Wednesday, June 06, 2007

MBA Review Part V

So we've reached the final part, the classes that I excelled in. Not necessarily the best classes, though there is some overlap, but these are the areas where if an employer would ask where my strengths are I would need to start.

  • 4. Brand Management and Strategy
  • 3. Economics for Managers
  • 2. Consumer Behavior
  • 1. Managing Behavior in Organizations

Those that know me from undergrad would be surprised to see Economics up there considering how much I learned to hate the subject at UEA. The course was taught really well here though and reminded me why I chose it as an undergrad major in the first place. The two professors (one for micro, one for macro) concentrated on how people act with regards to economic forces and used that as a starting point, then went straight from there to how these economic forces apply to businesses. There was also a large section on game theory, which is always fun.

Brand Management was taught by a new arrival at UW, Professor Thomas O'Guinn from the University of Illinois. O'Guinn is well known for his work on Brand Communities and the course revolved around that concept. Control of the brand is with the community of users. Brand management in this case is an oxymoron. It's more like brand stewardship. The goal of a brand manager should be to make sure that the brand and everything associated with it is true to the users. The only way to do that effectively is to keep close contact with said users which is great for people in my line of work.

Which leads to Consumer Behavior. Consumer Behavior is my class. I loved every minute of it. If I had to take only one class at UW I would take that one. Go Professor Mitchell.

The number 1 class for me at UW-Madison? Managing Behavior in Organizations. To be honest as a class it was a bit haphazard and from the very beginning it suffered from the disdain of the quant jocks who saw it as a waste of time and a bunch of pseudo-scientific mumbo-jumbo. I on the other hand soaked it in. I aced every assignment, I covered every reading ahead of time, even the optional ones, I took the lead on all the team assignments (which we aced).

To conclude, this should be the last post on my MBA experience. It's not been easy, but nothing worth doing is. It has definitely been worth doing though. I've learned a lot, made a lot of friends, and come out with a job I would never have earned without the degree.

Onwards to the real world.

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