Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Shawn's Graduation Speech

Shawn’s Graduation Speech for the GSU
Global Partners MBA Class of 2008

The four things I learned from my MBA program.

1. I’ve developed a physical dependency on PowerPoint.
2. I learned a new language.
3. I learned that anything worth learning can be conveyed in a chart
4. I learned to take existing models, charts, concepts and ideas and apply them to new sets of data.

I have elected to not simply tell you about these new competencies, but also to demonstrate them to you during the course of this speech. Item number one, my adeptness at PowerPoint that has been carefully honed over the course of the program, is best illustrated by the creation of this presentation. Number two is that I have learned a new language. To enter the global partners program, it is a prerequisite to know another language besides English. We were told that this was so that we would be able to quickly adapt and understand in the cultures and countries that we visited as part of the program. But we were lied to.

The REAL reason is that our professors wanted to make sure we would be able to learn a brand new language: the language of business. As MBA students, we have learned a brand new language, complete with its own vocabulary. I apologize to those who are in attendance who have not yet learned this language, because I would like to deliver the next segment of my speech in b-school-ese.

“4Q and 1600 ICH ago,
We determined that the FV of our WACC
Could be improved by exchanging CA for FA
and leveraging our IP.

After a SWOT analysis of our OTB,
We chose an MBA with GSU in the program called GP.
In Oct. 07 in CS 600, the Cof’08 began.
We met P-Y and KDL. And also Robin M.

We learned Econ and Pol Strat, Comm Dip and Int Bus,
Bus Law and Bus Mark, and Cost and Info Sys
In our IT class we read how HDVD
Would go DOA thanks to PS3
And in P-Y’s Ops class at IAE
We learned to streamline Mfg using JIT

We saw RDJ and flew to CDG
We changed our USD into RMB
In PRC we toured the BOG,
Then grabbed some US food at MickeyD’s

After all that, we’re back at GSU
Here in ATL with 1 thing to do,
To cross the stage and receive our degrees
And add 3 new letters to our CVs.”

The third thing that I learned was that anything worth learning can, and SHOULD, be communicated quickly and easily with a graph or chart. I would like to demonstrate the truth of that too you with a few examples.
· A Pie Chart About Pie
· A SWOT Analysis of the SWAT
· The f(x) = excitement x effort
· The Brown Cloud and
· The Classic Marketing Matrix

The fourth thing that I learned was how to apply existing models and analysis to new data sets to reveal new patterns and models. I feel that this skill can be accurately demonstration by taking the comedic model of Jeff Foxworthy’s “You Might Be a Redneck” and applying it to our own particular data set.

You might be a GPMBA…
1. If you’ve ever tried to calculate your student loan debt in Euros.
2. If you know the right way to pronounce “Strategy” and “Tactic”
3. If you’ve ever used the word “widget” to describe a theoretical product line.
Or if you’ve ever looked up the translation for “widget” in French or Portuguese.
4. If you’ve ever checked with a fellow student to know not only what class you have tomorrow, but what country it’s in.
5. If you’ve ever sat in a class taught in English and had to think “What language am I hearing?”
6. If you’ve ever lost 150 thousand dollars in a virtual margin call on the virtual stock market.
7. If you’ve ever accidentally started a nuclear war in Brazil or depleted the world’s oceans of their fish population.
8. If you’ve ever spent more than 8 hours in the DC airport. Twice.
9. If you’ve ever begun a question with the phrase “I was reading in the Wall Street Journal…”
10. If you’ve ever bragged that your new suit was made in China
Finally, If you’ve studied 20 subjects across 4 continents and traveled around the entire world in 432 days as part of your international business education…

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