Sometimes I think I am teaching in Latin and my students are listening for a modern language.
I shared with my students the other day a list of major corporations that I follow. That list includes all the major North American railways along with Caterpillar, Boeing, John Deere, Chevron, Wal-Mart and McDonald’s. When I asked them which companies they follow I hear, in order, Apple, Google, Facebook, Disney, Target and McDonald’s. Clearly we look at business through different lenses. I think heavy duty, long run, industrial leaders and my students see light, nimble, creative new firms.
Now there is nothing wrong with either of our frameworks. However, here is the subtle, and I believe, tremendous opportunity.
The processes of closing this gap involves movement on both sides, During this summer my colleague, Janet O’Tousa, and I took our accounting students and some fellow faculty to a tour of a national steel processing firm with its headquarters in South Bend. At Steel Warehouse we were surrounded by tons of steel formed to the highest tolerance by massive equipment. Students understand the prof a bit better.
By starting this little blog I am experiencing communication of information in a format that I am unfamiliar. Hey, it is not that bad. Prof understands his students a bit better.
The moving toward each other is a quiet and slow process. But, my friends, it is fun and I believe a worthwhile effort.
Let me know what you think.