Change Is Eminent—Innovation Must Follow

Leading business educators and professionals share their thoughts on change in the world and how business and business schools must develop to keep up.


Mike McCracken: [00:00] Change is eminent, in business everywhere and in every industry. Now some change faster than others, but when change is happening you need talent that can adapt to that change. A key component of the knowledge base and really the acumen of individuals is to embrace the idea of, change requires and should include innovation and innovative thinking.

Anil Makhija: [00:46] I think we are challenged in terms of providing an environment where lifelong learning will take place. I think we recognize the problem. We see the unprecedented disruption and change around us, but we are coming from a model where the primary task of a business school, or in fact any college in the university, was to provide that functional knowledge.

Kenneth Freeman: [01:15] In my mind, as we look at the skills gaps that are appearing and the digital revolution that's underway, it's imperative that communication with business leaders and business school leaders, together, to identify a preferred future, is really important for our survival as business schools around the world.

Boris Shcherbakov: [01:32] We should care about the future. We should care about posterity and what comes after. It's not that we care about what happens in a thousand years from now. The future starts today. We are creating it, and our kids, and our children, will be managing this future that we are going to live in. We want to create the future that we will be comfortable living in.

David Payne: [01:58] Innovation just isn't about doing new things; it's about doing new things that have value. The business schools can bring the techniques, the Business Practices Council can identify, where will there be value delivered? When you put those two together, I think you've got the perfect recipe for success.

McCracken: [02:14] You have to prepare individuals, the best you can, to understand and prepare themselves for change. Encourage them to be innovative in their thinking and progressive in their thinking, because that's how solutions come about.

Neil Braun: [02:29] I think of the Kodak example a lot. Kodak made the mistake of thinking they were in the film manufacturing business, when in reality they were empowering people to take the pictures of their lives. If they had understood the business they were in, they probably wouldn't have gone bankrupt.

[02:46] I'm very concerned for business schools, actually for higher education, that the legacy of hundreds of years of doing it one way has so constrained the thought about the question, "What business are we in? What are the goals that we have?" that it constrains us from really making the changes that are necessary to be relevant in a world that's being incredibly disrupted by technology.

Freeman: [03:15] In an industry like ours, we're very focused on exploiting our traditional models. What we really need to do is explore new ideas and new opportunities at the same time we're exploiting our traditional capabilities.

Makhija: [03:26] There is a certain degree of revamping that needs to take place. This is also an element where collaboration between industry and academia is necessary. So, I would say that we have only started on that journey.

Filmed February 2018 on site at AACSB's annual Deans Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA.