Think Different

[72 min 52 sec] – Featuring Sara Beckman, Faculty Director, Management of Technology Program

MBA students excel in solving problems. Over many years, they’ve been taught to perform well on standardized tests, zero in on solutions for bosses and clients, and exude confidence in having found THE solution. More and more though, the problems MBA graduates face today fall in the category of “wicked problems,” the kind with many stakeholders and no single solution. To confront “wicked problems,” MBAs need more skills in understanding and framing those problems at the outset. In this session, you will get a taste of what MBA students experience as they attack “wicked problems.” This session will highlight one of the main core courses as part of the Berkeley Innovative Leadership Development curriculum.
Sara Beckman’s work focuses on design and innovation, which has led to the recent development and offering of a new course to all MBA students at Haas that introduces them to the basic skills required to innovate. She brings to this class twenty-five plus years of teaching experience, and over 15 years of teaching topics related to design and new product development. During her tenure at Berkeley-Haas, Beckman has regularly introduced new courses in areas ranging from entrepreneurship in biotechnology to the strategic value of design and has won the excellence in teaching award from MBA students as well as the campus-wide distinguished teaching award. She has also taught for MIT and Stanford University, run the Change Management Team at Hewlett-Packard, and worked as a consultant in the operations management practice at Booz, Allen and Hamilton. Beckman has degrees in industrial engineering and statistics from Stanford University. She serves on the advisory boards of the Corporate Design Foundation and the Design MBA Program at the California College of the Arts.

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