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MLK quote – ” He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it.”

In our Business Ethics classes,  we have students from many coutries,  and they talk about the unethical business practices ,  and the cooruption in governement.   The students in the MBA Ethics course are reading “Giving Voice to Values”, where they learn to solidify their values,  and then to voice those values in a way that positively influences the decisions of a company.  It takes moral courage to voice your  values in a situation where unethical behavior is part of the norm.  We must voice our values, which is protesting against evil, so that we are not viewed as cooperating with evil/ corruption and unethical business practices.

I find it very interesting that some of the oldest societies in the world, do not have business ethics and corruption under control.  In the USA we have ethics problems, and government corruption, just that we have in relatively under control, with our checks and balances, and people willing to step forward to control or even elimanate unethical practices.

One of MLK’s most famous quotes,  has a great significance to the study of ethics.  When we learn about ethics, the discussion in a business school,  comes to the issue of brand management of a company.  Companies do something unethical today,  and that will be in the media for all to see and judge a company!

What about the students own brand management ?  We do not have control over our heritage, our height, and many other factors.  What we  do have control over is our attitudes, behaviors,  and the content of our character.  When a student sends their resume to a company, the companay looks at the “student’s brand management” ie the college they are going to, the degree, concentrate,  and the GPA.  If you get the interview, then the company will have questions to understand “the content of your character”;  your attitudes, behaviors and where you are going !   Your resume tells where you have been, and now the company wants to understand,  do you have the content in your character to be a significant contributor to the organization, or will you be unethical and hurt the organization’s brand image.

In an earlier post I suggested to students, to not pay attention to the professor. Some students will work very hard on having the professor like them. What you will obtain, by concentrating on the material, is the professor will have high regard and then respect you. Isn’t respect the first thing in a relationship ?

Your in a new class, maybe a new university, maybe a new country, and you wonder how to get the best grade. Simple, do not pay attention to the professor ! Too many students make the mistake of paying attention to the professor and not the material ! These students see all the little idiosyncrasies of the professor and miss the knowledge being discussed. Some students spend time on figuring out how to have the professor “like” them. Don’t do that ! Get top grades in the course and the professor will have respect for you.

Education is 1 part knowledge and 99 parts inspiration = 100%

Dr. Butler teaches one of the more successful processes of Innovation & Technology Commericialization.  I am learning processes.  I was taught a process at Kodak in the early 1990′s,  when I was in a “Skunk Works” launching a new product.  Yet I find Dr. Butler’s so much more advanced than what I learned many years ago.  We never stop learning.  The more I learn, the more I understand what I do not know?   Do you know what you do not know ?

Student Question: Is this course about the Theories of Commericialization ?   No Dr. Butler is teaching the knowledge and a specific process of Technology Commericialization.  Some courses like my “Managing Technology” course is about knowledge. This course is not only about the knowledge, it is also about the process of commericialization.

Dr. John Bultler, Director of the highly successful IC2 at University of Austin, is teaching his outstanding Technology Commericalization course here at RIT the week of July 20th. Recognize these opportuniites, prioritize, and don’t miss them. They are rare.
This reminds me of the trip to Dubai where the honor students were exposed to top executives, professors, and presentations on business in the Middle East. Everyone watch for these opportunities ! Students will exclaim, I wished I had gone to that concert of  group   XYZ… and that is important in life.  Students should also exclaim, I wished I had gone to hear that Proffesor or presentation !   Also the networking opportunities at the right presentations,  are part of a students “Brand Management”.

You are going to experience a shock, much like  when you  moved from high school to undergrad, and now to grad school. That shock hits each person at a different time in college. The level of support, level of expectations are different at each level, and this is not so easily observed. Why is it designed this way you may ask ? There is less direct outline of what is expected ( ambiguity is built in ), professors will be a little less patient / forgiving with assignments as you progress, and several other things. Faculty are preparing the students to solve the problems they will face in their careers. This is a level of “rigor” built into top programs. I have heard many times over the 30 years, I got an “A’ in your undergrad class, why did I get a “B” or less, when I put the same hard work in. One interesting comment is ” I worked harder than I did before and my grade was the same or less”. Even more so in graduate programs, it is important to remember, it is not how hard you worked, but how smart you are, you demonstrated the understanding, and thesis of material in all of your class work,  showing your creative critical thinking on the subject you are studying.   Good Luck !  Stay focused. Be disciplined !  Do not get distracted from managing your brand !

In a recent problem, I noticed a communication problem between a deaf student and the cashier at one of the food service facilities. What would have helped is the ability of the cashier to talk into a mic and the words displayed on the same screen as the cost of the items that the customer could see. With the voice recognition software and the display units used in many cashier positions in stores this seems like a solution that would serve both the deaf community and the senior citizens that are hard of hearing.

Intellectual Property, the most saught after commodity on the planet, since it is worth more than gold!  David Hou, Esq, & Karla Wilsey, Esq. presented at RIT’s Saunders College of Business, Managing Technology and Innovation Graduate class, strategies employed to protect your IP.  Which strategy Trade Secret, Copyright, Trademark, and/or patents will protect your IP best.  This discussion explores the value of each of the ways to protect your IP.  David and Karla discussed recent court cases and examples of each the strategies the most notable companies have used.  Students heard the facts from people that deal with these issues in and out of the courtroom.  This is a very important issue prior to announcing to the world your idea, your processes, your product,  and starting to commericialize what you want to sell on the market !

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