A.T. Kearney's Global Prize gives MBAs a taste of life as a consultant, as teams compete to crack a real life case, with AT Kearney partners playing the role of the client!
Throughout the competition students interact with A.T. Kearney consultants who play the role of clients in simulations, provide feedback to the teams, and share their insights on consulting.
The competition has three stages. First, a local stage where teams of four students vie for a chance to represent their school at the regional final. The first placed team from each school shares a cash prize and moves to the next stage.
Second, at the regional stage school winners compete for the satisfaction of being the best in their region and another cash award of €2,000.
At the final stage, the North American winners compete against the European winners, with the overall champion claiming the Global Prize of €8,000.
Some of the schools that participated in the event this year included Kellogg School of Management – Northwestern, Michigan - Ross, Wharton, Columbia Business School, Chicago Booth, Carnegie Mellon – Tepper, Cranfield School of Management, HEC Paris, INSEAD, Judge Business School, London Business School, Rotterdam School of Management, Saïd Business School and SDA Bocconi.
The task for students at the final stage was to find a solution for a French package delivery company suffering from shifts in the marketplace, aggressive competitors and a decline in profitability.
Teams had to present their ideas and an implementation plan in front of three A.T. Kearney Partners and Principals who were acting as the client.
SDA Bocconi was represented by a multinational team composed of Alec McCullie from the UK, Artem Dubinskiy from Russia, Ivayla Tzvetkova from Canada, and Mauricio Angeli from Venezuela.The competition tested students in areas such as analytics, risk awareness, communicating with clients, and working as a team.
The SDA Bocconi students drew on the strengths of their respective backgrounds. Ivayla said, “As a team, we have found strength from our diverse cultures, knowledge and professional backgrounds."
SDA Bocconi's team spanned several industries. Alec is a Chartered Engineer with over nine years of experience of working in automotive design and development in projects based in Germany, Spain, Austria, Japan and the UK. He is also the president of Bocconi’s Entrepreneur’s Club. Artem worked in management consulting for ARD Consulting. Mauricio Angeli worked in marketing and advertising in Venezuela! Ivayla Tzvetkova has more than seven years of experience in client relationship management, project management and customer service with the likes of Disney World, HSBC, BMO Financial Group, and Berkeley Payment Solutions.
SDA Bocconi’s team beat off competition from HEC Paris, INSEAD, London Business School and Saïd Business School to be crowned the European champion. They then competed against students from Columbia Business School in the finals, which were held via video conference. The judges awarded SDA Bocconi first place based on “Excellent preparation, analytical capabilities and teamwork”.
"The competition was very realistic and the analysis by the jury was very rigorous, therefore to win is very satisfying," said Ivayla. "A partner of the jury even asked us if we were available to start work with them the next day!”
Pierluigi Addessi, Senior Manager of A.T. Kearney Italia and SDA Bocconi MBA class of 2006, said, “I believe the Global Prize for students is a unique opportunity to understand closely the profession of business consulting, experiencing first-hand the different phases of a project.
"Like every year, we have got to know the participants closely and we have appreciated their talent and quality," he added. "In fact, in our Italian office, the victory of SDA Bocconi was received with great pride and enthusiasm, as if we had won ourselves.”
Read more stories about students, alumni and programmes at SDA Bocconi School of Management, here