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

Kevin – Update on Strategy

200x120Since our last discussion, we have actually had two result weeks (years in the life of the game) of the BSG and the competition is firing up. First, you have to understand how the game is scored. You get a maximum point value of 20 points each for reaching a specified target in EPS (Earnings Per Share); ROE (Return on Equity); Stock Price; Credit Score; and Image Rating. After that, you can earn an additional 4 points per target by exceeding your goal in each category for that week. This gives each team the opportunity to achieve a maximum of 120 points per week. So it is good to exceed your targets, however, if you blow way past them, as a couple of the teams did, you only get 24 points for that category. With that in mind, we were able to snag the most points at 116 for the week even though we were clearly outperformed in some areas.  Then there was week two.

Ouch is the word that comes to mind for week two.  I believe there are a few movies out there that sort of describes our second week (year in the life of the game), Blind Side; Jaws; Nightmare on Elm Street. We really took one on the chin. We were out-foxed by our competition and wound up right back in the middle of the pack for the game-to-date score. Never fear, we are Hayle’s Comets and we will be charging back this week. Here is our strategy…on second thought, maybe not, I’ll wait until the game is over and then I’ll share the strategy. Until then, you’ll just have to keep wondering.

Now, as far as the actual class is going, this past week was one of the most enjoyable. Dr. Scarboro arranged for a Strategic Management Panel with the following high-powered executives:

Talk about gleaning from the wisdom of others! I can’t begin to describe how exciting it was to have the opportunity to meet, discuss ideas, ask questions, and hear the stories of these executives. Stories of their successes and how it affected them and their failures and what they learned from them. Their stories were interesting, motivating, and sobering. With such a diverse group, I found a few common traits they all seemed to share:

  • Risk Tolerant – Albeit their risk tolerances were obviously different, they all had varying degree of high risk tolerance.
  • A Plan – They all described in general the plans they had, where they were along the lines of that plan, how it had changed over time and how important it was to at least have a plan to work from.
  • Humble – Each one of the panel members, although highly esteemed and accomplished individuals and community leaders, were approachable and encouraging even to the old gray haired men in the group.
  • PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) – Each member of the panel spoke with conviction when discussing their failures and pointed out how important it is to remain positive in times of adversity.
  • Execution – Even though Mr. Pontius actually articulated this important attribute, the resounding theme of the panel reinforced the importance of being able to execute your plan (and not your team).

How fitting for Dr. Scarboro to arrange for this panel discussion the week before we were to focus on Strategic Leadership. I guess you could say, “This ain’t his first rodeo.”

This week’s nugget of truth…Emotional Intelligence is the single most important quality that will separate the smart from the successful. Understanding the need to not only have a respectable IQ (intelligence quotient) but also a respectable EQ (emotional quotient) is paramount to a successful career that entails leading others. The capacity to recognize one’s own emotions and the emotions of others while maintaining the ability to make the tough choices and decisions is a foundational prescription for a successful career…until next time.

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


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