AFBP earns international honor

 

Sherri Noxel
Sherri Noxel

The Austin Family Business Program in Oregon State University’s College of Business has been selected as the 2015 recipient of the Family Firm Institute’s Interdisciplinary Achievement Award.

“This prestigious award is the pinnacle of achievement in the field and we are pleased to name the Austin Family Business Program as its recipient for 2015,” said Judy Green, president of the institute, which is the leading association worldwide for family enterprise professionals.

Established in 1999, the Interdisciplinary Award recognizes outstanding achievement in the advancement of interdisciplinary services to business families. It is the highest professional honor presented by the Family Firm Institute, which provides research-based learning and relevant tools for advisors and consultants, academics and family enterprise members to drive success.

“We’re thrilled to receive this recognition from FFI that honors our commitment to delivering quality education to family businesses,” said program director Sherri Noxel. “It’s particularly special for us because 2015 is our 30-year anniversary.”

Founded in 1985, the Austin Family Business Program provides inspiration, education, outreach and research to support the success and survival of family businesses.

The program works with family business advising practitioners and consultants to design educational programs to prepare family businesses to balance the well-being of the business, the family and individuals, Noxel said.

Noxel will accept the award on behalf of the program at the FFI Gala Awards Dinner in October in London.

Family Firm Institute logo

Boeing Day busy for reps, students

Sierra Makepeace of Boeing, left, talks with pre-graphic design student Hannah King at Boeing's booth in the MU quad.
Sierra Makepeace of Boeing, left, talks with pre-graphic design student Hannah King at Boeing’s booth in the MU quad.

Representatives from Boeing, corporate partner of the College of Business, were on campus May 14 for Boeing Day, a series of workshops and informational events aimed at helping Oregon State students learn more about the aerospace giant and job opportunities at the company.

On hand were Brad Stevenson, a college recruiter; Sierra Makepeace, who works in business operations; Matt McMahen, finance; and Kalan Guiley, continued airworthiness manager for twin-aisle airplane programs and commercial airplanes.

Comprising Boeing Day were two separate resume workshops (in the Kelley Engineering Center and Austin Hall), a mid-day information table in the Memorial Union quad, and an evening information session in Austin Hall.

Sophomore Hannah King, a pre-graphic design student, and graduating senior Matthew L. Bautista, a management major, were among the throng of students to drop by Boeing’s booth in the quad.

“I wanted to see what the opportunities were, and I definitely got information that I want to check out,” King said.

Bautista is a former Air Force mechanic who now works in human resources in Portland for the Oregon Air National Guard in addition to attending OSU. He’s interested in HR or career development work with Boeing and is grateful for how his studies and professional life are propelling each other forward.

“I take what I learn in Austin and apply it to my professional life and personal life, and I take what I learn there and apply it here,” he said. “There’s a good synergy going on.”

Boeing, founded in Seattle in 1916 and now based in Chicago, is the world’s largest aerospace company and serves customers in 150 countries.

 

Logistics is big business

Randy Eck explained that "moving stuff" makes up 11 percent of the global gross domestic product.
Randy Eck explained that “moving stuff” makes up 11 percent of the global gross domestic product.

Think logistics is no big deal in terms of the global economy?

Think again.

Randy Eck, director of supply chain technology solutions for Intel, told MBA students May 12 that roughly 11 percent of the world’s gross domestic product is logistics: “just moving stuff.”

That percentage translates to $9 trillion – 25 times as much as the $350 billion accounted for by the semiconductor industry, Eck said.

Eck and another member of Intel’s Customer, Planning and Logistics Group, Cliff Parrish, gave an evening presentation in Austin Hall’s Robert Family Events Room regarding Intel’s approach to supply chain management. Parrish is the company’s product and customer data manager.

Eck and Parrish’s group handles the transportation and warehousing of the materials Intel needs. For a company of Intel’s size and scope, the responsibility is big business to say the least. If supply chain efficiencies result in even a 1 percent increase in gross margin, that means an additional $500 million in revenue, Parrish noted.

Those efficiencies can be gained, Eck pointed out, through moves as simple as giving truck drivers instruction on how to shift gears in ways that require engines to use less fuel.

A fundamental issue logisticians must deal with, the pair told the students, is balancing service with effective cost management.

Parrish provided an outline for successful strategizing, which begins with the vision to see what success is. From there comes the development of goals and objectives and an “environmental scan” to determine what obstacles are in place. Next comes making a strategy, and following that is “strategic exploration” to see if there’s an even better strategy out there than the one you’re using. Then you need a roadmap for executing the strategy and ways to measure performance. And communication is the oil in the engine – without it, nothing happens.

Other topics the pair touched on included the “Internet of Things” – the ever-growing collection of smart devices that share data with one another to create systems of systems – and Moore’s Law.

Moore’s Law is a 1965 prediction by Intel co-founder Gordon Moore that transistor size would be cut in half every two years, doubling the computing power of an integrated circuit while vastly improving its performance and efficiency. Fifty years later, the prediction has so far proven true.

Cliff Parrish noted that without communication, any strategy will fail.
Cliff Parrish noted that without communication, any strategy will fail.

Putting it in perspective, if a Volkswagen Beetle had improved at the same exponential rate as microchips, the car would now be capable of 2 million miles per gallon and 300,000 miles per hour.

Adidas: A culture of empowerment

adidas logoA culture built around honesty, commitment, passion, innovation, inspiration, teamwork, empowerment and student engagement has earned adidas this year’s Distinguished Business Partner award.

That culture is in sync with that of the College of Business, adidas executive Nic Vu said.

“The professors and other educators focus on placement,” said Vu, a senior vice president and a 1995 College of Business graduate who spearheaded his company’s partnership with the college. “College of Business students are very well versed in team dynamics, group projects and results orientation, and they’re open to learning.

“I work with lot of Ph.D.’s and consultants who have master’s, MBAs, whatever, and they don’t have all of that packaged together as well as some of the undergrads I see coming out of Oregon State,” he said. “That’s a compliment to the dean and all the educators at Oregon State.”

Beavers who have joined Vu at adidas have taken note of a supportive environment that mirrors that of the college that prepared them to launch their careers.

“The College of Business stresses networking and adidas allows recent grads to take networking to an entirely new level,” said OSU senior Jacob Knightley, who’s majoring in finance and business information systems and works 30 hours a week for adidas’ finance reporting team.

“All managers — junior, senior and above — are extremely approachable and will take time out of their day to talk with you. My CFO walks around and talks with everybody on a first-name basis and will make the effort to learn your name as soon as possible.”

Knightley said he and others consider the adidas culture to be an extension of their university life.

“We make sure our work is getting completed to the best degree, but we have fun while we do it,” he said. “Adidas benefits (from the College of Business partnership) by getting great local talent who bring new and fresh ideas about how to win in America, and the college benefits by having a local company that loves to recruit local talent.”

Adidas will be honored May 11 in Portland at the college’s annual Celebration of Excellence, along with the rest of the 2015 award winners as well as retiring Dean Ilene Kleinsorge.

The evening begins with a reception at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner and the awards presentation. For more information or to register, contact Elsa Frey at elsa.frey@oregonstate.edu or call 541-737-6648, or register online at http://business.oregonstate.edu/awards.

 

Willener: COB students poised to soar

Curt Willener.
Curt Willener.

The College of Business prepares people to measure up against the best, says Curt Willener, this year’s Distinguished Early Career Business Professional.

The Hillsboro resident should know. Three years after his OSU graduation, he was accepted into the MBA program at Harvard Business School.

“OSU was on my list, but since I’d gone there as an undergraduate, I wanted a new experience,” who at the time was working at a mill in Albany. “I had just gotten done with a super dusty, 14-hour shift when I talked to (Dean) Ilene (Kleinsorge) about going to graduate school. I think I got her office dirty. But she was so open to talking with me and supporting me, and Ilene wrote a recommendation letter that helped me get into Harvard.

“You’re always a little nervous with something like that, but Ilene said don’t worry, we prepared you, and she was absolutely right,” Willener said. “The top students at Oregon State can compete anywhere in the world against anyone.”

For Willener, now operations manager and Danaher Business System leader at Tektronix/Danaher, the route to OSU began on Sauvie Island, where from age 12 to 18 he worked at a local farm and kennel. After graduating from Scappoose High School, he followed in the footsteps of his OSU alum father, Henry, and headed to Corvallis.

Willener graduated in management and finance from OSU in 2004 and earned a place in a Weyerhaeuser program designed to develop new leaders. Within a few months he was the night-shift supervisor, winning over the older, more experienced workers by “treating them with respect and giving them a fair shake” and “approaching situations with humility and common sense.”

“Listening is a really big part of it,” he said. “People respect you for it.”

Willener will be honored May 11 in Portland at the college’s annual Celebration of Excellence, along with the rest of the 2015 award winners as well as the retiring Kleinsorge. For more on the event and the honorees, follow the College of Business blog as the countdown to the celebration continues over the next couple of weeks.

The evening begins with a reception at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner and the awards presentation. For more information or to register, contact Elsa Frey at elsa.frey@oregonstate.edu or call 541-737-6648, or register online at http://business.oregonstate.edu/awards.