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Leavey School of Business News Blog


Business Today

  •  Mission Sustainable Challenge

    Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013 11:09 AM

    Engage in the spirituality of sustainability. Participate in a daily action and reflection challenge throughout the month of October. Read, act, and contemplate on your own, or attend events and reflect with friends and other campus community members.

    The new Mission Sustainable Challenge is a great opportunity for SCU's students, faculty and staff to practice behavior change around issues related to sustainability.  The Challenge was developed through the leadership of Julia Claire Landry in SCU's Campus Ministry along with the Center for Sustainability and a cadre of committed faculty and staff who recognize that the way forward to a more wholesome, more sustainable future is based upon collective behavior change.  Extending the type of collective action called for in the Challenge beyond SCU's immediate community would require additional support.  A recent research study facilitated by Guardian Sustainable Business, Business in the Community, and ComRes provides quantitative evidence for the commonly held insight that individuals need business, and government, to inspire and ease this shift into sustainable behavior.  The 2013 Sustainable Behavior Change Marketplace Survey Report represents the responses from 328 organizations, two-thirds of which were private companies, from a wide range of industries.  (It's also noteworthy that over half of the individuals serving as their organization's respondent were at Director level or above.)  Ninety-seven percent of the respondents indicated that they believe organizations should try to influence the behaviors of their employees, customers, and suppliers, and 94% of those surveyed believe sustainable behavior change is important to help their organization improve its impact on society and achieve long-term success.  The private sector is seen (55%) as the most responsible for making it easier for people to act and change their behavior and, in fact, 75% of the organizations surveyed have developed or currently are developing a program to enact behavior change in their employees and other stakeholders.

    So, why is the private sector interested in sustainable behavior change?  Well, private industry reports being concerned about economic uncertainty (91%), attracting and retaining a skilled workforce (90%), energy security (88%), and the speed of technological change (88%).  The top five factors driving the private sector to actively influence behavior changes are: 1. building stronger relationships with customers and other stakeholders (44%); 2. gaining a competitive advantage over their competitors (38%); 3. creating sustainable local communities and markets (38%); 4. showing leadership (29%); and 5. cutting resource costs (26%).  Communication was overwhelmingly identified (77%) as the most employed strategy for enacting behavior change and there was a dearth of creative approaches when other strategies were requested.  This indicates that this is an area ripe for innovation.  Serving as barriers to organizations for pursuing sustainable behavioral change strategies is a lack of senior staff buy-in (42%), a lack of funding (35%), and a lack of skills or knowledge in their employees (34%).  Only 26% cited that a lack of a business case for action was an actual barrier.  Again, this indicates an opportunity for young professionals to immediately add value to their organizations by offering the missing skills and knowledge and communicating an influential message to the senior staff who need convincing.
    If you would like to participate, click here to get started, or visit the Mission Sustainable homepage for more information.  
  •  Jaclyn Bacci - Advisory Board Merit Scholar Recipient

    Friday, Oct. 4, 2013 8:45 AM

    Jaclyn Bacci, recipient of the Tom & Teri Furey Advisory Board Merit Scholarship, began at the Leavey School of Business last spring. She is currently working full-time while earning her MBA as part of the Finance organization at Symantec. 

    We talked to her about her experiences so far with the Leavey School of Business:
    Why did you decide to go back to school?
    I decided to go back to school for a few reasons. As an undergraduate, I declared a major based on what I thought would be the most applicable to my everyday life should I not end up staying in that field in my career. I majored in Finance, and am still in the field to this day and thoroughly enjoy what I'm doing. However, as I work with my business partners, I realize there is so much more to a business that I do not have a firm understanding of. I decided to go back to school to broaden my knowledge base and potentially explore other fields within business. Another reason was to be surrounded by like-minded, driven individuals who introduce new perspectives and also challenge my own perspective. The last reason was to stay competitive in our ever-changing work environment. I am finding that more and more of my peers and managers have their MBAs and find them to be very useful. 
    Why did you choose SCU?
    I received my bachelor's degree from SCU and could not have asked for a better experience. I came to Santa Clara knowing the values driving the program are ones with which I am on board. SCU also offered the most flexible program in the Bay Area and was my most convenient option for working full-time and going to school part-time. I was deciding between accepting my offer to SCU or Haas, and realized that throughout the application process, Santa Clara made me feel more valued as a member of their business school than Haas did. I was personally reached out to on several occasions by staff members of the business school, one being Dean Starbird himself once I found out about my scholarship. Between the amazing reputation of the program, the sense of value I felt, and the rare opportunity to be granted a scholarship to help me fund my schooling, Santa Clara was absolutely the best option for me. 
    What do you hope the Leavey School of Business will do for you?
    I hope that the Leavey Business School will broaden my knowledge base and open my mind to new perspectives. I want to be challenged, I want my thinking to be challenged, and I want to look at ideas in ways I have not been able to in the past. I also hope to build strong relationships with other Silicon Valley professionals during my time at Santa Clara. 
    What do you think of your experiences here so far?
    I have completed three courses over two quarters and have already been so impressed by the courses, the material, and the professors. I have already started to feel challenged and I see myself thinking differently, both in the classroom and in the workplace. I ask more questions and have found myself to be more proactive and comfortable asking those questions. I am also so impressed by the caliber of students I am surrounded with. The diversity within the program is extensive and really brings together a group of people with very different experiences and perspectives. I find that I am learning just as much from my peers as I am from my professors, and I think that is more than I could have asked for.
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