There is a reason why we equate our teachers to Gods. They are more intelligent and talented than most of the icons and stalwarts in the corporate world and yet they are proud and content to be churning out more of them! The Kelley MBA program is gifted with some of the best teaching minds in the country. Today we had one last chance to listen to them again. But this time they were teaching us the lesson of life!
It was Rockney who first Mo Mo’ed his way into the classroom. He said he had no agenda. I think he was not supposed to. Today we just wanted to listen! He started off with an accounting concept. (btw.. he teaches Marketing!) Has anyone heard of FILO? I hope Jamie Pratt doesn’t hear that! Sure marketers don’t know their numbers! Well, what he meant was that we should be the first one to enter the office and the last one to leave. He had more advise but the gist was to go out and have fun. I just love him for what he is: an absolute blast! Life is so simple when you are happy!
Phil Powell was at his animated best. I had one last time to see him go airborne. For an American, he was quite candid as to how America is no more the place for big opportunities and how by 2016 China would become the biggest economy while still being in a phase of Economic Takeoff. Unbelievable! I was really thrilled (and happy with myself) when he laid out his prediction of where the next biggest growth opportunities would be: AFRICA! Bingo! I guessed it right. (unless he is wrong as well!) It is time to embrace the emerging markets.
But his best advice was: “Don’t blow away your signing bonus and buy a brand new car”. I totally agree. The beast depreciates by about 15% the moment you drive it out of the showroom! I love economists!
It was shocking to see Shockley get emotional. Ironical (but very sweet!) for a guy who is generally stoic and doesn’t believe in farewells and that kind of stuff. Think about it. I have had just 8 core professors while he would have probably had more than 800 students by now. But by the end of his speech, he had a tear in his eye while I didn’t which reminded me of how insensitive I had become. I was ashamed at myself for a moment. For a guy, who taught the most complex concepts in the simplest and most elegant way, he deserved more than a drop of my tear!
Finally it was Cattani who helped me with glycerin. I was able to peep inside the heart of a guy who revels in Dilbert cartoons. I was able to feel the pain and anguish of 10 years of hard work and perseverance reduced to ashes by one word: “tenure”. But more than that I was rendered speechless by his spirit to brave it all and be what he is today. Life is a battle which you never lose unless you choose to!
Next up was Mr. Devil Duck! That by the way is Matt Semadeni. He had the last word for us and it was fitting in every respect. “I want all of you to be successful. But more than that, I want you to be happy”. Simple but powerful!
These guys gave us the toughest and best 4 months of our MBA lives. And today they left us with wisdom for the rest of our lives. Love you! Miss you!