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Sparking INNOVATION around the CAMPfire

On March 21, 2014, Innovation Fisher and the Association of Marketing Professionals present INNOVATION CAMP 2014 to a group of approximately 200 students and business professionals.

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The speaker line-up was phenomenal:

Sucharita Mulpuru, VP and Principal Analyst of Forrester Research
Cathy Lewis, VP and CMO of 3D Systems Corp.
A panel discussion – “Marketing Columbus as an Innovative City”
Daryl Butler, Director of Brand Marketing for Beats By Dr. Dre

Each speaker and discussion brought a different outlook and great takeaways of marketing and innovation in today’s world. Sucharita outlined disruptive innovation in the customer service industry, food and shopping/delivery models. Buying groceries online and having them delivered or picking them up at specific location? Count me in!

The discussion about 3D blew me away. From retail, electronic, automotive…even food! I am excited to see what happens next with this cool tool – the possibilities are endless. Cathy talked about the possibility of personalized organs and bones.

Cathy Lewis - 3D Systems

Cathy Lewis – 3D Systems

Then, there was a panel that told the audience how they are putting Columbus on the map. We compete directly with other cities such as Cincinnati, Chicago and etc. for talent and resources – how do we bring, and sustain, life in the good ol’ Columbus? Our brand of ColumbUS has always caught my eye, but it was interesting to see where that stems from. THE state of Ohio losing to Michigan because of the “Pure Michigan” campaign?! Say it isn’t so!

Fisher voted Beats by Dr. Dre as the Marketer of the Year. The event ended with a talk about Beats advertising that was incredible – Daryl talked about the “Hear What you Want” campaign and how storytelling plays a critical role in all commercials. The attribute of noise cancellation became the campaign of “Hear What You Want”. Daryl also talked about how products, culture and music support the company of Beats by Dr. Dre – but at the core is passion.

Daryl Butler - from Beats by Dr. Dre - to accept the Fisher AMP MOTY award

Daryl Butler – from Beats by Dr. Dre – to accept the Fisher AMP MOTY award

Here is the Beats commercial with Colin Kaepernick & the commercial about the Pill Dudes – whenever I watch these I feel so inspired!

Can’t wait to come back next year as a business professional :)

 


Angela Joyner, PhD – plug the leaky buckets

Last week was a whirlwind at school – with a ton of fantastic opportunities to have small-group chats with inspirational leaders.

Don’t believe me?

  • Monday – lunch with Melisa Miller, President of Alliance Data (and my future boss!) with a small group from my Advanced Leadership Class
  • Tuesday – Super Bowl Ad Review with AMP and a few marketing professors
  • Wednesday – lunch with Jeff Eldersveld from the Columbus Blue Jackets – data analytics meets marketing
  • Thursday – lunch with Dr. Angela Joyner, Vice President/General Manager at ConAgra Foods, Inc., courtesy of the Black MBA Association

Told you. Whirlwind.

On Thursday, a few females were asked to join Dr. Joyner for a lunch before her afternoon session to talk about women in the business world and leadership positions. I was so honored to be part of this event and have the chance to ask some questions to Dr. Joyner in a more personal setting. It was a very open dialogue and we discussed female leadership, tricks for approaching conflict and then general work-life balance concerns.

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Then Dr. Joyner spoke to a larger group later that afternoon. I filled several pages of notes during her session, but I summarized some of my favorite take-aways below.

These are great tips for business school, the workplace and life in general :)

  • Prioritize
  • Plug the leaky buckets – allow yourself more time to be effective — set guidelines and rules
  • Get the facts at work – Dr. Joyner said this beautifully; find out what good, better and a rock-star looks like at your company
  • Identify your gifts & be an expert in something
  • Create a powerful brand
  • Surround yourself with the right people
  • Find your entourage and create raving fans
  • Authentically promote yourself
  • Reflect, revise and renew – celebrate all of your accomplishments and look at your life with open eyes

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Fisher is constantly bringing in inspiring and note-worthy guests that speak to so many topics.

As you can see from the list at the beginning of the post – one week was full of diverse speakers from a wide range of organizations. The meeting with Dr. Joyner inspired me — but so did the lunch on Monday with Melisa Miller. She got me so excited about returning to Alliance Data and working every day to make an impact. However, my Wednesday lunch with Jeff Eldersveld from the Columbus Blue Jackets was extremely informative.

Just another great week here at Fisher!

 

 

If you’re interested, check out Angela on Twitter and her blog from The Wonder Loft‘s page.

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2014 Internal Case Competition – controlled chaos

A couple weekends back I volunteered for the 2014 Internal Case Competition. It was a great experience to set back and time – much less stressful that last year where my group and I were frantically trying to create a strategic plan, marketing campaign and solid finances for a fake perfume company.
I am a a big fan of case competitions – I even traveled to Calgary, Canada last year to complete in the Haskayne 24 Hour Case Completion with the Haskayne School of Business. Side note, want to see four outspoken and intelligent Fisher MBAs become experts about the Canadian Oil Sands Industry in less than a day? Send them to Canada and throw them into a case competition!

One thing I enjoyed seeing during my volunteering was truly how much you learn in business school. As a timer, I was able to watch several presentations – and hold up cards that said 5/2/1 minute left and STOP – yeah, I  know, I am a huge deal :)

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But in all seriousness, the presentations were fantastic. I am constantly in awe of the talent of my fellow classmates. The Class of 2015 is full of great presenters and very creative individuals. The Internal Case is a weekend of long nights, early mornings and learning how to communicate with your teammates. Judges aren’t afraid to ask intense questions and make you defend your ideas — or think on your feet!

Congrats on another successful Fisher Internal Case Competition weekend!

 

 


Middle Market Student Summit

On January 29, I was able to attend the Middle Market Student Summit – it was a great opportunity to learn more about a strong, but often over-looked, market. There is a Middle Market Summit, but this event is geared specifically towards students in a more casual setting.

As I learned, the U.S. Middle Market is a mighty force to be reckoned with. It is comprised of nearly 200,000 businesses that all have an annual revenue of $10MM — $1B. They are 1/3 of all US jobs and contributed more than 1.2 million new jobs last year. PLUS (and this is my favorite fact), they added  jobs during the financial crisis, when big businesses lost jobs.

- The National Center for the Middle Market on Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn -

student middle market

Some Middle Market companies you may not think about are Krispy Kreme, Smart Balance, American Apparel, Bravo Brio restaurants and Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams! These companies fall right into the sweet spot of being not-to-small, but also not-to-big.

With such large sums being thrown about – seriously, I think I heard the world million and billion more than thirty times – it was hard to stay on-top of all the information given. I was so surprised that the Middle Market makes such a huge impact on our local and national economy, but also how many Fisher grads and other professionals work for mid-size companies.

The speaker for the event was  Giovanni Feroce, the CEO of Alex & Ani (really cool jewelry that focuses on symbology and spiritual energy). Extremely candid and a joy to listen to, Mr. Feroce talked about doing the right thing and really working for what you believe in.

alex and ani

I thought it was interesting that he asks his employees three questions (see below). Trust me, this guy doesn’t cut corners and starts true to himself in every situation.
1) What were you hired to do?
2) What are you doing?
3) What do you want to do?

Fisher is always giving me and my fellow students opportunities to learn more, interact with interesting C-level executives and become the best business professional possible. Once again, this event didn’t  disappoint!

 


Bid Often & Bid High

Back in November, Fisher Follies held their yearly auction – and it was an INCREDIBLE NIGHT. Now, I am on the Follies Steering Committee, so I might be a little biased :)

For those who don’t know, Fisher Follies is a student organization with a lot heart and even more personality. Follies strives to celebrate and leverage the camaraderie of all Fisher students, faculty and staff in order to raise money for the “Fisher Community Fund”. This is a special fund that assist Fisher students who find themselves facing unexpected hardships. Bottom line, it strengthens the Fisher family and allows us to help another. Which in one of my favorite things about this school.

Auction items are donated by faculty, staff and students and range in all sizes and prices. There is a Silent and Live Auction, so the event is great for everyone.

For the Silent Auction, I donated coffee for a week – you text me, I bring you coffee! Other examples of donations include beautifully decorated cookies, dinner for two at Hyde Park, rounds of golf, even manual labor!

The Live Auction is where the big items come to the spotlight. These include tickets for the OSU/Michigan game, a private tour of the Watershed Distillery, brewing beers with Professor Campbell and rides in one of Professor Rucci’s classic cars. The list goes on and on — I had to keep a tight grip on my purse, I wanted to bid on everything!!

The prizes are fantastic, and the entire evening is full of laughs…and quite a bit of competitive bidding. Students dress up in cocktail attire (hey, it beats business professional) and make it a night to remember.

The next Follies event is the Variety Show in February – see you there!

Lindsey and I ready for the night!

 

Auctioneers bidding off “Pie a Michigan Fan!”

 

Good lookin’ group of 1st Year MBAs

 

This little princess came to the auction as well!

 

Todd (1sr yr MBA) and Jenn (Fisher Advisor) having a blast at the Follies Auction

 


The Man with a bowtie

As a Buckeye undergrad, I am no stranger to Dr. Gee and his adorable bowtie. He was President of Ohio State for my entire undergraduate career and the first year of my MBA program. On November 18, some Fisher students has the pleasure of having lunch with Dr. Gee and learning more about his background, views on OSU and how to keep energy and passion in your life.

Dr. E. Gordon Gee has been president of West Virginia University,  Vanderbilt, Brown and Ohio State (twice – because we are that awesome). In 2010, Time Magazine rated Gee one of the top 10 college presidents in the United States.

During the lunch, Dr. Gee talked about his love for Ohio State. He explained that it was a challenge, and opportunity, to pull together all the departments at OSU. The diversity allowed for connections to be made  by the OSU Medical Center, the College of Law, the College of Engineering and the Business School. He outlined his view of Fisher being tied to the integrity of the University and that it is essential for the university as a whole to constantly reinvent itself.

I thought it was refreshing to hear a leader talk openly about making mistakes – but also about learning from the past and moving forward. Dr. Gee emphasized the need to stay true to yourself, “Even if I failed, I made sure  I was going to do it having fun and with personality.” Students asked about dealing with criticism – and in typical  Gee fashion – the man just laughed. He said that he has received enough criticism till fill hundreds of books and that it typically isn’t about you as a person, but your actions.

Gee’s 5 keys too success:

  • Have self-confidence
  • Play to your own strengths
  • Have thick skin
  • Have a sense of humor
  • Have nerves like sewer pipes
  • Keep your passion – “If you don’t believe in what you’re doing, you want last very long”

Gordon Gee Brutus!
Could this man be any more adorable!?

My favorite takeaway from the entire lunch was Dr. Gee’s take on family and balance. He told how he is a workaholic, but looking back, regrets missing some important family moments. As he said, there is no substitute for a loving family, a good home and caring friends. 

 

 


O-H … I-O!

If you know me, it’s no secret that I am a huge buckeye fan. But, when you go to Ohio State for undergrad, buckeye fever is in your blood! However, it’s more than just a game on a field, it’s an experience. From tailgating with Fisher friends beforehand to going to the game and cheering on a win, it’s a great break from classes, homework, school, internship/job searching and the 10,000 other things on a business student’s to-do list.

Ohio State is full of rich traditions, but I think the football atmosphere takes win. When you are on campus during game day,everywhere you look it is a sea of scarlet and grey. Games are usually Saturday afternoons, but the night games against big components are even more fun. True, during late October and early November, the layers start to appear. We just played Penn State – and everyone was putting on scarves and hats!

OSU v. Penn State – cold, but so much fun

The Shoe!

Fisher Ladies!

Ohio State football is full of traditions, from Brutus Buckeye, to the Mirror Lake Jump, to the leaves on the players’ helmets. The games are a great way to bond with fellow students and make incredible memories. My MBA program is only two years, and they are FLYING right by me.

The game, and the celebrations before and after, are memories that I will never forget!

Go bucks :)


No global brands, just global marketers

Last week was the 2013 National Middle Market Summit - Leading From The Middle, which is a collaboration between Fisher and GE Capital. The event ensures that the middle market receives the attention it deserves – and helps drive conversation around these vital industries. Fisher students have been given the opportunity to have Q&As with C-level executives from GE, and if this event is anything like last year, it’s going to be a great experience for students.

I had the chance to sit-in on a round table discussion with Ian Forrest, the Vice President of Global Marketing for GE Capital on Monday afternoon. Here is a quick snapshot of Ian’s bio:

“Ian is responsible for the GE Capital value proposition, brand and global marketing communications activities. He is responsible for the GE Capital’s National Center for the Middle Market partnership with The Ohio State University.”

Bottom line, it was a really interesting discussion and a great opportunity to learn from a very talented marketer. Ian talk about how winners will redefine scale and that markets are becoming frictionless.He stressed the importance of not being constrained by traditional thinking and always, always, always investing in R&D. Ian discussed how R&D is the sure way to become better and point the company forward.

I thought the most interesting point was his opinion concerning global corporations and brands. Ian talked  about how there are “No longer global brands, only global marketers”. He told our small group of Full Time and Working Professional MBAs that some companies know how to win in every market – and that’s what will keep them in the forefront of their industries. To be successful, a company needs to be global and treat every market differently. Taking the exact business model that works in the US and trying to force its success in Brazil or China will only lead to failure.

There’s me – to the right, three people over!

Ian made several well articulated points – my notebook was full of snippets I want to remember! It was a great kick-off to the Middle Market summit, and I am excited to attend the main event on Wednesday!

 

 

 

Here are some ways to join in the Middle Market conversation:

#MidMarketSummit

@MidMarketCenter

@FisherOSU

@GECapital

 


#MidMarketSummit

Yesterday was the 2013 Mid Market Summit, and thanks to my GA, I was able to attend the afternoon sessions and help with social media. It was an incredible opportunity listening to business leaders discuss current trends, the future of the Middle Market and more.

One of my favorite moments was listening to ESPN’s Darren Rovell talk to Billy Beane (GM of the Oakland Athletics) about big data. Mr. Beane discussed the similarities between baseball and business – and how you need to trust your head, not your gut. It was a fascinating story — and I know that I will be renting Moneyball in the very near future.

Some of my classmates even got to meet Mr. Rovell after his segment and got a great photo!

Right: ESPN’s Darren Rovell
Left: Oakland Athletics’ GM, Billy Beane,

 

The Fisher Sports Business Association had the great opportunity to meet with Darren Rovell from ESPN/ABC today — he’s the authority on the business of sports.

These opportunities are what I absolutely love about my school. The National Center for The Middle Market, in collaboration with the Fisher College of Business and GE Capital, host this event and put critical attention on the Middle Market. Other speakers from yesterday included Under Armour’s CEO Kevin Plant, The Washington Post‘s CEO Don Graham, Jonah Berger (author of Contagious: Why Things Catch On and Marketing Professor at Wharton School, and more.

Story from Fisher about GE Executives visiting and sharing their expertise with students: http://fisher.osu.edu/newsroom/?folder=65&news=3744

It has been a very educational 72 hours for me, and everyone at OSU!


Lean Six-Sigma, The Basics

Last month I attended a Six Sigma Workshop during lunch with Professor Peg Pennington. It was about an hour and students with non-operating majors were encouraged to attend. I had my Matching Supply and Demand class with Professor Hill yesterday — boy was I glad I had that ops review a few weeks before! Professor Hill’s class will focus on different things than what we discussed during lunch, but the workshop was the perfect jolt back to the “ops world”.

I saw the Six Sigma Workshop on the Hub, a RSVP system that allows students to review and sign-up for activities.  These range from lunches to events put on by student organizations or Fisher departments, information sessions and more.  It’s a great system that allows students to stay organized and involved with everything at Fisher.

Throughout the workshop we discussed how six sigma is a problem solving methodology that uses research and data to construct a plan. Topics also included the DMAIC method (see illustration below) and quickly talking through two examples of a banks and an emergency room in a hospital. For a one hour workshop, it was jammed-packed with information!

Visual explanation of the DMAIC method – image taken from Google.

This type of of workshop is one of the reasons I absolutely love Fisher’s MBA Program. One of my fellow students described it best: I am treating this opportunity like a dressing room – I want to try on everything and see what fits”.

Fisher has given me an opportunity to find out my passions, but has also exposed me to brand new worlds. I will never be a finance guru, but I feel much more comfortable with the topic after my CORE finance classes and my  Corp. Finance 1 Class. Operations and Logistics, sign me up! Negotiations and strategy, let’s try it out!

My heart will always lean towards marketing and advertising, but why would you ever stop yourself from learning everything you could? I am excited for my Matching Supply and Demand and my diverse course load next semester. Who knows what I’ll learn and what “will fit”!?


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