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Make Your Own: a major proposal

Design Strategy


Shay-Jahen D. MerrittĂŠ www.Merritte.com


Why are you proposing this make your own major?


D

uring Prof. Dial’s strategy class during Spring of my first year, I learned that there are three strategies from which companies can gain a competitive advantage: Cost Advantage, Quality Advantage or Differentiation. I was reminded of this when I went to a few career fairs this year and talked to recruiters and noticed their stacks and stacks of resumes. I realized that most of these resumes were saying the same things at the top: their school and then a business function plus the word “Strategy”. Even when talking with students at Fisher, it seems like many people are studying Marketing Strategy or Corporate Finance and Strategy or Operations Strategy and I realized that these majors didn’t really fit me nor did I want to be just another MBA with training just like all of the other MBAs. I decided that I should adopt a differentiation competitive advantage in my education to better fit my personality, expertise and career ambitions. When a recruiter or someone else looks at my resume, I want them to find it interesting enough to continue reading from the top to the bottom. So by putting “Design Strategy” at the top of my resume I am hoping recruiters read further down, to learn more about my work history, activities that I have been involved and hopefully further into Fisher College of Business Question 1

an interview where I could speak more as to what Design Strategy is, and more specifically, what I can provide to their company and the position being recruited for. In addition, my business interests don’t really lie within a specific discipline, I am very interested in all of the different areas that business has to offer, and rather than focus too much on one subject, I have been trying to gain a deep understanding of a few areas that interest me the most, especially areas that I have little background in, like Finance and topics like Mergers & Acquisitions. Finally, I wanted to create my own major to maintain a “whole-brained”, multidisciplinary learning experience. I have always found that I work best when I am learning or doing numerous different things at the same time. I thought that taking classes like Finance and Marketing and then augmenting them with classes in the Design School which make people think in a completely different fashion would give my brain a workout and improve my creative problem solving skills. I don’t want to be type-cast as just a business person or a design person, and I feel that by making my own major, I will be able to be well rounded as a business person, designer and all around human being.

Pick An Advantage Cost

Advantage

Quality Advantage

Differentiation Advantage


What are your career goals?


I

don’t have a specific career goal, which is one of the reasons I decided to pursue an MBA; I didn’t want to just be a designer, I wanted to be well rounded and prepared for whatever happens in my career. What I have learned is that the career I want does not fall within traditional MBA job categories or companies. When I first came to Fisher, I thought that I would go into a traditional MBA role as a brand manager at a large consumer packaged goods company. However the more research that I have done and the more people that I have talked to, I have realized that there are many very exciting career opportunities that I had yet to think of when I first came to Fisher. There of course are logical career journeys as design consultant at well known innovation consulting firms like IDEO or Frog Design, but there are also interesting opportunities that I have learned about only recently, such as working with a private equity firm that participates in mergers and acquisitions to purchase and resurrect dead or defunct brands. But in the end I would like to launch my own creative company after I have worked for a while to consult with companies to research and develop interesting solutions to problems through design thinking. Fisher College of Business Question 2

Shay’s Career Generator: Since my career interests are so diverse, I created ths helpful career generator. Just pick an industry, function, company size and location to create a company where I would be a good fit.

Industry

Function

Company Size

Location

advertising

creative director

5

san francisco

design

consultant

25

seattle

fashion

strategist

50

boston

private equity

entrepreneur

75

new york city

transportation

futurist

100

austin

film/tv

researcher

150

minneapolis

consumer electronics

innovator

250

chicago

gaming

producer

500

washington dc

web development

m&a

750

philadelphia

food

developer

1,000

denver

technology

inventor

1,500

portland

consumer products

analyst

2,500

international

Example: a fashion futurist at a 500 person company in Seattle


Why do the other major options not allow you to accomplish your career goals?


T

raditional major options seem to specialize students and prepare them for specific, traditional MBA career paths like working up the brand manager ladder at a Consumer packaged goods company. The more classes that I have taken at Fisher, the more I have realized that I don’t want that kind of a traditional career path, I don’t want to be perceived as being just a business person. Many of the career opportunities that I am pursuing are with companies and organizations where the term “MBA” carries negative connotations, as someone who adheres strictly to established frameworks and aren’t flexible in their thinking. This differences came to light recently during a design research class I was taking and comparing the future thinking that happens in business and design. In business, future thinking seems to rely heavily on the past to plan for the next quarter or year. Design on the other hand consists of looking at the present to plan for a future that is 5 years or more away. Both of these types of thinking are valid and can help augment one another, and this multidisciplinary thinking can’t be learned by being confined to one specific major. In my career I will be able to be successful by offering the best of design and business thinking at non-traditional and creative companies. Fisher College of Business Question 3

DESIGN THINKING

DESIGN STRATEGY

BUSINESS THINKING

NEW CAREER OPPORTUNITIES


Percentile Core Study Completed

Percentile Major Study Completed

45%

0%

Percentile Total Study Completed

Cumulative Class Hours

Percentile Quarter Discipline Distribution

F Finance

G General

17

%


c

c

F F

4

4

G G F

c

c

c

4

2

FINANCIAL ACCOUNTING Introduces and explains the mechanics of income statements, balance sheets, and cash flows; accounting policy choices; financial statement analysis using fund flows; ratios, quality of earnings, sustainable growth rates, and inflation adjustments. MANAGERIAL ECONOMICS This course approaches microeconomics from a managerial and organizational perspective. The objective is to develop a framework grounded in the fundamentals of economic theory that provides a powerful way of analyzing business problems and developing solutions. ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR An overview of factors that influence individual work performance and techniques to improve it; analytical frameworks for determining the effectiveness of given techniques in specific circumstances within complex organizations. ENHANCING PROFESSIONAL INTERCHANGE This course focuses on using understandings and insights gleaned from observation, research, and reflection to communicate effectively in a variety of formats with diverse audiences. Speaking and writing in multiple contexts will be emphasized. DATA ANALYSIS Introduction to statistical inference and its use in decision making; major emphasis on achieving an application-oriented understanding of regression analysis.

4

Fisher College of Business First Quarter


Percentile Core Study Completed

Percentile Major Study Completed

80%

6%

Percentile Total Study Completed

Cumulative Class Hours

Percentile Quarter Discipline Distribution

F Finance G General

D Design M Marketing

33

%


F F

COST ACCOUNTING Explorers the basic understanding of cost data for inventory valuation; cost data for decision making (pricing, product-mix, make or buy); cost data for performance evaluation and control.

D M G

INNOVATION PRACTICE The purpose of this course is to provide students with the opportunity to develop skills, and understanding of the theory and application of innovation processes and a framework for its commercial uses across various types and formats of businesses.

c

c

e

c

c

2 FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT The development of an understanding of financial terminology, instruments, and foundations for analyzing and dealing with the financial management problems of business enterprises.

4

4

MARKETING MANAGEMENT Focuses on the interrelated elements of the marketing mix, its relationship with the other functional areas of management, and marketing responses to the external environment.

4

4

OPERATIONS MANAGEMENT Introduction to basic operations principles; exploration of major operating problems; strategic and tactical decision making; emphasis on determination of policy for managing productive resources; role of operations manager.

Fisher College of Business Second Quarter


Percentile Core Study Completed

Percentile Major Study Completed

100%

18%

Percentile Total Study Completed

Cumulative Class Hours

Percentile Quarter Discipline Distribution

S Strategy

G General D Design

48

%


G S

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS The purpose of this course is to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the political, economic, social, and technological forces shaping today’s global business environment.

S D

MERGERS & ACQUISITIONS Mergers and acquisitions can provide huge opportunities for value creation, destruction and appropriation. This course presents the opportunity to analyze the mechanisms underlying the creation and destruction of value in mergers and acquisitions from a strategic perspective.

c

c

e

e

4 CORPORATE STRATEGY Introduction to the nature of corporate strategy, development of a conceptual framework for understanding competition in industries, and the factors that shape competitive success or failure.

4

4

4

TRANSDISCIPLINARY DESIGN A seminar on design thinking, co-creation and design futures. Its goal is to provide graduate students with a transdisciplinary learning experience. A hands-on experience, for a mix of people from various disciplines.

Fisher College of Business Third Quarter


Percentile Core Study Completed

Percentile Major Study Completed

100%

48%

Percentile Total Study Completed

Cumulative Class Hours

Percentile Quarter Discipline Distribution

M Marketing

S Strategy G General

67

%


M M

MULTI-CHANNEL MARKETING Addresses development of effective value propositions and results driven messaging through the creation of integrated multi-channel consumer experiences, including the impact of emerging technologies, personalization and changing consumer expectations.

M S G G

BRAND MANAGEMENT This course provides students with insights into how profitable brand strategies can be created and the implications for brand management professionals. It blends marketing theory and practice to provide perspective on corporate marketing and the brand management function.

e

e

e

e

e

e

2

4

2

4

4

CONSUMER BEHAVIOR This course examines various social science theories and research methods (from Psychology, Sociology, Communications, Anthropology, Economics, etc.) as they relate to understanding, influencing, and predicting the attitudes and behaviors of consumers.

ADVANCED STRATEGIC ANALYSIS This course describes conditions under which firms gain and sustain competitive advantages. This is primarily a caseoriented class where we will take class time and thoroughly explore strategic challenges facing firms around the world. STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT OF HUMAN ASSETS The effective deployment of human assets in organizations is widely recognized as critical to successful firms. It is the management of those individuals in a way that is consistent with the goals of the firm that will be the focus of this class. MANAGERIAL NEGOTIATION Explores the major concepts and theories of the psychology of bargaining and negotiation, and the dynamics of interpersonal and intergroup conflicts and their resolution

4

Fisher College of Business Fourth Quarter


Percentile Core Study Completed

Percentile Major Study Completed

100%

74%

Percentile Total Study Completed

Cumulative Class Hours

Percentile Quarter Discipline Distribution

F Finance

M Marketing D Design

83

%


F F

SECURITIES MARKETS This course will equip students with the tools necessary to make good investment decisions. The course is organized around two broad themes. The first theme is the return pattern of different securities. The second theme is the money management industry.

M D D

ADVERTISING & PROMOTION This course has been developed with a theme of ‘understanding how IMC can build and sustain powerful brands.’ The aim of this course is to help acquire brand building skills using IMC.

e

e

e

e

e

4

FINANCIAL MODELING This course will utilize Excel, a spreadsheet program offered by Microsoft, and challenge the student to improve their finance and modeling skills by personally constructing 55 spreadsheet models.

4

4

DESIGN RESEARCH Design as a mode of inquiry, including examination of communication process and models and emphasizing general problem-solving as a goal-directed, value-laden activity.

4

2

INTERDISCIPLINARY MANAGEMENT The multidisciplinary capstone design program option forms a multi-term course sequence that features industrysponsored projects where designers and engineers work together under the direction of graduate business students to complete the project.

Fisher College of Business Fifth Quarter


Percentile Core Study Completed

Percentile Major Study Completed

100%

100%

Percentile Total Study Completed

Cumulative Class Hours

Percentile Quarter Discipline Distribution

S F Finance

D Design

100

%


S F

INTERDISCIPLINARY MANAGEMENT The multidisciplinary capstone design program option forms a multi-term course sequence that features industrysponsored projects where designers and engineers work together under the direction of graduate business students to complete the project.

F D D

FINANCIAL DECISION MAKING Students learn the fundamentals of valuing derivative securities, the issues involved in corporate financing decisions and advanced topics in corporate investment decisions. Mergers and acquisitions are studied and the basics of international finance are developed.

e

e

e

e

e

2

PRIVATE EQUITY The objective of this course is to provide students with an understanding of the nature of the private equity market, the principal participants in this market, and the financial strategies that they employ.

4

4

INNOVATION FIELD PROJECTS This field projects course partners students with companies to work on real-world industry projects centered around creating top line value, using the theories and frameworks developed in class.

4 DESIGN ISSUES Analysis of issues and inquiry into topics of relevance to design: group discussions and investigations of events, processes, manifestations and procedures related to design.

4

Fisher College of Business Sixth Quarter


So in summary, Design Strategy is a custom major that balances the Qualitative with the Quantitative.


Percentile Total Curriculum Discipline Distribution

F Finance

S Strategy

108 Marketing M CREDIT HOURS G D General Design


T

his book was designed and written by Shay-Jahen D. MerrittĂŠ during the Winter of 2011 in Columbus, Ohio to show the faculty and future students at the Fisher College of Business what a balanced multi-disciplinary curriculum could look like. It was typeset in Futura and uses three colors: Cloud in a Blue Sky White; Locomotive Coal Black; and Jurassic Foliage Green. Although primarily designed to be distributed digitally, this book was also produced as a limited edition print piece.

a: 830 Nettle Drive, Columbus, OH 43221 209.877.SHAY www.Merritte.com

Shay@Merritte.com @Merritte

Design Strategy Major Proposal Book  

This book was designed and written by Shay-Jahen D. Merritté during the Winter of 2011 in Columbus, Ohio to show the faculty and future stud...

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