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CBU MBA graduate class of 2010. Also known as Erin Wiles.

Kevin – BSG Start

Another week, another trip to the knowledge Doctor – this time it is Dr. Scarboro.  We have just finished our first practice week of the BSG (Business Strategy Game) in his Strategic Management course.  Now, if you have not tried this, it is AWESOME.  As a corporate executive, I really appreciate the honing of my skills through the activities associated with the BSG as well as the challenges my teammates and cohort members put before me each week.  I would certainly be a better manager and leader just by hanging out with these high quality professionals, not to mention matching intellectual swords with them on a weekly basis.  Stimulating does not properly describe the CBU MBA experience.

Decisions we make on a weekly basis (each week represents a year in the life of the company) include corporate environment decisions, production, marketing, distribution, and corporate infrastructure.  Our industry happens to be footwear and the decisions range from what price you are going to charge for internet sales; wholesale; and private label to where these are going to be manufactured and shipped (don’t forget the dollar exchange rate and the shipping costs to get the products from the plant in Asia-Pacific to the retailers in Latin America).  All-in-all, there are about 174 decisions that have to be made each week.  This is challenging enough but without a Strategic Plan it would be disastrous.

What a week –  the guiding principles and strategic decision exercises only help to heighten our learning experience.  It is one thing to read a text, listen to a lecture, and write a paper; it is something totally different to sit in a conference room with your three teammates realizing the decisions you personally make this week compared to the decisions your competitors are making will directly affect not only your grade but also your teammates grade.  Hum….sounds a bit like the corporate boardroom.

Thankfully we are not alone – with a class size of 15, we have a unique opportunity to be more engaged with Dr. Scarboro.  That is one of the many attributes of the CBU MBA experience.  Limited class sizes along with quality cohorts make for a robust learning experience.

The great part of the classroom preparation for me is that as I am preparing for class, I am interweaving the principles I am learning with my day to day management responsibilities.  I’ve even had one of my managers tell me he was interested in pursuing his MBA since he has seen the impact it has had not only on me but also on our team at work.  I call it “Education in Action”.  If you are looking for an MBA to hang on the wall – you can get one online for about $399.00.  If you are looking for an MBA with shoe leather, this is the place.

Well, back to my planning session, I have a staff meeting with my teammates and I have to be prepared….until next time.

Kevin Fleming
Owner of KTF Consulting
MBA Concentration: Undecided
Graduating: May 2011


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