The Legends Lecture Series, a yearly event sponsored by the Fisher Black MBA Association, connected students, faculty and staff with successful black leaders in business throughout the month of February.

The series, co-sponsored by Fisher’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion Student Services, the National Black MBA Association, the Fisher Graduate Finance Association and the MHRM Council., brought to campus four influential black business leaders and culminated with a panel discussion hosted by Target Corporation showcasing top management across different functions, their background, struggles and successes.

"The Legends Lecture Series was a great opportunity to hear from some of the very best black leaders in business,” said Travis Nevels, an MBA student and president of Fisher’s Black MBA Association. “I enjoyed hearing each person’s unique story and how their experiences helped them become some of the most recognizable leaders in business.”

Randy Glanton
Finance Director, Global Forecast Operations, Procter & Gamble

Randy GlantonRandy Glanton

On the influence of technology in today’s business world:

“How you practice resiliency is the question. You have to put yourself in positions that are higher risk where you might fail. They don’t necessarily have to be professionally oriented. You can join an organization, run for office, try to join the local school board (and not get elected). There are lots of ways you can practice resiliency and look for challenges. “And when you look for challenges, look for ones that you don’t necessarily know you’ll accomplish. We love finding things that we’re good at. But try doing something that you don’t know if you can achieve.”

On the value of the MBA experience:

“We are not wired to take risks. Generally risks are way overestimated in our minds in comparison to reality, and that’s why we don’t take them. We need to be aware of this and work against it and find places and opportunities to challenge ourselves.”

Ken Coleman (MBA ’72)
Chairman of the Board, Saama Technologies

Ken ColemanKen Coleman

On the influence of technology in today’s business world:

"This is the most disruptive time in terms of technology since I graduated from here. There’s no safe business model in the world today. You’re going to be in a world where that business model is under attack. It’s under attack because of the super computer everyone is carrying around in their pockets—the smartphone. No matter what industry you work in, you’re going to be impacted dramatically by what technology allows you to do.

"One of my biggest lessons from technology is that common wisdom has never been right in a five- to seven-year window. It’s impossible to understand what technology will enable human beings to do. Human beings decide that."

On the value of the MBA experience:

"My MBA did two things for me. It allowed me to learn how to problem solve with incomplete or erroneous facts. That’s the real world. You never have all the information you’d like to have when making a business decision. The second thing it allowed me to do was to become a better communicator, both written and oral. To get someone to believe in your idea and support your conclusion, you have to be able to communicate that. I have a saying: ‘An idea you have, that I don’t know, you don’t have.’ "

Jesse Tyson (MBA ’76)
CEO and President, the National Black MBA Association

Jesse TysonJesse Tyson

On the role and importance of Black History Month:

“There are so many reasons why we really need to support and celebrate Black History Month, and it’s not just for the black citizens of the United States—it’s for Americans in general. We need to have good perspectives on where we have come from, where we are and the length of time it has taken us to get there. It helps put into perspective that there’s still a lot more work yet to be done.

"We can’t be haunted by the past. My position is that you use your past to make your future better. If we do that, we’ll continue to push toward more justice, equality and opportunities.”

On the role of global experiences:

“Employers are looking for workers who are comfortable competing with others in a global marketplace—not just Columbus, Ohio; not just the United States. When given the opportunity for an international assignment, please consider it. More than consider it. Please inconvenience yourself to get that opportunity because it’s a game-changer.”

Marlon Moore
Senior Vice President and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Huntington Bank

Marlon MooreMarlon Moore

On stepping out of comfort zones and seizing opportunities for advancement when they arise:

“What we need in this world, in this society and in corporate America are individuals who are resilient, who are able to overcome obstacles and challenges to be visionary—to perform at a very high level, and to be transformational.”

On his role as a diversity and inclusion officer, the need for more such leaders in corporate settings and why workplaces benefit from diverse experiences, viewpoints and employees:

“There is more of a need for chief diversity and inclusion officers and change agents today because the demographics of society are changing,” he said. “You’re leaving opportunity on the table when you don’t seek to understand other people, other ideas and other beliefs. My job is to create the space where everybody feels like they can bring their authentic and total selves to the workplace.

“When that happens, people and companies excel and reach their potential.”