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”!?

Three terms left…


  • Negotiation final – finished
  • Org. turnaround final paper – finished
  • Services Marketing final paper – finished
  • Corp. Finance 1 final brief – ….stay tuned

I cannot believe that as I am writing this, I am quickly wrapping up the first term of my final year of the MBA program. It’s unreal.

In the past two years I have studied and taken the GMAT, filled out applications for business school, interviewed, received admission letters, gone through pre-term, made it through my CORE classes (looking directly at you stats class!), interviewed for internships, accepted a wonderful internship and learned so much and am now making my way through year 2.

Also, add in a few happy hours, some tears, lots of laughs, some stress for good measure, and a bunch of people that I now consider my close friends.

These past couple years have been incredible and pretty challenging. When people ask me about my program my favorite phrase is, “it’s an adventure”. This has been a very humbling experience, and I still have so much more to learn. I am meeting great people in the Office of Career Management (direct shout-out to Jeff!), the GPO and in the classroom. My professors are becoming mentors and my classmates are becoming those that want me to become a better, smarter business woman.

Only three terms left?! Where has the time gone?

Strategic Innovation – so what ​exactly do you do?

This past summer, I was one of the Strategic Innovation Interns at Alliance Data Retail. Their office is over by Easton Mall, so a fairly easy commute from my apartment.

For those of you not familiar, Alliance Data is a company with three subsidiaries – LoyaltyOne, Epsilon and Alliance Data Retail. Looking specifically at Alliance Data Retail, they provide marketing and credit services that include private label, co-brand and more. They have approximately 110 clients across the United States.

Still a little confused? Think about a Victoria’s Secret, Pottery Barn, HSN or Express credit card – Alliance Data uses data to understand how customers shop to grow business for their clients through marketing and loyalty solutions .

It was a fantastic summer and I had an absolute blast! I learned so much and really grew as a business professional.

Ok, so now that we understand Alliance Data, let’s move on to Strategic Innovation. These are some pretty strong words with lots of  ambiguity.

As an Innovation Intern, I supported the team and helped move initiatives through the innovation pipeline. This included writing business plans to help “sell” initiatives to internal partners, holding ideation session to address customer needs and activated prototypes for specific clients.

Bottom line, my team uses data to help you shop better, and with  greater ease.

The best parts of my internship was feeling challenged by my projects, learning about ins & outs of an amazing company and meeting so many new people – but also feeling prepared. I loved that what we had discussed in class, was coming true right in front of my eyes. Business school teaches you how to think and a different way to approach problems. I reached out to my fellow students, along with Fisher‘s faculty, when I felt like I was struggling with my projects, and received such incredible support and guidance.

Really, where else can you find this? And my internship title? Pretty cool addition!


Bump, Set, Spike!

And the winner is …FLIPFLIP!

Friday night was the first volleyball tournament hosted by FisherServes (a student organization that focuses on volunteering and community service). I am the VP of Marketing for this organization and was so excited to be part of the team that put on this event.

Quick basics of the event:

FisherServes invited students from all programs to create a team for the tournament. There was a six player minim for teams and at least two girls needed to be present on the court at all times.

Players paid $5 to play and picked a charity to “play for”. FisherServes matched the funds raised and donated the total to the winning’s team charity.

So, obviously I am a little biased, but I thought it was a huge success. I was so touched by the generosity of the Fisher family.

The winning team on Friday was FLIP-FLIP. Due to their incredible volleyball skills, FisherServes will be giving $850 ($425 donated by the players and $425 matched by FisherServes) to the charity, Flip. This remarkable charity helps individuals live a lifestyle that prevents cancer through a shift of thinking and holistic approaches.

the winning team FLIP-FLIP and some members of the FisherServes Exec. Team

On FLIP-FLIP was Mary, Lindsey, Tara, Ryan, Todd and Joel. This combined team of MHRM’s & MBA’s played a hard fought game against, The Avengers, a team of talented MHRM students.

I know what you’re thinking – we have talented volleyball all-stars across ALL programs here at Fisher 🙂

*To learn more about FisherServes or other organizations that I am involved with, please see my recent post: Getting Involved – With Precision*

See everyone soon!


Getting Involved – With Precision

It’s no secret, I love to join clubs and organizations. You can ask people in my program! If possible, I would join every single club at Fisher. However, that isn’t always the best idea…it’s better to join organizations that align with your passions, interests and future career goals (I know, sounds kind of corny – but it’s true!)

Personally, I am the VP of Marketing for FisherServes, Treasurer for Innovation Fisher and on the Steering Committee for Fisher Follies. I am also a member of AMP (Association of Marketing Professionals).


Just for your reference:

  • FisherServes – An organization that focuses on philanthropy and community service. We connect FCOB students to volunteer activities in Columbus and we host events that raise money for the surrounding community. Tomorrow is our volleyball tournament – stay tuned for that post!!
  • Innovation Fisher– Is a group that focuses on innovation throughout all aspects of the business world. We offer workshops, engagement activities, tours/events and ways to truly see innovation in practice.

    IF homepage – click the icon to learn more!
  • Fisher Follies– A student group that fosters community at Fisher through creativity (and humor). The two major events are an auction and variety show

    The FisherFollies Exec Team getting ready for the 2013 Variety Show
  • AMP – The marketing group of FCOB. This group helps prepare students for marketing careers with support, knowledge and networking.




See? Told you that I like to be involved. But, hey, it adds excitement and things to do to my already busy school schedule.

Each of these clubs has a special place in my heart. I have met incredible people through these organizations and had an absolute blast. With AMP I traveled to Chicago last year for the marketing hop and am constantly getting to network with fantastic marketing professors and professionals. IF uncovered my passion for innovation and led to my internship at Alliance Data as their Innovation Intern. FisherServes allows me to really stretch my marketing and event planning skills, with lots of fundraising experience as well. FisherFollies introduced me to a great group and really shown me how a small, but mighty, group can impact the Fisher community.

HOWEVER – these are just the groups that I decided to join. Everyone’s story is a little bit different. My friend is a part of the Fisher Graduate Women in Business and putting on workshops that address issues women face in the business world. Another good friend of mine is part of the Fisher Networking Club and plans all of the events/happy hours/socials that make Fisher a family.

We also have a Consulting Club, a Veterans Association, a  Chinese Business Professional Association, a Sports Business Association and so, so many more.

Students are able to attend workshops and events of other organizations, so it’s a great way to learn more about topics outside your focus. For example, I have a one-hour Six Sigma workshop next week and lunch with a C-level Executive next month, and about ten other events in-between. Not too shabby 🙂

Bottom line – join the clubs that are going to be fun. Doesn’t matter if it’s not your major or your focus, join clubs that you think will interest you.

You won’t be bored here at Fisher!

Fisher’s Faculty

One of my favorite things about The Fisher College of Business is the incredible faculty. My time in the Full Time MBA has introduced me to incredible professors and lecturers  – all who are more than willing to share their experiences and expertise.

Professor James A. Hill Jr – Worked at Pepsi Cola as a production manager and a supplier development manager

I am currently enrolled in the class Organization Turnaround taught by Mr. Jeff Rodeck, who worked at FedEx as Senior Vice President before becoming CEO and turning around Hyperion. It is a very interesting class and he has brought in other speakers to share their experience of how to change the course of a company/firm for the better.

Other professors have worked for P&G, Sears, PriceWaterhouse Coopers, Deloitte, Pepsi Co., The Limited, Wells Fargo and more. It is a wonderful opportunity to learn from those that have experience in the field and with companies across the globe.

Fisher’s faculty also have incredibly diverse and broad research background. Publications vary across all areas and numerous members of our faculty have received distinguished awards for their publications.

Our Senior Associate Dean, Karen Hopper Wruck, also teaches Corporate Finance II. I am currently taking Corp. Finance I now – so hopefully I’ll be seeing her in the classroom next term!

See all faculty bios and learn about their expertise here.

Talk soon!

Intopia – The Class that Makes You CEO

Yesterday evening was my first Intopia class…I don’t think my team and I will be getting much sleep on Tuesdays.

A quick recap of the glorious Intopia: students split into teams of four and own a computer/PC business. With a home office and the ability to enter the markets in the USA, Brazil and Europe – teams will act as internal business owners. We will chose (and modify) a strategy, negotiate, look into market research and R&D, review financials, convert currencies and 1,000 other things.

We will learn how to work with team-members – both defending positions and compromising.

I am very excited, yet very apprehensive, for this class.

However, opportunities such as this is the core reason I entered into Fisher’s MBA program. I want to push myself out side my comfort zone and really understand a business. This class is going to force me to take a deep dive into financial reports (see how I used an awesome BSchool word right there?!), something that isn’t my strength.

This simulation class is also permitting me to work with different classmates. I am excited to get to know them a little bit better, and the hours and hours I will be spending at Gerlach Hall on Tuesday evenings will be the perfect opportunity.

Thanks for reading! Talk soon,


Feeling Like A Second Year MBA

Classes start this week – so I checked Carmen to review classes, downloaded syllabi, figured out readings and books and made sure I am ready to go for Wednesday.

Just a typical week in the life of a soon-to-be second year MBA student.

The best part of completing the first year of my program and wrapping up my summer internship is the feeling of KNOWING. I know where to go for class, I know what’s expected of me, I know my classmates, I know it’s going to be a little stressful, I know it’s going to be a lot crazy –and I know it’s going to be a fantastic adventure.

Second year is all electives, so students pick their own schedule. Here is what I have in store for the first seven weeks:

  • Services Marketing
  • Org. Turnaround
  • Negotiations
  • Corp. Finance 1
  • Intopia

I know Corporate Finance and Services Marketing will strengthen what I learned during my internship. I can’t wait to see what Negotiations is all about and I’ve heard amazing things about Org. Turnaround. Intopia? Stay tuned! I know that class is going to be challenging and really strengthen my skills – but it is going to be quite a bit of work.

Can’t wait to share my journey with everyone – thanks for reading!

Thanks to Team 7

A good team makes working on projects and assignments easier.

A great team helps you keep calm when you have seven interviews in one week, two homework assignments due and a midterm within days.

Luckily, I fall into the second category! I wanted to take a quick second and thank my incredible team members: Pat, Davin, Arjun and Tracy for everything this past month.

Not only did February bring snow and cold (also some 60 degree days – thanks Ohio), but lots of interviews, projects and and team assignments.

You thought finding time for coffee with a friend was hard – try finding time on  5 calendars to meet for 2 hours. A nearly impossible task.

But, you make it work. You talk to your team and projects are suddenly divided up through emails and Google docs. You have meetings through Skype, speakerphone and more. Everyone supports one another and with some open and honest communication (and coffee if you’re me), everything is somehow perfected and turned-in before the due date.

THAT, my friends, is some FCOB teamwork magic. And I know magic, I worked for the mouse himself.

Business school is more than learning the material, it’s adapting to crazy situations and knowing how to be a leader — and a  team player. You learn how to ask, and accept, help from team-members.

So thank you to the incredible and supportive individuals of Team 7, we almost made it through another crazy term!


Things to do in Columbus (plus, a little buckeye)

This past weekend, I was able to go to the Columbus Blue Jackets game with my younger sister. While my wonderful Jackets lost 2-3, Erin and I had a blast AND we received free hats!

My younger sister is a freshman at Ohio State and currently applying to the nursing program. I am so happy that she chose to attend OSU – so I can see her a little more frequently AND keep an eye on her. Because truly, what are big sisters for?

My sister & I cheering on the Blue Jackets!

I’ve mentioned it in a few previous posts, but I love Columbus, Ohio. I moved here in 2007 when I started at OSU as an undergrad, and I now consider the 614 my home. I moved back to Cincinnati for a summer or two, and then Orlando, Florida when I was working at Walt Disney World. Still, from Southern  Ohio to Florida – there is something special about Columbus.

When entering the MBA program, you are surrounding yourself with resources, both inside and outside school. We have top companies in the Columbus Area (check out this article that appeared in Inc. in 2011), cool neighborhoods when you are ready for some fun and great sports teams (what can I say – I’m a sports girl).

Cool places to around school:

  • Arena District – see a show and have a drink – I’m in heaven!
  • Short North – edgy and express (see my post about Betty’s!)
  • German Village – shopping, bakeries, coffee and beautiful architecture
  • Grandview – Close to campus and great for place for graduate students to go when wanting to relax and enjoy a happy hour
Sports around Columbus:
Other cool things in my favorite city:
So, why are you still reading? go explore this fabulous city – see you around 🙂