Family Business Intensive: Exchange for Kellogg Partner School from India

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August 2015
Kellogg's Center for Family Enterprises (CFE) hosted an intensive week of instruction on aspects of family enterprise for 50 MBA students on exchange from the Indian School of Business Master's in Family Business Program (ISBMFaB). This is a unique MBA program at Indian School of Business for students working in their family enterprises. They meet all together one week out of six on ISB's Hyderabad and Mohali campuses to learn MBA concepts. Then, for one week during their 16-month program, they take classes at Kellogg on Northwestern University's Evanston campus.

Co-Academic Directors of the jam-packed Kellogg Week 2015 were Professor John L. Ward, Professor Justin B. Craig and Visiting Professor Pramodita Sharma. Nine different Kellogg professors presented on topics of particular importance to next generation leaders in family business. Topics included:

  • Change
  • Crisis Management
  • Family Culture and Values
  • Governance
  • Innovation
  • Leadership
  • Networks
  • Managing Paradoxes
Co-Academic Director Sharma described, "Students were challenged and inspired by some of the best faculty members from Kellogg and beyond who shared insights based on leading edge knowledge in their respective areas of study."

On the topic of Innovation, one student reflected, "The question we need to answer here is what we can do to create value for our family, society and enterprise that also leads to personal innovation."

Another student shared about Crisis Management, "Most of my life "Crisis" as a situation has been misinterpreted. Based on today's lecture, I can now talk about a lot of the problems faced in our business very objectively. They are important, but they are not all to be labeled "Crisis".

About Networking, a third student commented, "The importance of networking is something everyone knows. But until this lecture, the how, where and with whom to network, and to stay connected for long term is something I personally didn't know very well."

Another student noted teamwork, biases, and perspective: "Thank you for giving us a wonderful opportunity to learn at Kellogg. The week was an impactful learning experience in an energetic environment. It gave me an opportunity to reflect on my leadership style. My biggest take away was the importance of core values and culture in an organization. One of the lecturers taught that our biases shape our perspectives. The discussions with my teammates that followed helped me shift my perspective and find better solutions."

According to Co-Academic Director Craig, "The classroom learning culture the students contributed to was stunning. A feature of the program was the peer consulting project which involves working in small groups to share and offer solutions to each other's real family and business issues. All agreed they left Kellogg better prepared for the challenges they will be facing as business, family and community leaders."

Co-Academic Director Ward concluded, "Kellogg is privileged to host this unique program and experience for ISBMFaB students each year. No cohort in the world is so invested in preparing for their future roles as family business leaders."