Reflections from a Practitioner – The Value of Management Cases
by Michel El-Khoury, MBA ’12 (3/12/14)
When reflecting upon skills utilized on a daily basis as a Management Consultant, many are traced back to experiences developed during the Consulting Program at Johnson. Among the opportunities provided by the Program to aspiring consultants, I found Nate Peck’s Management Cases course to be the most impactful.
Management Cases help aspiring business leaders achieve two critical skillsets. Solve complex, real-world business challenges by applying critical strategic and analytical skills, and inspire action by developing compelling, board-level communications.
Three key elements made the course particularly impactful to me including its content, structure and the people who drove it. Course content achieves the first objective. Students think critically and apply strategy and finance concepts learned in core courses to solve a series of ten business cases from a variety of industries. Complementing the course content, partners from top consulting firms and industry executives regularly participate in the learning process. Speakers share business problems that their clients or organizations faced and how they went about solving them. I found the breadth and depth of the curriculum ideal for general management training.
The genius of the course, in my opinion, lies in its structure and delivery. Students are expected to be prepared to present at every session. The fun part… the instructor keeps students on their toes by randomly selecting a handful to present a single slide from their deck at each session. Entertainment value aside, this method helped refine my ability to develop slides that stand on their own, an invaluable asset in consulting.
The instructor, a former Management Consultant, brings more than twenty five years of experience advising Fortune 500 leaders. His insights, coupled with peer advice of teaching assistants, provide comprehensive and actionable feedback to students. Through its structure and the people who drove it, the course achieves its second objective.
Content, structure, and people work collaboratively throughout Management Cases to provide a uniquely comprehensive learning opportunity, offering both substance and business communication feedback in one venue.
Personal experiences over the past few years, coupled with the benefit of hindsight, affirm the value Management Cases contributed to my professional growth. As a Management Consultant, I routinely apply business concepts, thought-structuring techniques, and presentation tactics sharpened during the Consulting Program. If you are an aspiring consultant or general management professional, I urge you to take advantage of this exclusive opportunity.