While an Ivey HBA team captured two case wins at the RSM Star Case Competition hosted by the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM), the lessons learned at the international competition were just as significant.
The all-women’s team of Katie Chen, Rachna Jog, Natalie Ngo, and Katherine Tang won the six-hour and 24-hour cases in the international 12-team competition for undergrads. And in a surprise twist in the competition, the team was also invited to present their insights to the boards of two organizations that took part in the event.
The team was selected in early January from the Ivey Case Competition Club, and coached by Associate Professor Ann Frost on strategy, and Jana Seijts, Lecturer in Management Communications, on presentation and client engagement.
“It was fascinating to interact with business school students from across the world,” said Chen. “The theme of the competition was sustainability, and so the cases related to companies that are working to incorporate sustainability into their core business models.”
The competition gave the team an understanding of how organizations like Lyreco, a worldwide distributor of office supplies and workplace products, and Boskalis, a leading global dredging company, can mix sustainability and profitability.
“We have a common misconception that sustainability comes at the cost of profitability, but that doesn't need to be the case. We learned that we can do this in a way that makes financial sense for both. If we learn to take care of the people and the planet, the profit will take care of itself.”