was already in touch with over a hundred companies who value diversity and were looking for candidates for possible full time jobs and internships. The conference & career expo was a two-day event in Anaheim, California.  It was a great experience to practice networking, discuss your resume and goals. This event also gave me the evidence of why may I need at least two versions of my resume according to the type of company I am looking for. I made some connections that hopefully would help me in the future. At the conference, we had great support from Fisher alumni who gave us advice and tips on how to succeed in the job search process. They understand you and you feel like part of a family.

Just to mention some of the companies present at NSHMBA: Microsoft, HP, IBM, Amazon, GE, P&G, General Mills, J&J, Toyota, etc.  I had a great time there, and had the chance to get to better know my Latino classmates from Fisher.

As you see, Fisher is always looking to offer you opportunities to succeed in your goals; this is a clear example.

Learning from the experience of top executives

I really highlight the effort of The Ohio State University and Fisher College of Business to strength relationships with top companies and to offer us testimonies of success. The best demonstration of this effort is that we received the visit of two CEOs (GE and P&G) in just one week.

I had the chance to attend both conferences and I think I will keep in mind many of the pieces of advice we received there, because these characters are example of achievement, clear goals and hard work. I just want to summarize what I found the most valuable from each conference.

On Wednesday, October 5, Jeffrey R. Immelt, CEO and chairman of General Electric, hosted a  Q&A session with Fisher MBA students. He gave us four main take-aways to pursue success:

  1. Think global.
  2. Always come up with a solution.
  3. Have the courage and be optimistic about the future.
  4. Compete and try hard.  We must like to win.

On Friday, October 7, Proctor & Gamble CEO, Bob McDonald spoke at Ohio Union about P&G’s vision and its commitment to “Improving life”. The main steps to accomplish this goal:

  1. Power of purpose: stay focus in purpose, willing to change the rest.
  2. Responsibility to be a force for good.
  3. Opportunity for action by:
    1. Transformation and innovation
    2. Sustainability
    3. Collaboration

I hope these lessons will help me in this new life I am starting. For sure there will be more opportunities to meet role models that will enrich our professional and personal life.

The joy of having a bike in Columbus

Before arriving to Columbus, my life was not conceived without a car. I was so used to drive a car that coming to Fisher was a change of life in almost every aspect of my life. I had the fortune to have a good friend here, Gabriela, who gave me her bike. Now I can say that I am happy to not have a car yet. Otherwise I would not have enjoyed the last days of summer and discovered such interesting landscapes. The one I would like to recommend to you is the Olentangy Greenway Trail.

Next to the OSU football stadium there is a path to get into the trail which is along the river. Then you can just start riding and enjoying the view. Riding a bike is a good exercise, and you have the chance to help the planet also because it is environmental friendly.

OSU campus has several bicycle parking spots for your convenience so you can use your bike to get there in a few minutes. Just be sure to bring a lock and follow the traffic rules.

Fisher Boot Camps

Having worked before as an IT Consultant some years, I feel I need a change in my career path. The problem is that I am not really sure what I want to do: probably Marketing, Operations, etc. After meeting my new classmates I realized that I was not the only person with that uncertainty. Fisher is aware of this situation, and that is how I learned about ‘Boot Camp’, a full day activity created to immerse MBA Students in specific disciplines. The goal of these events is to give MBA students all the resources available to make the right choice in terms of which concentration to choose. We also have the opportunities to meet companies that recruit MBA students in different concentrations.

The first Boot Camp that took place was about Consulting. One of the promises I made to myself was to never say ‘never’ so I decided to attend, just to see how it was like. I would say it was pretty interesting and I don’t regret to go. Many top companies like Deloitte, E&Y, McKinsey, etc came to Fisher and explained to us the type of work they do, and the opportunities we can have there.

So the experience was good for me, now I have a broader perspective about Consulting. And I am definitely attending the upcoming Boot Camps. So even if a specific concentration is not in your plans, I would recommend to go and see what it is like, it may surprise you.