Alberta Deans of Business Case Competition 2018
The 13th annual Alberta Deans of Business Case Competition took place March 22 to 24 in Edmonton. The Chiu School of Business team included Business Administration Diploma students Mei-Hui Wang, Mimi Tang, Tate O'Dwyer, Elena Fuertes Vegas, and Janelle Flores. This year, the 13 competing teams analyzed an exclusive business case for a local Adventure Company that runs tours and Segway rentals in Edmonton and Calgary.
To prepare for the challenge, the team met twice a week starting in January. “I wouldn’t have guessed how much time and effort was required. It was like taking another course. Nevertheless, I would definitely do this again,” acknowledged Tate. At the challenge, each team spent nine hours in a war room analyzing the problem, brainstorming strategy, and building their presentation before returning the next morning for presentations.
Upon reflection, each member acknowledged that the most challenging aspect of the competition was in their individual attempts for excellence as they described themselves as passionate high achievers. “I had to let go of what I thought perfection looked like and be open to seeing things differently. The concept of excellence was different to each one of us,” says Elena. Mei wants to learn to be more comfortable in the uncomfortable moments. “I’m always prepared and because you can’t predict every outcome, I need to learn to trust myself when I don’t have the answers prepared.”
Their advice to future teams is two-fold. With regards to building a strong team, “know your unique strengths and focus on them,” says Janelle. Elena adds that “difficult conversations aren’t easy, but they helped us move forward. This required active listening, trust, and understanding everyone’s perspective.” At the competition, “focus your thoughts and focus your energy on the final presentation. You need to funnel the brainstormed concepts into your recommendation,” advises Elena.
The final piece of advice, “Enjoy it,” maintains Mimi. “The best part is the new lifelong friendships we’ve gained.”