My Portfolio

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Part III - Emotional Management

Part III - Emotional Management

“I don't want to be at the mercy of my emotions. I want to use them, to enjoy them, and to dominate them.”

Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray 

Case competitions can be very emotionally intense and stressful. Even after all the public speaking experience I've accumulated over the years, the moment before each presentation is still filled with anxiety. Not only that, but team discussions can become very emotionally charged as you challenge each other ideas and the pressure of time. I typically feel stressed at the beginning of the competition and it only continues to increase over the next few days. Learning how to handle your own emotions is a crucial part of ensuring that you perform at the level you need to win. 

Everyone has their own ways of dealing with emotions and I'll be sharing mine with you.

Part II - Preparing for case competitions; How to learn everything you need to win a case competition

Part II - IT Knowledge for Case Competition

Not understanding IT enough to compete would be the first fear and challenge I needed to overcome. However, this is probably the easiest hurdle to overcome as all you need to develop is a habit of 'continuous professional development'.  You can learn everything you need to know to compete if you give yourself enough time to learn it all. Approaching it like a final exam is the wrong approach for a case competition. In the competition you are supposed to be applying what you know, not learning new concepts.

Ask your coach or professor for material to read and I'm sure they can feed you dozens of great white papers to learn from. What was important though in the deluge of all the reading I was provided with was learning how IT solved business problems. The technical details of how it all works is of secondary importance as you can figure it out through further reading or research. What is important is to learn and memorize how IT can or has been used to solve different business problems. That way when your identifying critical issues in cases your mind will instantly start recalling solutions that have worked for other companies in the past. Knowing that your using a similar solution that worked for a real life previous company can also give you that presentation confidence.

But there is so much to learn !

 To streamline your learning though for competitions I recommend you start with the top 10 trends of the year for what ever area of business you are competing in. For me it was in IT and I refereed to Gartners top 10 CIO Business and Technology Priorities in 2013.

Part III on emotional management can be read here.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Part I - How to win Case competitions

In total I've competed in four case competitions and this post will be about what I've learned from the experiences.I'll be focusing on what you can do as an individual to prepare as opposed to team. Recently I've managed to win 1st place in my third global IT case competition together with Larisa Gordetsky and Natasha Campbell. Interesting enough I'm majoring in Entrepreneurship and not MIS or any IS program. Regardless we've managed to have a very successful track record