Archive Page 4

Down Time!!!

down time

Finals, Midterms, Job Applications, Projects……. All those are words that have become part of my daily vocabulary. In fact I am willing to bet that it has become part of everyone’s vocabulary who is a graduate student at the Fisher College of Business. It is though what makes the school such a great place for students to develop. We are exposed to so many things and facets of life in such a short time even if it is 2 years. At the end of the day it is what brings in the big bucks or to put it better; it is what makes us better people, better members of society, people who question the status quo and push for better things.

There is a word that is missing from the afore-mentioned list though, at least in my case. I get so engrossed in all the technical aspects of what I am doing and learning here that I forget to breathe. I forget to ask a classmate how their weekend was or miss a smile from a passing friend because I am think of how I am going calculate the zero yield of a certain bond. It is not always the case because as the picture shows above, I do remember sometimes and better yet that passing friend stops me in the hallways and asks me how my weekend was. They ask me if I am free for lunch so that we can go to Diaspora (Possibly best Korean food in Town). This aspect of my graduate career so far is my favorite because I realize that as much as I am thinking about that zero yield rate, they too are thinking about it or another thing regarding classes and we discuss the subjects in a nonacademic way relating it to our lives.

Pictured above are two of my classmates Elijah li and Taylor Snare who remind me that sometimes a smile and some breathing is all one needs to get through the day. The rest, we learn as we go and ask questions so that in the future we can answer other people’s questions as well.


Human Resource Invitational Case Competition

Last Saturday, Fisher held the Fifth Annual Human Resource Invitational Case Competition. This competition is an annual competition which involves five premier master’s programs in human resources in the U.S. to compete against one another. These programs including: Cornell, Illinois, Minnesota, Rutgers, and of course, Ohio State. Sponsored by PepsiCo, the case competition requires candidates to come up with solutions based on the case that PepsiCo provided in 20 hours. Derek Lancashire, one of our team members, and my classmates, told me that the process was stressful because they received the case on Friday morning and had to give presentation on Saturday morning. But our team did a good job. They ranked second in the competition. In addition, Marlina Frederick, a second year MHRM student, was given the award of Best Q&A. Well done, buckeyes!

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Time Management: If You’re Reading This, It’s Too Late

In the midst of a two and a half week onslaught, I write to you during a brief respite to talk about time management and the dire importance of learning how to manage your time, for sanity’s sake.

The past two weeks have, on top of the normal demands of daily MBA coursework, included seven team projects, two individual assignments and a marketing case competition. Sounds like a lot, right? We haven’t finished just yet. The cherry on top of the sundae is a blitz of finals this coming Monday and Tuesday to round out the term.

running man time management

To give you some insight, the breadth and depth of our assignments included:

  • Team Operations Management II Case
  • Team Presentation in Global Business Environment
  • Team Strategy Case
  • Team Marketing Management II Case
  • Team Global Business Environment Term Paper
  • Team Global Business Environment Term Presentation
  • Team Marketing Management II Term Project and Presentation
  • Individual Strategy Case
  • Individual Operations Management II Assignment
  • Macy’s Marketing Challenge
  • Yet to come:
    • Operations Management II Final
    • Marketing Management II Final
    • Global Business Environment Final

My classmate Danny already touched on the importance and ever-present inclusion of group work into our MBA experience. I can whole-heartedly say that the bulleted to-do list above would not be possible without an accountable core team. Thankfully, my team and I successfully worked together and spent hours and hours pushing to ensure we had quality deliverables. Yes, tensions can run high. No, you cannot escape it. It’s these experiences that best mirror working under tight deadlines with a team in the business world. Setting aside the individual for the betterment of the team, sharing responsibility and depending on each other to shoulder the burden each weigh heavily in the foundation of a high performing team.

time manaegment clock

Now, I’ve got to get back to it. If you think you possess great time management skills, be prepared to back it up. I thought I was pretty good, but I still have plenty to learn. The good news is, we all survived and by 2:45 pm Tuesday afternoon, we’ll have a chance to take a deep breath.

That is, until we start our next term the following morning at 8:30 am.


Fisher MAcc Intramurals

This session a group of MAcc students (myself included) decided to form an Intramural Co-Ed Basketball Team. Since The Ohio State University is a large university there is a huge number of intramural sports offered for several different groups of people. We were able to enter a co-ed graduate, professional, and faculty league for basketball that plays on Tuesday evenings.

Through three games, The Embezzlers are sporting a powerful 3-0 record entering the second half of the season. With two more games before the beginning of the playoffs, we are hopeful for a high playoff seed and maybe even a championship.

All joking aside, playing intramural basketball has been a terrific addition to my MAcc experience. It has provided an opportunity for me to interact with my friends in the MAcc program in a way that has absolutely nothing to do with accounting or schoolwork. More importantly, the exercise serves as a healthy outlet of stress from classes or looming finals!

Stay tuned for more updates on the progress of The Embezzlers!


Ohio Weather !!!

good weather

I definitely think that I should have posted this earlier or for those not familiar with Ohio. We’re in February and I was driving back from Dayton Ohio this morning sliding ever so slightly on i-70 and I remember just how fast the weather can change in this great State of ours. I remember seeing runners two weeks ago running in shorts and even homeowners mowing their grass. That was at the beginning of February and I was amazed. I actually drove around the city with my windows down so that I could enjoy the warmth and sunshine. I even took a walk by the river but I had a sweater on because I know you Ohio and weather appearances can be deceiving.

I have to digress of course because I have lived in this state long enough to know how fast the weather can change. As mentioned above, appearances can be deceiving. I have had days where I have been wearing shorts inside the house to sweats, socks, a sweater and the heater blowing all in the same way. It in fact happened to me last week. I got caught off guard because I assumed that since we had had a mild winter so far (mild by polar vortex standards), the worst had passed. Of course I was fast reminded of that when yesterday while grabbing some groceries from Walmart I saw people people sliding all around as if there was a secret audition to “Fast and Furious Tokyo Drift ” that I did not know about. The most confusing part seeing these people driving though was that they were all going faster than me in cars that I know are not 4 wheel drive like mine and acting as if it was a regular June day. For my part, I am a fairly slow driver but even slower when there is snow, sleet, and ice involved.

bad weather

The Ohio weather though is what makes Ohio the beautiful state that it is. For its part when it is cold and it is miserable people will still smile at you. You will still see the dedicated runners with spikes on their trainers clocking their 10 milers in. And when it cannot get any colder and the clouds part ever so slightly, we are privy to a little sunshine and are reminded that its just an Ohio thing!!!


Every Opportunity

When I first started the program, my logic was that you went to info sessions in order to get information about a place that you wanted to go for your internship. However, in going through the program, I attend as many information sessions as I possibly can. These are free opportunities to interact with professionals and to learn about their specific industry. In another sense, you also get the opportunity to look at possible trends or connections between the industries. If you notice the same thing coming up in each session, that only strengthens your ability to enter into your field with a more comprehensive outlook. I recently attended an information session on Gender issues. It was led by the CFO of Cardinal Health and it was an amazing an inspirational lecture. I immediately went home and started looking at how I can start integrating that understanding into my own workplace.

My Chinese classmates have been patient enough to help me with my very basic ability in speaking Chinese. It is usually only a few minutes after class, but it gives me the opportunity to interact with others that I don’t know as well in a medium that I haven’t mastered. It’s definitely humbling, but it encourages me to listen better, and reminds me that no one person knows everything and everyone has something unique about them to share. Taking full advantage of this program requires an interest into not only drawing off the wealth of knowledge from the professors, but also in your classmates.  Every time I go to class, I look forward to hearing how others are thinking about things and to better understand how they think and speak.

More importantly, through all the opportunities that are coming up, the most important one is the one available most days of the week. One day, I got home around 10 pm (due to class and a late group meeting for class) and I spent about 40 minutes cleaning and tidying up the house. My wife had a rough day and it was a great opportunity to do something nice for her. Another day, I was just about to start reading for class when my daughter came up to me and said, “Do you want to have a tea party?” I said, “yes.” We sat down eating imaginary blueberry and strawberry cakes accompanied by imaginary blueberry and strawberry tea. Another day, my son brought me a book, turned around, and sat in my lap. We read that picture book at least ten times straight. No matter how busy my schedule gets, I will not lose sight of the most important opportunities.


Case Competitions

As you may know, a big part of getting an MBA is competing in case competitions. There are numerous case competitions focusing on different subjects – “Marketing, Finance, Venture Capital, Supply Chain, Strategy, Operations, Data Analytics, Marketing Analytics, etc.” – across the country and even the globe. Ohio State prides itself by competing in and performing well in all of these case competitions. Recently Ohio State took first place in the ACG case competition in Cleveland and second place in the Strategy case competition at the University of Illinois.

Teams from Ohio State have competed or plan to compete in the below competitions.

  • Procter & Gamble Marketing Case Competition
  • The Lincoln Challenge
  • Macy’s Marketing Case Competition
  • Venture Capital Investment Competition “VCIC”
  • The Big Ten Case Competition
  • ACG Case Competition
  • International Supply Chain Case Competition
  • Deloitte Supply Chain Case Competition
  • The GE Case Competition
  • And many more

What are the prizes you ask? They range from a cool trophy to $40,000 CASH!!!!

I have competed in three case competitions and plan to complete in more. They are a great learning experience, fun, tiring, stressful and a fantastic networking opportunity. Many students end up with internships and full-time jobs from competing in case competitions.


MHR 7310 (Labor Relations) Collective Bargaining Agreement

I am currently in a Labor Relations class (MHR 7310), and one of the course requirements is the completion of a Collective Bargaining Agreement simulation. Each student was placed in teams of 3-4 other negotiators (their peers). Half of the groups were assigned as Union representation and half  were assigned as Management representation. Then each assigned Union group was paired with a Mangement group, and the goal was to reach an agreement on a contract we were to renegotiate.

We were provided information about the company, and information about the demands that are likely to be proposed by both the Union and Management. Prior to negotiating, each group costed out the impact of different demands and options, researched market data, considered legal issues, and determined which clauses in the current Bargaining Agreement would be impacted by each demand.  After each group identified their strategy and tactics for the negotiation, as well as their priorities and anchors, both parties joined for the actual negotiation. The goal was to reach an agreement on the key issues each group identified to serve as the new bargaining agreement. It was definitely a learning experience, and a fun one as well!

Contract


MAcc Breakfast

If I haven’t learned anything else from the MAcc program so far, I have learned two things: 1. MAcc students get a lot of free Panera and 2. The professors here love getting to know their students.

Recently I attended something called “The MAcc Meet & Greet Breakfast.” This is a casual gathering where a small group of MAcc students are invited to attend breakfast with MAcc faculty. Only about 10 students are invited at a time and there were 5 faculty members at the breakfast I attended. I think this event is an excellent example of what a personal level of attention students in the MAcc program here at Fisher receive. The faculty truly want to get to know you and are genuinely concerned about what is going on in the students’ lives – as far as classes, jobs after graduation, hobbies, spring break plans, etc.

panera bagel

Many students are invited to a MAcc Breakfast session during first semester, and this is a nice way for students to get to know professors even if they had not them in class yet. Since I went during second semester, I already knew the professors from having them in class, but breakfast was a fantastic way to catch up and get to know these professors in a context outside of class.

Coming from a small undergraduate school, I can truly say that the MAcc program here at Fisher offers the unique personal connections and attention one would typically get at a smaller university, but still has so many of the benefits and opportunities that come with attending such a large university with so many resources!


New Challenge, New Mentors, New Partners

It’s almost the middle of the first session and I have finally written my first blog for this semester. We still have just 3 core courses in the evening, but having heard a lot of good words about the selective courses, I chose to take 3 of the selective courses after a tough picking process. I’m interested in a lot of topics, such as leadership, team performance, technology innovation, and so on.

I end up with 6 classes on my list. One week later I found myself buried in reading materials, and although they are all very interesting, I dropped one of my selective classes.

This semester, we’ve got more readings, assignments, quizzes, and exams. But luckily, we’ve also got experienced teachers guiding us through the valuable process and classmates making progress with us. For example, Professor Klein has our picture and names and tries to remember every one of us. His class always begins with an interesting riddle and a quiz. A quiz is always stressful to me, but it happens the same day when I finished the reading and learn about it in the lecture. The best part is if I do well in all his quizzes, I can choose not to take the final exam.

Why we choose this program? Here’s our answers from our survey.
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