The EMBA presented an Executive Leadership presentation (Idea to Enterprise) on February 17, 2012. If you were there, you gained some valued information and had a great opportunity to build your business network. If you missed the event, by all means make sure you attend a future event. The presentation was held at the Illini Center in Chicago with a full house of graduating class(s) 2012 and 2013, Alumni, many Special Guests and Potential Students for class of 2014! It was a night to remember.
The key note was delivered by Sean Chou Chief Technology Officer from Fieldglass, Inc. and Steve Vivian Partner from Prism Capital. Chou has helped to propel Fieldglass into a highly profitable company in the software technology industry. Vivian is partner in a venture capital firm who was very instrumental in funding Fieldglass and facilitating a strategic business framework in which fieldglass could adopt and build upon. The dynamic partnership has contributed to the multi-million dollar success of Fieldglass, Inc.
Chou believes in building relationships that are both meaningful and full of purpose. Thus, relationships must be grounded in trust and passion. He further esteems that if you are an entrepreneur, innovation should be at the core of that spirit and, “innovation is not what you think.”
He goes on to explain that innovation:
Must be focused on solving a problem
Must entail proper business planning
Must have proper funding/ capital backing
Vivian believes in investing and growing exceptional businesses. As a venture capitalist he looks at business operations with laser focus and the business executives had better be prepared to “bring it” if they want him on their team. Vision, Spirit and Innovation are not enough to build a winning company. A business executive has to have real operational know how in their repertoire. Success is a highly specialized formula bonded by relationships and diverse know how. If one relational link is broken the business will not be successful or profitable.
And so… the night of networking began. Dinner was great and the numerous net adds to the rolodex was worth more than gold. Where else could one find themselves in a room of potential CEO’s, Executive level V.P’s and President’s of Multi-National Corporations? And let’s not forget, start up millionaires. What a night of networking and elation. The high point for me was knowing that The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign EMBA program fosters an environment of highly motivated people who are destined to change the world. I have no doubt that current and future classes will turn out some very important leaders in the business world. I am certainly inspired to be one of those leaders. I have to be, it’s in my core and I am being given the opportunity and networking platform to fine tune a business craft that will change the world.
Note: Sean Chou and Steve Vivian are graduates of The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.