Australia's Top Business School Welcomes Execs From Boeing and Carlyle Group
AGSM's Masters of Business speaker series gives studnets an insight into how people think at the top of the businesses they hope to join
AGSM MBA 2012 candidates Jason Mihelic and George Crones talk about the star business leaders the school has hosted so far as part of its Masters of Business lecture series.
An exciting new speaking series, the Masters of Business (MOB), is taking root at the AGSM. Several months ago members of the class of 2012 discussed the possibility of having people from the business world come to campus to speak to current students. From those conversations, an idea took shape about what MOB’s primary mission would be: to have top-level professionals share their experience, insight, and knowledge on how they achieved success.
The manner of this exchange was designed to allow for a free flowing and forthright discussion between the speakers and students. The emphasis is less on outward publicity for the school and more on the dissemination of relevant information that current MBAs can use when making the transition back to the working world. With these goals in mind, the 2012 students set about crafting a list of individuals with a unique combination of both personal and professional experience.
The first such person was Ian Thomas, President of Boeing Australia. Ian was the inaugural speaker at the series’ kick off on March 31st. His graciousness in accepting the invitation was only outmatched by his wit, wisdom, and the wealth of knowledge with which he at once entertained and informed the audience.
Ian’s unusual climb up the corporate ladder did not even actually begin in a corporation at all. He started his career as an academic, eventually reaching the apex of achievement in that field with a PhD in History from Cambridge University. Not feeling entirely satisfied with life in academia, he left it to take a job working as a presidential appointee in the Pentagon.
Four years of policy research and a change of presidents later, he then went to work for Boeing, the world’s largest aerospace firm. In his time at Boeing thus far, he has worked as the country head in the UK, India, and now Australia. The latter has the company’s largest base of operations outside of America.
Ian discussed a range of topics about the industry, his career, management, and general observations made from the different roles he has had. The night was a great success and ended with drinks and lively conversation in the courtyard.
The next Masters of Business speaker to come to campus was Simon Moore, head of country operations for the Carlyle Group, one of the largest private equity firms in the world. Simon similarly has a diverse background that includes ten years spent working in the investment banking sweatshops of New York. It was there that Simon became acculturated into the industry while working at JP Morgan, among other financial institutions.
As many good Aussies do, Simon eventually returned home from his long sojourn abroad to lead Carlyle’s operations in Australia. He shared these experiences and discussed many of the differences between working in the two countries. He also expounded at great length about the specifics of his industry and how it ties into the overall financial services landscape.
Though the audience was mainly comprised of people with an interest in finance, the scope of the conversation went well beyond the confines of that particular field and included general ruminations about the economy and careers. Simon dusted off his long dormant skills as a university lecturer to deliver a discussion that was every bit a lecture full of interesting, relevant tidbits for those in attendance. Again, the night ended with drinks and good conversation.
Going forward, the Masters of Business Series will continue to host top-level business professionals from Australia and indeed around the world. The goal is to have two to three speakers per session come to the AGSM. Though it began as an initiative by the full-time class of 2012 students, the series is open to people in the executive program as well. Notice of future MOB events will be posted via email and the AGSM website. More information and updates will also be provided in these columns in the coming months.
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