President of the Strategic Board, Grenoble Ecole de Management; and Special Advisor of the President of AACSB for Europe, spoke about his own personal experience in industry and how he came to discover Peter Drucker. He began the discussion with his favourite Peter Drucker quote:
“The purpose of the enterprise is to create value and there are therefore two functions that matter… Innovation and marketing create value and all the others are costs.”
During the holiday I had a very pleasant surprise. Over the last 2 years I have looked at other blogs when writing my own to get ideas and inspiration. One of the best blogs I have seen in higher education is written by Martha Graham at James Madison University. We had both left several messages on each other’s blog (which included me stupidly calling Martha “Graham” for the first couple of months!) Even though we have never had the chance to meet we have had many exchanges over the past year or so.
Martha had written an excellent article on Bob Reid, former Dean at JMU and who is now Executive Vice President and Chief Accreditation Officer AACSB. Bob and I met up at the EFMD Annual Conference 2013 in Brussels and I send Martha the photo never expecting her to publish an article on it! I am very flattered indeed by what she has said.
An article in “The Economist” this week discusses research that shows the more time people spend on Facebook the less happy they are. Like Martha, I totally agree with this. However, technology today means that we can communicate with people without ever meeting up and I have been delighted to have many exchanges with Martha. As she says, we have become friends without ever seeing each other.
There is another positive side. In her article, Martha refers to a friendly bet that we had concerning Greenland. Because of that, I did some quick research and was lucky enough to stumble upon a wonderful blog called The Fourth Continent. This is written by a lady who has emigrated to Greenland and gives some amazing insights into life there. I have become an avid reader of her blog which is quite a unique blog and well worth a read. So even a friendly challenge with someone you have never met can have a positive effect.
The start of the coming academic year will be a little different for me this September, so I have asked a member of my team to begin writing another blog to take up some of the themes I have explored over the past two years. “Mainly International” will begin publishing in just over a week. When my colleagues and I started talking about the layout and the themes, I first asked them to look at the one Martha writes. My basic message was that I wanted the blog to be as good as “Be the Change.” That is just how highly I regard the blog. Not only does Martha write quite beautifully, the warmth and the attachment she feels towards students, staff and other members of the JMU community is quite evident. It makes it great reading.
So, many thanks to Martha, not only for this post but also the the inspiration you have provided me in writing over the past year or so. I am sure that you provide the same inspiration to many other as well.
James Madison University's Be the Change
Go to any discussion board about social media or modern communication and you’re bound to find comments about the dismal state of interpersonal communication. Parents decry watching their children and friends sit side-by-side texting each other instead of talking face-to-face. And who among us has not doubted that one person can have 986 friends?
While the discussion is valid, it’s also worth noting that adaptation is a significant component of change. And what we are experiencing in the fast-changing realm of communication requires — demands, actually — an adaptation.
As a devotee of handwritten letters, I love getting real letters in my real 3-D mail box. Much history has been recorded by such letters. I’m reading a book by Dava Sorbel (Galileo’s Daughter) based on letters written to Galileo by his daughter. I’ve also written here about Dorie McCullough Lawson’s book (Posterity) a compilation of letters from…
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Commissioned by EFMD and Emerald, this book is an analysis of thirty-nine interviews of key stakeholders in management education. It sets out some of the major issues and talking points, taking the reader through the history of management education to ongoing challenges. Many of these issues are not new, such as the role and value of research, the relevance of teaching done in the classroom, and links to the corporate world. Criticisms of business schools have been ongoing over the past ten years, most notably from within the industry. In 2005, Chris Grey of Warwick Business School argued that they have become just finishing schools for elites to prepare them for well-paid positions in finance and consulting.
At the AACSB ICAM 2013 Conference, Elaine Eisenman, Dean of Babson College, and Kai Peters, Chief Executive of Ashridge Business School, set out some of the main issues in executive education today. Peters described the period as being one of the “most Schumpeterian times for executive education” and business schools in general. The presentation entitled “The Ideal, the Real, and the Deal” first dealt with some of the key misconceptions concerning education.
At the AACSB ICAM 2013 Conference, Tony Wagner, Innovation Education Fellow at Technology & Entrepreneurship Center at Harvard, talked about the learning gaps that are affecting students across the world, and gave some strategies for how to prepare them for the new global knowledge society.
“I am always looking for cool pictures.” said Sheena Iyengar at the end of her excellent presentation on how to “Lead by Choice”. The quote was all the more remarkable in that the director of the Global Leadership Matrix (GLeaM) at Columbia Business School is totally blind. The objective of the talk was to highlight “what effective leaders need to know about choice” and how you can choose your way to success. Indeed, there is so much information available that it has become imperative today to know how to choose.
At the AACSB Annual Conference in Chicago, Dr. Michael Williams from Pepperdine University gave an excellent, practical talk on some of the strategies we can adopt for using different social media efficiently in our jobs. Dr. Williams recognizes that “we are all trapped in a high flow information world” and struggling to cope with all the different media forms that exist. The meeting was organized by the Associate Deans Affinity Group and was attended by 70 delegates.
This book caused quite a stir when it was first published and perhaps not surprisingly since it is an “insider’s account” of why business schools have never gained the respectabilty they have searched for over the past century. Rakesh Khurana is a Harvard Business School professor whose book came at an end of a decade of a great deal of criticism of business schools that came mostly from within. That was just before the current financial crisis. Since the beginning of this crisis those criticisms have continued to grow.
Millennials Incorporated: Our Student Cohort
At the AACSB Associate Deans Conference in Houston, Texas, Andrea Hershatter, Senior Associate Dean at the Goizueta Business School, Emory University gave a wonderful presentation about the Millennial Generation. It was such a rich, entertaining and well researched talk, that it really would be difficult to do it justice in a short blog. (And no, I’m not her agent!) This short article sets out some of the main ideas, but if you get the chance I highly recommend that you go and see her speak.