Inside Business Buzz – March 2014
Message from the Dean
The College of Business has more than 150 faculty and staff and more than 20,000 alumni. That’s a big tent and reflects well on what’s been done to build this College. More importantly, though, this group is a network of professionals, a company of talented and future leaders, who share a love for Georgia Southern and for our College of Business.
Together, our faculty and alumni would nearly fill Paulson Stadium, and through our continuing hard work we are changing the face of business, in our region and beyond. But we are more than just a legacy of past success. The College of Business represents a resource for every graduate and an opportunity for each new student.
So, let’s engage this network. Let’s support and encourage each other. Let’s invest in one another and, together, let’s build the Georgia Southern brand!
“Go Local,” the 3DS team chosen to advance to the Savannah FastPitch competition won first place in the Student Entrepreneur category, the Grand Prize “Overall Winner” award in the Final Pitch category, and the Audience Choice Award. City Campus staff has also spoken to most of the other teams from 3DS who want to keep working on their ideas and to determine how to make them actual businesses.
City Campus News
City Campus accepted its first GENIE client from Jefferson County. He is starting a BBQ restaurant, and members of City Campus staff will help him try to secure some funding and equipment, but, most importantly, the staff is trying to help guide him so he has a successful business.
Faculty Members Host Parliament Members from Ghana
The College of Business hosted three honorary members of the Parliament of Ghana on campus the last week of February as part of an organized training tour studying democratic governance in the Georgia Assembly and other state institutions.
Coordinated by a committee led by College of Business faculty member Dr. William Amponsah and Russell Keen, vice president for Government Relations and Community Engagement, the Ghana delegation included the Honorable Emmanuel K. Bedzrah, chair of the Government Assurances Committee, the Honorable John O.K. Bless, and Dr. Emmanuel Akrofi-Tibo, assistant clerk to the committee.
The team traveled to the United States specifically to learn from Georgia institutions about oversight, ethics, and accountability in government operations. In addition to touring the Georgia Southern campus, the delegation also met with Provost Jean Bartels, representatives from the Office of International Programs, and Statesboro Mayor Jan Moore.
“The most interesting thing so far that we have seen is how this area is a University community. In Ghana, we don’t have such a thing. We are a new democracy,” said Akrofi-Tibo.
“We are here to learn about your institution and what makes your government and democracy work. Everyone is looking up to America, and we want to learn and also improve upon our working parliament,” said Bedzrah.
“I’m impressed by the number of programs offered and the volume of students at Georgia Southern University. International students, including African students, come here from all over the world. When I get back to Ghana, I will encourage more and more people to come and learn here,” said O.K. Bless.
The nation of Ghana has demonstrated keen interest in advancing democratic principles in its development strategies. It is often referred to as the torchbearer of African democracy. As a result, the nation was rewarded by President Obama in July 2009 with his first visit to a Sub-Saharan African nation as President.
Following the visit to Statesboro, the Ghanaian delegation will travel to The University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government for further training and then proceed to Atlanta to the Georgia Assembly and related institutions.
Three Things to Consider When Planning for Growth
Jason Anderson, director of the SBDC, had an article published in Business in Savannah titled, “Three Things to Consider When Planning for Growth.”
Three Things to Consider When Planning for Growth
By JASON ANDERSON
Experienced business owners know that growth is both something to get excited about and approached with caution. Poorly planned or unchecked growth can cause many problems for your business, including cash flow challenges, production issues, missed sales, customer dissatisfaction, and unnecessary stress for your team. Thus, it is important to plan for growth and take steps to prevent common mistakes that cause growth-related issues. Here are three things to consider that will help you prepare for future growth.
Preparation for growth starts from within. Prepare your people. This means both instilling in them the required mindset and developing the appropriate behaviors and skills that will position them for success in your future, expanded company. What message do you need to communicate, and have your team accept, to gain its full support and motivation? Which employees will need to be developed in what areas for your larger operation to be successful?
Will you need to create new positions and hire externally? Your human resource coordinator may need to become well-versed in certain employment laws or your production manager may need to learn a new quality-control technique.
Chances are at least one person in your business will have to undertake some professional growth. Take an inventory of all of your team’s capabilities and, then, make a list of what capabilities will be needed to operate on the envisioned larger scale. The gaps are where you need to focus your development efforts. Do not forget to look at yourself, too.
As a company expands, practices and traditions that were once helpful may lose their usefulness and need to be streamlined or eliminated. Evaluate your internal processes and procedures to
determine what modifications will need to be made. It is unlikely that a company generating $400,000 in annual sales will be able to grow to $4 million in annual sales by doing business as usual. What processes will need to be changed to ensure you can meet the increased demand?
How efficient are your processes currently, and how far will these efficiencies go in your expanded company? Growth inevitably will call for process adjustments, if not re-creation.
Flowcharting is a great way to help you perform this analysis. You can use software or just a pencil and paper to diagram the flow of all of the current processes and procedures in your business. After this is done, determine where you can create additional efficiencies. What can you add that will help? What can you remove that will help?
Change to your company will affect many different people, both internally and externally. Perform a stakeholder analysis to determine who will be affected by the changes. Which employees will be affected directly through new responsibilities or organizational restructuring? Which vendors will be affected by a change in purchasing procedures or inventory? Will there be delays or interruptions to existing orders for your customers? How will your competitors be affected, and how are they likely to respond? Will your company’s growth affect the community and how?
While flowcharting your processes and procedures will help you see the details, stakeholder analysis helps you take a step back and look at the big picture. Understanding who all of your company’s different stakeholders are and what their interests are will enable you to form strategies for proactively managing any issues.
Growth can cause a lot of unexpected issues for a business, but, with the proper thought and planning performed well in advance of implementation, the number of issues can be minimized.
Faculty News & Publications
In November 2013, Dr. Greg Brock was awarded a $3,000 travel grant from Southern Federal University allowing him to spend a week in Feb. 2014 sharing his College of Business-sponsored research on Mexico and discussing teaching there in the future. SFU is also interested in improving its administration. During the week, Dr. Brock met with the University’s vice-president and a director of an institute. He also helped create and lead a 6-person economics research group.
Bock, Dora E., Jacqueline K. Eastman, and Benjamin P. McKay (2013), “Exploring the Relationship Between Gratitude and Economic Perceptions,” the Journal of Business & Economics Research 11 (11), 445-454.
Eastman, Jacqueline K., Rajesh Iyer, and Stephanie Thomas (2013), “The Impact of Status Consumption on Shopping Styles: An Exploratory Look at the Millennial Generation,” Marketing Management Journal 23 (1), 57-73.
Eastman, Jacqueline K., Joseph Bocchi, and Danielle N. Rydzewski (2013),” Determinants in Online MBA Program Selection: An Exploratory Study,” International Journal of Management in Education 7 (1&2), 44-60.
Don Berecz and Robert Marley, both faculty members in the School of Accountancy, have been invited to serve as panelists on a discussion of the topic “Teaching Beyond the Textbook” at the 2014 Southeast regional American Accounting Association convention. Berecz and Marley join panel members Kathleen Sobieralski, the assistant academic director of the University of Maryland and Urton Anderson, Ernst & Young Professor of Accountancy at the University of Kentucky’s Gatton School of Business and Economics. Both Berecz and Marley are honored to be selected as panel members and look forward to sharing some of the strategies they employ in the classroom that take student learning beyond traditional textbook material.
The MBA Association (MBAA) hosted Professionally Captured at the February 26 Eagle Expo career fair. Professionally Captured allowed students, faculty, staff, and recruiters the opportunity to have a professional head shot taken for $25, a $100 value. Frank Fortune of Frank Fortune Photography took the pictures. This was a fundraising opportunity for the newly revitalized MBAA.
On March 5, Ms. Allison Gorman, assistant director of Career Services, presented on Emotional Intelligence; and on March 12, the MBAA hosted Ms. Drew Hunt with the Savannah Chamber. Ms. Hunt spoke on the importance of networking.
The executive board of Sigma Alpha Pi, the National Society of Leadership and Success—a collegiate organization focused on goal fulfillment, community involvement, and leadership has asked Dr. Robert Marley to serve as its faculty advisor. Dr. Marley, a faculty member in the School of Accountancy, has accepted the advisor role and will transition into the position during the current semester, with guidance from the current faculty advisor, Dr. Nadia Flanigan. Dr. Marley was nominated for the role of Sigma Alpha Pi faculty advisor by Executive Board Member Ryan Friedline, who was a student in Dr. Marley’s “Survey of Accounting Course” during the Fall of 2013.
Last updated: 3/25/2014