Quick Reflection on Winter Break and Case Competitions


Whew! Can’t believe February is almost over…it feels like we’d just returned to campus from winter break. It’s been a while since my last post on this blog and saying a lot has happened is an understatement. Most of my classmates participated in amazing treks that took them to Brazil, India, Colombia, and many parts of Southeast Asia. I personally stayed within the continental United States and got to bond with my classmates via a trip to New York City; the LA career trek that took us to visit studios and digital media and entertainment firms; and a trek to New Orleans, where we worked with a local startup through Idea Village, a nonprofit that nurtures local entrepreneurs.

We’re just past the halfway point for spring A and recruiting is in full swing here on campus. It’s been terrific seeing all of my dedicated classmates working hard to pursue the right summer internship, while juggling their busy schedules to help plan cultural events, conferences, and participate in various case competitions. I’d like to highlight one of the case competitions—the 2012 Sony Marketing Strategy Case Competition at the Sony Electronics’ North American headquarters in San Diego, CA. I traveled to Southern California with two of my classmates. This competition was interesting not only because we got to work on a real marketing strategy case for a company that has gone through some rough times in recent years, but also because we didn’t get to choose our own teams. The competition organizers dictated the teams, which were comprised of MBA students from programs all around the country, so we had to develop a rapport and team chemistry in less than two days!

In a short amount of time, teams had to think hard about issues such as how to make the products and services in question more intuitive and how to improve the overall retail experiences for customers. Our goal was to create a plan for the case protagonist that is actionable and specific—something they can start implementing when they return to work on Monday. Of course these recommendations had to be backed up with solid data analysis and research.

By developing a great working relationships with people from other MBA programs, while using the tools and frameworks that we’ve learned in courses such as Problem Finding-Problem Solving (PFPS), the three of us representing Haas won 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places for our teams! We’re excited and humbled by the results and it was a tremendous learning experience for the three of us.

For more information, please refer to the post from the Haas Newswire: http://haasachieves.wordpress.com/2012/02/13/winning-approaches-sony-sony/

I want to congratulate all of my classmates once again who have participated and won prestigious prizes in other case competitions around the country! It’s an honor to be your classmate and I look forward to seeing more success stories in the coming days!

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