A Holistic Approach to Industry Collaborations

How can business schools and businesses create more effective collaborations? Today's top business leaders discuss some successful ways to approach partnerships.


Joseph DiAngelo: [00:20] Business schools need to collaborate with their corporate partners, their non profit partners, and their government agencies because we have the danger of teaching the things we want to teach, as opposed to teaching the things that we need to teach.

Michael Arena: [00:38] I love the way business schools are doing more team teaching, more project oriented teaching, and working on a startup, building a product, or building a new operating system. By challenging students to work as teams is really critically. I would love to see the next level of that.

[00:56] How do you work beyond that team? How do you create the acceptance across, maybe, three or four other teams to buy into your idea? Both students and faculty members could do a lot more in trying to bridge those gaps today.

Shaun Budnik: [01:10] Having these students really work with businesses and solve their real problems is a great way in terms of successful collaboration. I also think that what we haven't done very well is maximize the relationship throughout an entire university.

[01:30] Many big companies go to schools and universities. They approach them piecemeal and don't have a big understanding of how many people are actually touching the university and impacting it.

[01:42] The same on the school side, I don't think the universities realize what a big fingerprint some of these companies have.

[01:49] Really trying to step back and harness—"What's the relationship really like? How do we leverage all the great people that are coming to the university from a company? How does the university understand the impact that these businesses are having?"—to take it to another level.

Tony Lee: [02:07] One of the great ways for business schools to reach out is to invite business leaders onto campus, not just as regular speakers but perhaps even adjunct faculty, folks who are there on a regular basis, that students feel like they can get to know and get a good sense of what the real challenges are.

Arena: [02:24] You need to bring more people than HR into the room from a corporate standpoint so that you've got some R&D folks. You've got some business strategists in the room. You're thinking much more holistically about what the possibilities could be as we partner and work together beyond, "I am a consumer of what you produce," which is talent.

[02:44] It's got to be much more holistic than that.

DiAngelo: [02:46] The reason to stay connected is so that you're aware of the issues that are impacting business so you can prepare academic programs to help the corporations meet their needs. Our job is to service them. Our job is to provide the support in terms of personnel to keep them successful.

[03:09] If you're not innovative, you're dead. The programs throughout the world have been successful in business schools. They're the ones that are staying on the cutting edge.

Budnik: [03:22] Universities can benefit from what businesses are going through in terms of innovation and disruption. We are learning a lot as well from universities, what to expect as they innovate, and how we can learn from that.

[03:36] Working together has been insightful. It's been very engaging and fulfilling.

Filmed February 2019 at AACSB's Deans Conference in Vancouver, Canada.