I attended last week’s MBA Roundtable Symposium. And as usual I took lots of notes, some I want to share with MBA News Digest subscribers. If I were to review my notes again, I am sure I would add more content. For those subscribers that attended the meeting, feel free to add your own thoughts and take-aways by clicking on this link: COMMENT
Building Designed for Student Centered Learning
Michigan State University’s Eli Broad College of Business hosted this year’s symposium. One of the memorable activities was the tour of the Edward J. Minskoff Pavilion. The building’s design focuses on collaboration, teamwork, and community which means student centered learning spaces are available for students to use morning, noon, and night. Dedicated on September 27, 2019, this 100,000-square-foot facility was 100% funded by private donations and includes no faculty offices. The following video gives you your own private tour. https://youtu.be/Eh2rla9dzWI
While talking with attendees during breaks, I found several that are planning to retire during 2020. I ask them about succession planning for their departure. Some said the plan was to hire their replacement so there could be overlap. Others said there’s no succession plan. The role of succession planning is more than preparing for program leader or team member retirement. Succession plans have a broader purpose, to find and develop individuals who can replace the person who vacates a critical position by changing jobs, retiring, or dies. My experience is that few B-Schools do this kind of planning. Perhaps more should.
Sponsors, An Untapped Knowledge Base
I talked with many sponsors during the symposium. I learned how forward thinking they are and how much thinking they are doing about the future of GME. My take is they need to predict what will happen in the industry so they can offer products and services that will help GME program leaders and team members achieve their program’s mission and goals. Perhaps we need to view the sponsors as an untapped resource and offer them a way to share their forward thinking. With this in mind, I plan on surveying some sponsors over the next few weeks and following up with another blog article reporting on what I find.
Future of Work
Two speakers from Deloitte, Matthew Alex and Nicole Overley shared their research and perspectives on the future of work. Their comments suggest that the rate of change in the workplace will cause GME program leaders to manage more curriculum change initiatives than ever before and more than most are ready to manage. One group not discussed, faculty and the future of their work.
Michael Maier led the discussion on “The growing role of credentials/badges/certificates in MBA programs and lifelong learning.” If I recall correctly, only two participants were doing anything with badges, etc. What seems lacking is a general framework or understanding of how credentials, badges, certificates, etc. will fit into GME programs. The following article may be useful: https://library.educause.edu/-/media/files/library/2019/7/eli7168.pdf
“A Conversation with Apple: Preparing MBA Students for the App Economy” was an optional session hosted by Apple. Speakers from Apple and Michigan State’s iOS Design Lab was eye opening and enlightening. “The iOS Design Lab is a one-year cohort-based experience around solving community challenges through app development.” Several of us visited the lab at the end of Symposium. During the visit we talked with the students involved in the projects. Learn more about the lab by visiting this URL: http://iosdesignlab.msu.edu/.
The MBA is NOT DEAD!
During several of the sessions, attendees expressed their displeasure with the media declaring the MBA dead. Many said the “Sky is Falling” sensationalism used by the media for headlines is just hype for attracting readers.
Next Year’s Symposium
The University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business will host next year’s symposium in Athens Georgia, October 29-30, 2020.
Share your take-aways by adding a comment below.