I asked a mentor what to do with regret and this is what she told me, "what can you do? Move on; face the consequences". She had explained to me prior that the better decisions made in my life are well-informed and not hurried, so that's why the bad decisions happen.
They are made with insufficient information and little or no time to properly think through. Its freeing to reckon with your experiences and be able to make this mental separation, it brings indescribable peace and invaluable power. There is nothing better than knowledge to extinguish ignorance
On a faithful afternoon, I got a notification that my Analysis of Business Problems exam will be a "take-home" exam. As a Software Engineer, I love take-home tests, because you will have the time to think without any anxiety. However, having ABP as a "take-home" exam, I was a bit frightened because of my deficiencies in Cost Management, which could be a lead into solving a business case. In most cases, you must be up and running in a particular discipline before you can feel very safe with take-home exams.
Some years back, while studying Pure & Applied Mathematics at the university, I had a course in my second year called Real Analysis (MTH 207). From the title of that course, you will understand it is more of mathematical terrorism. The exam was an "open-book" exam. You are allowed to bring in textbooks, lecture notes, and all kinds of materials you may need to solve the questions into the exam hall. Unfortunately, people cried in the exam hall. I was panting like I have 5 seconds left on earth. The thing with such exams is that they test your low-order and high-order thinking skills. So you necessarily will not find answers anywhere in the materials you brought in for the open-exam. You must know the course as you know your name before you can come up with anything worthy of marks.
ABP exam came, and it took me like 18 hours to get the trail of my solution. I supposed I would have answers under an hour and develop the case. But it didn't play out that way. My duty in the exam was to help the CEO take a $1.6 billion decision. If there was anything I have learned in the Analysis of Business Problems, I think I will give it to the Criteria used in analysing the Alternatives/Options you have. Profitability was a criterion for me; and Capacity Utilisation. Inside "Profitability" is embedded criterions such as Power Sufficiency, Social Factors such as Unrest, and so on. So I used Cost Structure provided in the case exhibits to determine the profitability if I ask the CEO to take the step of building a new facility, and also analysed what happens if CEO maintains status quo, Then I profer a decision. If my calculations are correct or wrong, that stays under the exam anxiety. One thing I am sure of is that you doubtless will look into ROI in investing $1.6 billion.
Do have a nice day.
Analysis of Business Problems is one course that I usually have to read severally to understand the direction to go in solving the case. Most times, I read the case once or twice. Then, do something else and come back with a fresh eye to look at the case. Due to this, I wondered if I will be able to figure out how to analyze the case if given a 3-hour sit-in exam. I was afraid of probably spending 2 out of the 3 hours and not figuring out where to go with the analysis of the case. So, I wished for a take-home exam. I did not even mind if the take-home exam would be for just 12 hours.
I got what I wished for – a take-home exam. The moment this was confirmed, I became very relaxed and no longer bothered about the ABP exam. I had the confidence that no matter how difficult the case is, I would figure it out within 12 hours at the maximum.
The take-home exam was scheduled to take place on the 12th of September 2020. The night before the exam day, the faculty sent an email to the class wishing us the best. In the mail, she also asked us to calm down, think straight, put ourselves in the shoes of the protagonist and use all the relevant data available. The “calming down” aspect got some people more agitated. I just read the email as if I was hearing her voice and I smiled.
On the exam day, the exam case was made available at 9 am with the submission deadline being 24 hours after. Shortly before 9 am, I was seated at my desk patiently waiting for the exam to start. The moment the case became available, I started my exam. I read the case a couple of times. As I expected, it took me a while to fully understand it. I planned to have the first draft of my solution at about 4 pm at the latest. Leave the exam and probably sleep. Then, when I wake, look at my solution with a fresh eye. I hoped to submit the case at about 9 pm.
The ABP case was about helping the managing director of a company decide whether to embark on a 1.6 billion USD investment in the face of uncertainties. My exam did not go the way I planned it. I only had the first draft of my solution to the case by 3 am the following day after working on the case from 9 am with no break. I slept the moment I completed the first draft with my alarm set to wake up at 6:30 am to review my solution with a fresh eye. At the end of the day, I submitted my paper just 22minutes to the deadline.
I did not imagine that I will spend almost 24 hours to complete a 24 hours exam. It was not an easy task but I’m happy because I gave it my best and I hope that my best will be good enough.
ABP is finally over!!!
Market planning is the process of coordinating and specifying the marketing objectives of a company and gathering strategies and tactics to achieve them over a period of time. The goal – which is what the plan is meant to achieve must be clear and definite; the objective – which is the specific metric of measurement must also be defined; and the strategy – which is how this will be achieved must also be made clear.
Though the Marketing Team/Department takes the lead in preparing the marketing plan, every other department should be involved. Once the plan has been documented and approved, all related teams in the company should refer to the marketing plan and align their activities with it.
A marketing plan will help an organization to understand deeper the business they are into and the value to provide to enable them to sell such value. It will also help them to know their competitors and they should be the preferred. This knowledge should then be used in formulating the tactics and set measurable and realistic KPIs (Key Performance Indicators).
Some of the benefits of a good marketing plan as we learnt during the session with Dr Venessa include:
- It helps to identify a company SWOT
- Know where you are going and how to get there: goal, objectives and strategy
- It helps to stay focus: to control we also have to track
- To have a specific time frame
- To understand the market, internal and external environment, key competitors, products and brands
- Analyse the marketing mix proper to the need of the company
- Afford the company a working document that will serve as a guideline for implementation, defining the scope of the marketing project
The D day had arrived. 12th September 9am, ABP exam, the moment the MMBA1 students had all been waiting for.
I quickly logged into e-learn to check the case topic. "ALUSAF HILLSIDE PROJECT", i don't think i would be forgetting that case name in a long while. We had all been informed earlier that it would be a take home exam, 24 hr duration.
The case wasn't bulky compared to some others, this was about 11 pages in total. I scanned through it the first time and it felt like i was reading Greek. Couldn't get any understanding of it, so i carefully read it 2 more times before i was able to make out some meaningful jottings.
So there i was, locked up in my room, analyzing, analyzing and analyzing till i got stock. I took a 1 hr brake at about 2pm, came back around 3pm and then took 30 min brake after every 3 hrs. At some point in time i was just gazing at the system, blank, nothing to write, like i was in a stand still traffic. This was around 1am, i decided to buzz my colleagues on the group to check if i was the only one undergoing this immense tension. Before i typed the second sentence on chat i started seeing response, this gave me a bit of comfort. At least i wasn't the only one undergoing this torment.
Before i knew it i heard a cock crow, hmmm, 6am my time, still battling with ABP. I could picture Dr. Yetunde Anibaba laughing at me , then i asked my self, did i really pay money to undergo this torture, who sent me!
By 8:15 am i was totally exhausted, wrapped up the case and submitted on e-learn. I had just stayed up 23hrs trying to solve the ALUSAF HILLSIDE PROJECT case, with several mugs of coffee.
I never imagined it would take this turn and i pray never to write such an exam again for that long. Well, lets hope it turns out well, i'd simply take it as part of my LBS training and life experience.
Capacity Requirement Planning (CRP): Looks at the human and machine aspect. CRP is a feasibility check on labour and machine utilization.
Advance Planning Systems
Manufacturing Resource Planning (MRPII) is the second generation MRP systems that connect to financial systems and help synchronize internal operations.
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) an information system designed to integrate the internal and external processes of a supply chain via a centralized database.
Distribution requirement planning (DRP): Ideal for the complex distribution network, from push to pull production/service offering and waste reduction.
Growing up, I got acquainted and heard over and over again the cliche 'Your life is a product of the books you read and the people you associate with'. How true the above statement is. Ignorance has been one of the pronounced banes of success in the world today. You cannot go beyond your knowledge. The good book says 'My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge'. In this age, wherein knowledge is being increased; men are still unwilling to learn and know past their comfort zone. To move ahead and remain relevant in this generation, you must be knowledgeable. Know as much as you can. Be open to knowledge outside of what you are accustomed to.
As I packed my belongings to my husband's place, I realized that I have books that I am yet to know what the contents are. Who knows the impact being aware of the truth and experience shared in those books would have in my life. I am denying myself a lot, to not have created time to read. Can I commit to reading one of those every week? What level of advantage will that give me? Achieving this will mean adding new knowledge from 15 books into my life from now till the year ends. It will surely empower me and take me a step further towards making an impact in my world.
I invite you to join me in this 'One book a week challenge'. Our lives will be empowered when we engage in this challenge until the end.
"Help me to strengthen my weaknesses and perfect my strengths"
My prayer for most of the last decade.
We have new groups for Marketing! I am really excited about this. I always share with as many of us as possible that it's always great to work with others outside of my own group. Marketing always gives us this opportunity. (Thanks Vanessa!) I sincerely appreciate the chance to get to know everyone else and learn from them as well.
This group for our project is an interesting experience because unlike our group for the entirety of the period, we initially came in tentative and uncertain. Everyone tried to be open and was still cautious of who these people were. We did not know what to expect and sincerely just hoped for the best.
This time the marketing group is a short and sweet arrangement. The goal is focused and it is for a purpose - create and bring together your capacity to make your capstone project happen successfully.
When a group is created for a specific purpose as such unlike an all-purpose space like the former, it tends to be formal and not as casual. Especially when you don't usually interact and you want to bring in your A-game. Its not that serious.
The MMBA 1 classes 1st-semester examinations on Analysis of Business Problems(ABP) are scheduled to hold on Saturday, September 12th, 2020.
This will be the end of what has been an undulating, unwinding road of uncertainties.
When Mrs. Yetunde Anibaba, the facilitator for the course, first introduced it to us, it seemed like it would be a straight forward walk in the park and a guaranteed A grade at the semester's end.
A few months later and barely 18 hours to these exams that assumption now seems like a distant dream.
The first few cases were straight forward, but after the BioPasteur case and assignment, I started to have 2nd thoughts about the simplicity of this case.
The next case to throw one off balance was the Ace Automotive case and after that, every course since then has required a different approach to resolution.
A review of my assessment scores on the Biopasteur case and a second assignment confirmed my earlier fears-This course is no walk in the park and must be given the attention it deserves.
In light of this new knowledge, like David in the bible(my name is David), I am ready to face this 'Goliath' in the faith that my preparation will give me victory in tomorrow's exams!
At 60 , most people are already feeling ancient, wouldn't want to do anything in their lives, except to laze around and patiently wait for death. Not so for Dayo Adebanyo who is adamantly bent on resuscitating her formal business and passing it on to her children , even at the corridor of 60. I wish this could send a signal to those who believe, out there , that life stops at 60; that once you attain it, it's a signal for you to start waiting for death. Life starts when you are born and ends when you die , not at a particular age, even when you are still feeling agile.
Slamdex, which was begun in FESTAC town and with loans by Dayo and her husband, Samson, climbed to a record success in next to no time. Slamdex had become the talk of the town , due to its spectacular success, in its hey days; thereafter, gradually declined due to frequent policy changes by government, unstable political and economic terrain, and fierce competitions from other similar businesses. These were the factors which Slamdex could not surmount, until its eventual death , 13years ago. Now , in spite of the herculean task of business rebirth, Dayo is adamantly bent on, at her age, resuscitating Slamdex that would outlive her.