Thursday, November 18, 2010

Kelley undergraduate heads to 2010 Business Today International Conference

Kelley School of Business honors student and junior majoring in Finance and Business Economics & Public Policy, Evan Kaufman, was one of 160 students selected to attend the prestigious 2010 Business Today International Conference, Nov. 21-23 in New York City.

Evan was selected from more than 1,000 applicants and was invited to attend an all expenses paid trip to participate in the conference representing the finest business leaders of tomorrow.

This 36th Annual International Conference brings together 70 executives with up-and-coming student business leaders from around the world for three days of keynote speeches, heated panels, executive seminars, and case studies to balance high-profile events with personal interaction and teamwork.

Evan will hear from keynote speakers such as Steve Forbes, President and CEO of Forbes; Bill McDermott, Co-CEO of SAP; and Gaston Caperton, Former Governor of West Virginia and President/CEO of College Board over the course of the conference entitled, "The New Rules of the Game."

The speakers will address topics such as the evolving political environment, the competitive international landscape, and new definitions of success.

Evan is a member of the Kelley School Investment Banking Workshop and is president of the IU Rugby Club team.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Ernst & Young names Justin Greis (BS’03, MBA’04), winner of Chairman’s Values Award

Justin Greis (BS’03, MBA’04), a Senior Manager in the Information Technology Advisory Practice of Ernst & Young, was recently named one of Ernst & Young's three Chairman's Values Award winners in the Americas at a reception hosted by Chairman and CEO James S. Turley.

Justin was recognized for his inspirational personality, his strong passion, and his willingness to devote his time and talent to helping students achieve their best. He serves as professor of information systems at the Kelley School of Business, where he teaches IT Governance, Risk and Controls in the Master of Science in Information Systems (MSIS) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs.

He and his wife Katharine founded the “Ernst & Young, James E. Buckman Memorial Fellowship” in memory of Katharine’s father. The fellowship is focused on providing post-graduate technology educational opportunities to students in the Kelley School of Business MSIS program at Indiana University.

Justin specializes in Strategic Technology Advisory, with a focus on IT governance, helping clients manage risk and realize higher value from their IT investments. Justin has over 10 years of executive and entrepreneurial leadership experience in information technology that includes IT strategy, information security advisory, IT risk advisory, program management, IT governance, and strategy design. As a recruiter at Kelley, he has led more than forty MSIS students to E&Y.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Net Impact shows corporate social responsibility is now mainstream

"Anyone who thinks that they are too small to make a difference has never tried to fall asleep with a mosquito in the room." Gary Hirshberg, CE-Yo of Stonyfield Farm shared this Gandhi quote with the attendees of the 18th Annual Net Impact conference in Ann Arbor this weekend. It perfectly captures my sentiments when the Kelley Net Impact Graduate chapter was recognized as the chapter with the highest increase in conference attendance nationally! In addition, The undergraduate IU chapter was also recognized as a runner up for the undergraduate chapter of the year. Despite smaller in size when compared to other MBA chapters, the efforts, passion and commitment of the Kelley Net Impact members have certainly shown great results!

The conference consisted of over 350 speakers, several keynote sessions, multiple tracks and a career expo. I was personally impressed to see the diversity of firms in attendance including BCG, Microsoft, Walmart and Teach For America; these distinct organizations were all recruiting to attract socially aware and focused business leaders. The conference was not only inspiring but also empowering and I walked away with some incredible contacts whom I hope will become mentors in the future. Net Impact and its mission has transitioned from questioning whether businesses should care to how to enable businesses to care about social causes. Similarly, growing from an idea that attracted a few students, it has grown to be a powerful movement that attracted 2500 students and professionals to the conference. Rather than something on the fringe, corporate social responsibility is now a mainstream concern. The conference provided me with several opportunities to meet fellow Net Impacters, practitioners, recruiters, new hires and CEOs! I was blown away by this amazing network of passionate individuals all working to create a better sustainable world.

It was an amazing experience and I look forward to the next conference, October 28-29, 2011 in Portland, Oregon. Thanks to all the Kelley Net Impacters who attended and made the 2010 conference such a success!

Guest blog entry by Neha Kale, 2011 Kelley MBA Candidate, President MBA Net Impact Chapter

Scrubbing Bubbles in the slums of Nairobi

I’ve just completed my first breakout session at the 2010 Net Impact Conference and it was fantastic. It definitely gave me a better understanding of the role that MNCs play in developing the Base of the Pyramid (BOP). It was an awesome, interactive discussion, entitled, “Engaging the BOP: A Closer Look at Business in Africa”. Essentially the S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc. company, maker of consumer cleaning products under such brands as Scrubbing Bubbles, Mr. Muscle, Windex and Pledge, is engaging in development efforts in the Kibera slum in Nairobi , Kenya with mixed success. Apartments in the slum have communal bathrooms on each floor that are otherwise pretty squalid. The company is working to train teams of cleaners who would market their cleaning services to the residents of the apartments and would use S.C. Johnson cleaning products. The idea is to help these cleaning teams grow their business to the level that S.C. Johnson can meet its fixed cost investment in training and marketing the groups and begin to turn a profit. They challenged us in the session to identify ways that the company can make this venture more advantageous for the people of Kibera AND make it profitable for the company in the reasonable short-term.
Jimmy Bettcher, Rob Herrick and I paired up with two students from the University of Oregon and one student from Yale to brainstorm key issues. We considered innovative ways for the cleaning services to advertise; whether the pricing structure for the services (and for the S.C. Johnson products) needed to be adjusted; whether the residents of the Kibera apartments needed more education on the health benefits of clean/hygienic toilets; whether the ability-to-pay and willingness-to-pay of the residents is adequately understood; and whether there is an adequate linkage between the services provided by the cleaning teams and the S.C. Johnson brands that are being used by the teams. Once we all reconvened to share our questions and ideas, the S.C. Johnson representative really took all of our comments to heart and complimented the new ideas that we all came up with.
In addition to this case example, S.C. Johnson also has an effort in Ghana to improve pest control and reduce the spread of malaria. The company offers several consumer product solutions for pest control, like Raid and Off. We didn’t have enough time to brainstorm ideas on this business issue, but the key issues they are dealing with in this effort are: not trumping or harming the progress that NGOs and agencies like USAID have already made in the area of mosquito netting; the location and distance between villages in Ghana complicates distribution and limits the impact of “Word of Mouth” advertising; and making sure solutions offered are truly affordable and that the products get used in the appropriate way (since they are chemicals with active ingredients that have specific methods of use).
It was so interesting to hear about the efforts of an MNC in the area of building the BOP and hearing about the challenges they face. While the company is ultimately involved because they believe there is untapped market potential in Africa, I appreciated the company’s sensitivity to really trying to find a win-win solution in these societies to enable them to develop and grow through entrepreneurship. This session was a great way to kick-off my experience at the Net Impact Conference. I am so excited to see what else I’ll learn!

Guest blog entry by Debbie Papiernik, 2011 Kelley MBA Candidate, Indiana University