Evening Weekend IBD Program Kicks Off

EWMBA IBD Students

While the Full-Time MBA (FTMBA) program is at the end of their engagement with IBD, 18 Evening and Weekend MBA (EWMBA) students kicked off their IBD experience on May 14th.  This is the 6th year that the course has been offered to EWMBA students and although the program is very similar to the FTMBA course, there is one significant difference: time.  The summer program has much less of it overall, as students only have seven weeks of instruction and two weeks in-country working with clients.  EWMBA Teams are also made up of 4-5 students and led by a Team Lead, who is a classmate but unlike the FTMBA Program, the EWMBA Team Leads don’t have the additional weeks to work with their client to build rapport and gather intel on their project before their Team Members join the project.  Instead, they have to jump right into the process and establish themselves as a lead of their project to their client and teammates.  When asked about his strategy for being a Team Lead at this point in the process, the Samai Distillery Team Lead, Sushant Barave said:

Team Aramis

“Although we are at a very early stage, I am realizing how amazingly competent our team is. In a way, this makes my job as a team lead quite easy! I hate to call it a ‘strategy’ because it really boils down to keeping things really simple at this stage – having open communication, a structured approach to understand and address client’s needs, and making sure that all of us are having fun in the process!”

This is a sentiment we hear often from Team Leads in both the FTMBA and EWMBA programs.  The Aramis Menswear Team Lead, Kalyan Pentapalli shared, “I have a very experienced team and sometimes it feels intimidating leading three third year students, but they have been gracious enough to let me set an example and lead.”

Lead, motivate, organize, delegate, and manage work streams is what our EWMBA Team Leads will do as they prepare to go in-country on July 1st.  It’s a quick turn-around and with full-time jobs and other obligations, it is a lot to manage.   “It has already been great working with the team, and we are getting familiar with each other’s working styles. Given our crazy schedules collectively as a group, we have also been open to calls ranging from 7 am to 11 pm – this goes to show the flexibility and commitment from the team members”, shares Barun Mazumdar, a member of the Aramis Team.

Many students come to Haas because of the opportunity IBD gives them.  The Team Lead for ACT,  Praveen Settipalli, was determined to take IBD before he graduated despite having a new baby and starting work at a startup.  He heard first-hand experiences about IBD from his classmates and he, like so many others, felt he could benefit from the opportunity to work on an international consulting project.  “As a product manager, IBD will help me renew my core-consulting skills of framing the problem, lead a diverse team to formulate the strategy and obtain resources for successful execution. Doing this in a different industry/culture with a team of amazing Haas MBAs will also teach me how to lead across diverse environments. Personally, the IBD structure would allow me to embrace uncertainty and openness and immerse myself in a new environment. I also hope to reflect on my current environment and leadership style while at the client location and come back not just with awesome solutions for the client but also unforgettable memories and experiences.”

Team Samai

Frank Schultz, the Instructor and Faculty Mentor for the EWMBA program is confident that his students will be able to balance all of their competing priorities to find personal and professional successes from their IBD experience.   “I have been teaching the EWMBA IBD program since inception and every year I appreciate how much my teams dedicate themselves to their client and projects to provide true ROI – despite their day jobs and their families.  I have no doubt that this year’s students will work very hard and like every year, they will enjoy getting a taste of consulting in a global setting.  They will undoubtedly come back from their two weeks in-country with new perspectives, tools, and confidence to try different approaches.”

Teams will travel all over the world this July.  Praveen’s team will work with a social enterprise that provides entrepreneurship training and mentorship to young Zimbabweans and Sushant is taking his team to Cambodia to work with a rum distillery start-up.  We have one team that will travel to Mexico to work with a consumer and corporate financial services company, and Kalyan’s team will work with a privately held 20-year old menswear retailer in Brazil.  We are confident that these EWMBA students will have unforgettable and invaluable experiences.

Team ACT

Tackling the Youth Skills Gap in Uganda: An Update from Makerere University

Written By: Team Makerere, Hans Klinger, Elizabeth Foster, Matthew Hamilton, Jeannie Valkevich, and Carolyn Chuong

Our sweet ride while in Kampala that we affectionately call the “Mute-mobile” (our IBD team is creating the strategic plan for the Mutebile Center at Makerere University)

Our sweet ride while in Kampala that we affectionately call the “Mute-mobile” (our IBD team is creating the strategic plan for the Mutebile Center at Makerere University)

We arrived in Uganda around midnight, which meant we needed to wait an extra day to see the bright blue sky, rich red clay, and lush green foliage of East Africa. However, what we didn’t have to wait for were the bright smiles of the welcoming Ugandan people. Charles, one of our clients at Makerere University, was awaiting our arrival with a Berkeley baseball hat, personalized sign, decaled car, and a grin ear to ear. This would become standard during our first week in-country, when we would meet Makerere students, university professors, the Governor of the central Bank of Uganda, the Prime Minister, and many others.

Our team is working specifically with the Makerere University Private Sector Forum (PSF), which was established 11 years ago as a public-private partnership in the country’s largest and most prestigious university. The Forum’s mission is to bridge academia and the private sector to foster socioeconomic development throughout the country. It’s now launching a new center, for which our IBD team is creating the strategic plan, that will address the youth skills gap in Uganda.

Jeannie Valkevich demonstrating how to create a journey map

Jeannie Valkevich demonstrating how to create a journey map

Before arriving, and continuing into our first-week in-country, we’ve conducted over 50 interviews across what our client calls the ‘trinity’: Academia, the Public Sector, and the Private Sector. Part of the process was understanding the student perspective and, in particular, their pain points as they enter the workforce. To that end, we carried out a design thinking workshop for 23 students, led by our team’s former rockstar teacher (and timekeeper connoisseur) Jeannie. After a silly icebreaker that involved some pretty embarrassing dance moves on our end, we asked students to draw out their “journey maps.” Students mapped out the high points when they felt encouraged and confident about the career development process, as well as low points when they felt confused or discouraged. Given that the students were overflowing with ideas Jeannie had her work cut out facilitating the group discussion.

Matt Hamilton showing off his flawless dance moves during the icebreaker

Matt Hamilton showing off his flawless dance moves during the icebreaker

The workshop really started to get rolling after the break. Four groups of students, each paired with one IBD team member, began to ideate on potential programming for the new Center. After diverging, we encouraged students to converge around an agreed upon set of programs. The groups came up with a number of creative ideas–everything from a student-run farm, to a marketplace to share student ideas with the private sector, to a cross-faculty idea sharing platform. The groups then presented their ideas and recommendations (Shark Tank style) to PSF leadership. And they weren’t shy about asking questions or challenging each others’ proposed programs. As we closed out the session, we had to cut off half-a-dozen raised hands and ask them to keep the conversation going after the workshop. It was pretty inspiring to see how much energy the students had at the end of the three hours. One of the PSF staff members Patrick remarked afterward, “Our students often feel like their voices don’t matter–they were so happy to have their perspective considered.”

Hans Klinger working with the students as they begin to converge on a program idea for the center

Hans Klinger working with the students as they begin to converge on a program idea for the center

After wrapping up the design workshop, we headed over to the Parliament of Uganda to meet with the Prime Minister, Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda, who just happens to be a Cal Alum. Dr. Rugunda has been a staunch supporter of this new center at Makerere University from the start. Before getting down to business, he was eager to hear which states in the U.S. we hailed from. He was back on campus just a few years ago for a class reunion, which I’m sure made some of his classmates feel unaccomplished. Apparently, Berkeley hasn’t changed much since 1978. He also mentioned there was an East Africa Berkeley reunion in Kampala just a few months ago–pretty cool knowing there’s a Cal Bears community in this part of the world. Before heading out, we gave Dr. Rugunda a Cal pennant as a gift, which we’re sure certain he’ll hang behind his desk, right next to the flag of Uganda.

Left to right: Jeannie Valkevich, Matt Hamilton, Khamisi Musanje (Makerere University), Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda (Prime Minister of Uganda), Carolyn Chuong, Beth Foster, and Hans Klinger

Left to right: Jeannie Valkevich, Matt Hamilton, Khamisi Musanje (Makerere University), Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda (Prime Minister of Uganda), Carolyn Chuong, Beth Foster, and Hans Klinger

More to come from Kampala soon!

Team São Paulo!

EWMBA IBD “São Paulo” is Archana Prasad, Sanat Kamal Bahl, Sireesh Potireddy, and Eileen Treanor. The group was paired with a public Brazilian Software Company to help with an M&A project.  We were based in São Paulo for the two weeks.

Bon gia, Bon gia! First there were four, then there were three and at the last-minute due to the unfortunate events at SFO there were nearly two.  The Team lost Archana to unfortunate Visa issues, meaning she wasn’t able to travel to Brazil and Sanat was delayed with the events at SFO, but thankfully made it in time for Team São Paulo’s first day and presentation to the CFO and direct reports.

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The presentation went well even when the CFO asked us to do additional analysis and provide an updated presentation within 30 mins. It was interesting exploring the office, work environment, and culture.  They work long hours here, and there are banks of coffee machines to keep everybody going. Our client didn’t have a cafeteria so everyday we got to sample a different flavor of local Brazilian cuisine.  What was surprising was the availability of Japanese Cuisine in São Paulo, apparently the largest Japanese community outside of Japan is based here, which explained the availability of really high quality Japanese food.

That evening we took a walk along the famed Paulista Avenue, it feels like the center of  São Paulo, a lively Avenue bristling with shops, restaurants, high-rise office buildings, and locals.  One high-rise building was completely covered in a neon version of the Brazilian Flag.

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Our second day in São Paulo coincided with the city’s national holiday, July 9th, the anniversary of the Constitutionalist Revolution, where there was a large parade of military and police vehicles in the main park in the city that went on for a couple of hours, it was really exciting to see and catch a glimpse of the locals relaxing and enjoying themselves.

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We also got to see another side of Brazilian life when a union protest was scheduled in downtown São Paulo during our first week.  Recent protests had turned violent so our client recommended we work from our hotel, we caught a glimpse of the protests, which had an almost parade like atmosphere, and thankfully the biggest disruption was to rush hour traffic.

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The middle weekend we took a well earned break and the team split up into two groups, Eileen went to Iguazu Falls while the others headed to Rio de Janeiro for the weekend.  Iguazu was truly amazing and a recommended stop for anyone visiting Brazil.  It is truly one of the natural wonders of the world.  Rio was stunningly beautiful with phenomenal views from the top of the Corocovado and the Sugar Loaf.

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After our weekend of adventuring it was back to São Paulo for our last week, we had our big final presentation to the CFO on Friday and it was time to start putting everything together, although there were some late nights we took a break to catch a local soccer derby match where the winners would be crowned Copa Sudamerica, even the atmosphere on the way to the stadium was electric as these two titans of Latin American soccer prepared to face each other.  The famed Pacembu was the venue for the game, it was truly an amazing and thoroughly enjoyable experience.  We had never seen such loyal and enthusiastic support and when Corinthians won in their home ground the stadium erupted in a blaze of fireworks.

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Back to work, and with only two days left the team was burning the midnight oil to get the presentation ready for the CFO on Friday afternoon.

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Nothing could rattle this Berkeley team, even when the client asked us to start the presentation early, we were ready.  Job done, and our IBD experience is almost over, such a fun and unique experience.  Time to get back to reality.

Haas Culture Catches On–Notes to the Dean from Students and Alums

Ajay Kshatriya wrote to Dean Lyons about how Haas Defining Principles yield life lessons even for the very young

When Haas unveiled its Defining Principles back in fall 2010, it was not an announcement of a new direction but an articulation of a culture that already strongly defined Berkeley-Haas.

Kevin, Hill, MBA 07

One example: When Kevin Hill, MBA 07, returned to campus for his 5th reunion, he was so certain the Defining Principles had been in place back then, he bet on it with a classmate. Though he went home with a little less cash, he was glad to know his alma mater was clearly on to something.

From band names to life lessons for newborns, here are a few more stories Dean Rich Lyons has been told in recent months by students and alumni inspired by Haas culture:

Alicia Salmeron, BS 12

Alicia Salmeron, BS 12, reached out to the dean about being contacted by prospective students regarding her Haas experience. “I have never enjoyed writing long emails so much. All I needed to write about was the undeniably powerful culture that is Haas,” wrote Salmeron, now an account manager for Microsoft’s public sector. “The culture really did define my experience and is very much a part of what I bring to my work today.”

Showing the potential staying power of the Defining Principles, Ajay Kshatriya, MBA 11, wrote Lyons in August following the birth of his first child. Ajay had asked friends and family to share three values in life that they thought would be important to little Nikhil. The top three answers: (1) A focus on education, (2) a perspective greater than oneself, and (3) resilience through tough times. That prompted Ajay to write to the Dean: “I realized these represent our core Defining Principles…the Haas culture transcends generations.”

The Dean also heard from a Berkeley undergrad who took Solomon Darwin’s Open Innovation course. At the time, Henry Do, who will graduate in 2013, thought he would become a dentist, but his myriad experiences at Cal have launched him on a broader exploration. He wrote to Dean Lyons that his aim is to “make a larger impact” and to thank the Dean and Haas “for inspiring me to be more than another cog in the world,” adding, “The values I found most influential and inspirational to me (in my time at Berkeley) were the four principles that Haas holds its students accountable for.”

Members of a new full-time MBA band apparently had Haas culture on their minds when naming the group: David Haaselhoff and the Four Chord Principles. Guitarist Michael Nurick, MBA 14, says the name is a look at the ways the band embodies Haas Defining Principles. “We want to serve the Haas community and make it stronger, shatter the stereotype that top business school students can’t also be artists, learn to work as a team in an artistic context, and not take ourselves too seriously, while making this band the best it can be.”

Updates from IBD: India

Namaste from the World Health Partners team!  It’s been almost two weeks since Ken, Jason, Samantha, and I arrived in New Delhi, and we’re eager to share our adventures in this vibrant, diverse, and surprising country.

We arrived a few days early to take in some sights before diving head first into our project for a telemedicine NGO.  Our client had warned us that India would be an assault on our senses, but we were still unprepared for the chaos and clamor that descended upon us as we walked out of the subway station into Old Delhi.  The cacophony of auto rickshaw horns as drivers ducked around the cows in the road, the colorful saris of women balancing impossibly large bundles on their heads, the smell of fried street food mingling with the odor of sewers in the stifling heat – Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Berkeley any more.

Our ambitious plan of visiting all of the main attractions was quickly derailed after we got hopelessly lost among the maze of twisty streets lacking in signage and an auto rickshaw driver dropped us off in the wrong place.  But all was well once we came across Moti Mahal, a famous restaurant chain credited with inventing butter chicken.  Of course we ordered the signature dish, which was excellent, and got some Family Naan to go along with it.

At the end of the day, we finally made it to the majestic Lal Qila, also known as the Red Fort, constructed by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan in the 17th century.  Many of the elegant buildings in this sprawling complex are slowly falling into disrepair, giving the place a haunting, nostalgic feel. But the calm of the gardens was a welcome respite from the bustling street life outside its massive walls.

Just as we were making our way back to the main gate, the skies opened up to a torrential downpour, and we rushed to join the rest of the visitors in a mad scramble for auto rickshaws.  We got home that night drenched, exhausted, but newly exhilarated for more adventures to come.

And in fact our next adventure began at 3 am the next day, when we set out to Agra in the hopes of beating the midday heat and seeing the Taj Mahal bathed in early morning light.  Along the way, we got our fist glimpse of rural life.  From the windows of our climate-conrolled SUV, we saw villagers sleeping on wooden cots just off the highway, likely because it was too hot inside their small mud huts, then getting up with the first rays of the sun to pump water from the nearby well and toil in the dusty fields.  It was a striking contrast to the posh neighborhood in South Delhi where we were staying and to our magnificent destination.  We had expected the Taj to be beautiful from the many photos we had seen, but the timeless elegance of its spender and symmetry was simply breathtaking in person.  Inspired by its quiet grace, we took a moment to find our inner om.

The following week our project work began in earnest. We met with the key leaders from World Health Partners to understand their need for a more efficient process in the telemedicine center and for a reliable way to collect diagnostic laboratory samples from remote rural villages. After months of Skype calls and research stateside, it was very rewarding to meet our contacts face to face and really get an insider’s view of the organization. We also observed doctors in the telemedicine center connecting with rural patients via webcam, even getting remote temperature and blood pressure readings.

After gaining a solid understanding of how the consultation process worked from the Delhi side, it was time to get into the field and see the patient’s perspective. We traveled east to Bihar, the poorest and most rural of the 28 Indian states, where WHP launched its telemedicine program just last year. We spent six days driving from village to village, experiencing first hand the terrible roads, traffic jams, electricity shortages, inconsistent Internet connectivity, and unbearable heat (45° C / 115° F) that make it so difficult to deliver healthcare to these “last mile” areas. Along the way, the WHP field team made sure that we got to sample all of the local delicacies: miniature bananas, curly cucumbers, green mangos, and sweet lychees. The rural telemedicine providers we visited welcomed us into their centers, offering chai and sweets, while we observed consultations from the other end of the webcam.

The week’s research yielded a lot of insights to analyze.

We also had a chance to visit Bodhgaya, where Gautama Buddha is said to have found enlightenment under the Bodhi tree.

Now that we’re back in Delhi, only one week in India remains, but there are still adventures to be had. Will I resist bringing home an adorable baby goat? Will Jason ever get enough mangos? Will Ken find some relief from the heat on our trip to the Himalayan foothills this weekend? Will Sam realize her dream of riding an elephant in Jaipur? Stay tuned to find out!

MBAs Suit Up to Taste Scotch, Raise Funds

Going glam for the evening: Full-time MBA students Adrienne Cademenos, Robbie Bhathal, and Pulak Patel, all MBA 12.

More than 200 Berkeley MBA students–from the Berkeley-Columbia, Evening & Weekend, and Full-time MBA Programs toured Scotland without leaving Haas.

Students from the Evening & Weekend MBA Program share a toast: Michelle Paitich and Mike Han, both MBA 12; and Vanessa Cordero, MBA 14.

One Sunday evening in March, they turned out for the newly-revived Haas tradition of black-tie whiskey tasting. Started years ago by then-professor, now-Dean Lyons and Professor Andy Rose, the new event raised more than $5,000 for Challenge 4 Charity and, as Rose says, “provided a wonderful opportunity to enjoy the pleasures of a fantastically complex drink with friends and colleagues.”

Distilling the essence of a perfect evening: Whisky hand-picked by Rose; libations poured by Program Office staff; and music performed by Dean Lyons on guitar.

Lester Center’s Andre Marquis Addresses Berkeleyside Forum

Andre Marquis, executive director of the Haas School’s Lester Center for Entrepreneurship, served on a March 5 panel on entrepreneurship in the city of Berkeley. The event was hosted by Berkeleyside, a news website for the city.

Marquis, who has experience launching startups in Berkeley, was part of a panel with Judith Iglehart, chief of staff for the Mayor of Berkeley, and Randy Butler, the senior VP of retail banking for Mechanics Bank. Each brought different perspective, but all addressed the conditions that need to be present in order for entrepreneurship to thrive.

Marquis emphasized the importance of building a sense of community and talked about how the university’s new Skydeck, a startup incubator-accelerator based in downtown Berkeley, is fostering just such community for students and recent alumni in search of cross-disciplinary insights. Marquis said a local component to community matters a tremendous amount. “A startup is by nature high-bandwidth and hard to do at a distance. I know that when I work with even one other person, my productivity goes up ten times from being able to bounce ideas back and forth.”

Read more about the Startup Berkeley Forum in this post on Berkeleyside.

 

Haas Will Launch UC’s Summer Institute to Diversify Leadership Pipeline

Berkeley-Haas will inaugurate a new University of California career-building fellowship program this summer for students from historically black colleges and universities. The UC Summer Institute for Emerging Managers and Leaders (SIEML) will bring 25 of these undergraduate students to Haas this summer, with the location rotating to five other UC campuses in subsequent years. Students will receive all-expenses paid fellowships for the intensive program, which they attend for two weeks a year, for two consecutive years.

The news was announced this morning at a press conference in Pasadena, Calif., with Dean Rich Lyons as one of the speakers. “Bottom line: greater diversity of people means greater diversity of thinking and experiences,” said Lyons of the program. “This translates into leaders who are better able to produce the kind of innovation that is creating what’s next,” said Lyons.

Application deadline for the program is March 30. For more info, see the SIEML story in Haas Newswire or visit the SIEML website.

Other Haas initiatives aimed at expanding the leadership pipeline have included the school’s rejoining of The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management and the hiring of Eric Abrams as the school’s first diversity director.

Master of Culinary Invention Seeks MBA Intervention

When famed El Bulli Chef Ferran Adrià spoke at Haas recently, he seemed to take mischievous delight in the puzzlement he causes with his decisions: Curtailing El Bulli’s thriving lunch trade; flouting the sanctity of menus (much to the consternation of Michelin); and, of late, shuttering the world’s most highly acclaimed restaurant to launch a foundation.

It was this new elBulliFoundation that brought Adrià to Berkeley-Haas, one of only five b-schools worldwide whose MBA students have been invited to participate in the “Ideas for Transformation” global MBA challenge competition sponsored by Adrià’s foundation and Telefonica, Spain. The students will develop strategies and models to guide the elBullifoundation in its plans to launch a pioneering center for gastronomic creativity and innovation in Costa Brava, Spain in 2014. “We are willing to hear anything under the sun, Adria told the students. “We are completely open to you.”

Berkeley-Haas students "at-table" with Adrià

“Ferran Adrià’s visit to Berkeley-Haas is an amazing opportunity for the Haas community to help one of the world’s most famous chefs to turn his restaurant elBulli into a foundation that will contribute to society, ” says Iñaki Ruiz, MBA 12, who is from Madrid. “Adrià is definitely in tune with some of the core Berkeley-Haas values, as he goes beyond himself and questions the status quo.”

Learn more about the competition and Adriài’s visit to Berkeley-Haas in this Economist story.

Packaging The Wild: Kruger National Park

Flee at dawn from the sprawling metropolis that spreads from glass skyscrapers in Pretoria to millions of ramshackle tin shacks in Soweto.Drive east into the sunrise, past the tree-lined Joburg suburbs with high adobe walls and electric fences that keep modern living nice and compartmentalized for the lucky ones.Loop along rolling golden hills that could be California except for factories in the background spewing coal into the sky, or steel mines dredging the earth, or paper mills churning out toxic exhaust, or townships choking in thick paraffin clouds.

Get past all that industrialism and find again the primordial bush.It seems elusive in a South Africa struggling with the bloodshed of the past while racing towards the gilded future.Yet in Kruger National Park the wild still clings to survival, awaiting international consumers of prehistory in bite-sized morsels conveniently packaged in football-funded asphalt.

The path to Kruger twists through land where water vapor hangs above rivers like ghostly Mohawks, where the red granite cliffs paint the hills with a thousand faces, where ancient valleys harvest every hue of green.In the Kruger, brush grows thick.Scrub and brambles hide troops of elephants stomping over saplings, or rare rhinos rambling to the next watering hole…

…or giraffes tongue-wrestling spiny acacias and contorting their gangly bodies just to sip a drink.

There the veldt is home to strutting warthogs, cunning jackals, endless birds and herds of grazing impala and kudu and nyala and zebra.Always do the grazers keep one eye open for predators, for the wild teems with packs of hyenas, hides cheetahs in plain sight, and nurtures leopards hunting at dusk (check out one we saw! – link to come when it doesn’t take over 12 hrs to upload a video).Even the big cats seem to prowl with open eyes, wary of the footprint of man.

South Africa seems destined to be sandwiched in change.Certainly, building a stable gateway into Africa will propel the regional economy with a pool of low-cost labor, a growing middle class and increasing global relevance.This economic growth will no doubt supercharge the fight against illiteracy, and political disparity, and pandemics like HIV/AIDS.

But courting development South Africa risks a tragic study in how the wild lands were lost.This is not an African challenge, it is a global challenge.Many nations – particularly developing economies – struggle with balancing the lust for growth with the fear of losing not only precious natural resources, but also a link to what humanity once was, back in the dreamtime.To this end, parks like Kruger are important conservation havens.When our children see Africa, these parks may be all that is left of a land lost in the undertow of progress, and help the next generation learn to live in awe of the wild.

—Stuart Kamin