by Patrick Goth, Yuan He, Levi Palmer, and Andrew Topinka
Following the end of the Deloitte Battle of Ohio Case Competition, my teammates and I were asked to write a blog post on our experiences. We were all excited to have the opportunity to share what we learned with our fellow Fisher classmates.
In order to participate in the event, we had to submit our resumes, case experience and why were interested in competing. Following a short interview featuring a market-sizing question, we were admitted and placed into two teams that would compete in Fisher’s name. Some of the more popular reasons that we stated why were interested in competing included:
- Representing Ohio State and Fisher in a large statewide competition
- Compete against top students from other schools in Ohio
- Learn about the consulting industry
- Network and hear from Deloitte Consulting
We all had a meeting with Dan Oglevee where he discussed the best practices for approaching a case. He worked with us in order to decide upon the following structure:
- Financial Results and Effect on Share Price
- The Strategy
- The Timeline for the Project
- The Cost of Implementation
This structure was what we used to guide us through the case, and ultimately it was how we presented our solution in the live competition.
When working on our case in the beginning of the week, we worked mostly from the information provided and discussed what we thought the actual problem even was. We met in the evening after receiving the case to discuss what we thought the problem was and what our initial reactions to the provided information were. On the second day, we built a model that would work as our “baseline” for what the company would do without implementing any changes. It was not until the third day that we began to lay out our strategy.
We were lucky to have a PowerPoint template from Deloitte to work with, which allowed us to focus on our content, rather than our style. This was especially important in the last few days of the case when we were deciding upon individual roles and who would be presenting what. This way, we could create our slides individually according to the template, and they would easily fit together in the final presentation. In retrospect, it may have been better to divide our roles earlier in the week. However, we had one of our teammates focus on the introduction and conclusion of our presentation, so not splitting up the work early allowed everyone to have a hand in the strategy of the case.
Our case dealt with introducing a new manufacturing process to a company in the aerospace and defense industry, which opened up many doors in terms of points of research and factors that could risk our implementation. For example, the financial markets could change the rates at which a company could borrow just as much as international relations could change the sales potential of the company. Either way, it changes the bottom line and the share price for the company. We had to learn to make assumptions to build our case.
It was a relief when it came to the actual day of the presentation, as we all felt confident with the work we did over the previous week. There were six schools present, with eleven teams. The eleven teams were divided between three different rooms for the first round of judging, with one team from each room moving on to the second round. We were lucky to make it through the first round, and have the opportunity to present to the entire crowd. The panel of judges for the second round included several partner level consultants.
Following all the presentations, we waited patiently to hear the results of our effort. We ended up taking second place, which was fantastic considering the number of schools present and the caliber of students present. Overall, it was a great week and an awesome learning experience.