Andrew Dalik, an MBA student at Copenhagen Business School, had a great experience in the Sustainability Challenge 2013 held at HEC Montreal in March, although it was a high-pressure competiton.
“This kind of experience isn’t something you can acquire from a book or a hypothetical simulation,” Dalik said. “It was the real pressures of time and place that made it a valuable experience.”
This opportunity was a unique one for Dalik, who is a Canadian national, to compete in his home country, yet represent Copenhagen Business School.
Participating in a case competition was a goal he set for himself during his time on the MBA. Dalik and his team mates worked on the case for a week leading up to the Challenge in March, investigating the possibility of Air Canada using biofuels in its operations.
“We spent some very long days and nights researching everything from biofuel policies to biofuel economics to biofuel supply chain to biofuel marketing,” Dalik said.
“By the end of the week each team member could speak confidently about the biofuel industry as a whole. That was a great learning outcome itself; finding out what it takes to research, synthesize and present a strong analysis in such a short period of time.”
The Sustainability Challenge hosted 16 teams from various countries to explore the intersection of business and sustainability. Dalik said he said he believes that if companies want to successfully make Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) part of their business, it needs to be a core value of the company
“I’m interested in the idea of corporate responsibility not being a special program or department within a company, but a mindset for an entire company,” Dalik said.
Learning more about CSR and also picking up some concrete lessons about case competitions (which he even wrote a blog post about), made the trip to his home country well worth it for Dalik, he said.
"I would definitely recommend business school students to take on the challenge of a case competition if they have the opportunity," Dalik said. "I'm so grateful to have had the chance myself."