The Goizueta Business School’s undergraduate team of Matthew Bodien, Daniel Chapman, Rishav Kohli, and Kaitlin Weaver finished in 2nd place out of 26 teams in Wake Forest’s annual Marketing Summit. The ultimate goal of the international competition was to develop a program to promote IBM's "Smarter Planet" initiative. University of Pennsylvania's undergraduate team took the top prize, while the University of Maryland placed third.
"We were really pleased with our performance," noted team captain Chapman. “Our group had a lot of fun and learned a lot in the process. Emory will definitely be back next year and we will be going for first place." The students noted their business school classes for helping them to prepare adequately for the competition. In particular, they cited the usefulness of the Applied Integrated Marketing Communications course and described its similarities. "It was comparable to the consulting project we completed for Coca-Cola at Emory… only we had 36 hours to work instead of an entire semester, which made it an exciting challenge," stated Kohli. The students also found their experiences in Business Communications to be an asset during the competition. After the presentation, executives from companies such as IBM, Bank of America, and Lowe's approached the students to commend them on their presentation skills. "We felt comfortable in front of the 11 judges, not only because we strongly believed in our recommendations, but because we've all had experiences of presenting in front of many classes and groups," noted Weaver.
In addition to the rigors of the problem at hand, the students had to battle inclement weather with a severe snowstorm and a lack of sleep throughout the weekend. "We were given just 36 hours to solve the problem, and only slept about four hours over the two-day span before presenting to executives at IBM and other companies – we really tried to channel all our effort into coming up with the winning solution," stated Bodien. Chapman recalls that it was "Starbucks" and "humor" that got them through the bulk of the 36 hours.
"I felt the key to our success was our team chemistry," said Weaver. "We are all very good friends and that definitely helped to keep us motivated. It was important that we could all work well together in a high-stress environment. We were also thrilled with the professionalism of Wake Forest and the way we were treated. It was truly a first-class event." For more information about the summit, check out www.marketingsummitlive.com to see pictures, videos, and more from the event.
Daniel Chapman, BBA11