Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Today in Business Class

Today Business Dude came to give a guest lecture to my OR class. He's not really an OR guy. He's VP of a company that you've heard of and was around all day to talk to a variety of business classes.

He started out by saying that he wanted the session to be interactive and that he was going to ask us questions. After about five minutes into his talk (and only one question to the class), he was in the standard mode of showing PPT slides and lecturing. To be fair, his PPTs did not suck as much as some.

So midway through I asked a question. He was talking about how important it is to recognize when you've made a mistake in business and to go back and fix it. So, of course, I ask about the recent NetFlix debacle. His take: Probably the right decision for NetFlix as a company, but a total PR fail.

Business Dude remained in lecture mode after answering my question. My latest theory is that it is nearly impossible to do something interactive in a room where an image glows on a screen in the front of the room.

At the end two more people asked questions: One woman asked how his company avoids complacency and burnout if the average person has been there for 21 years and there has never been a layoff in the past 12 years in his division. And a guy who didn't really have a question but who just wanted to hear himself talk.