USPS needs logistics planning consultants?

USPS needs logistics planning consultants?

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” reads the inscription at the James Farley Post Office here in NYC, and perhaps it was true in 1912 when the building was erected but a hundred and two years later, the USPS has seen a bit of vision misalignment, or at least they ought to consider chipping away at that whole “swift” thing. Does the USPS need to hire ogistics planning consultants, the TL;DR is yes, but here’s the why.

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Group Manic Depression of Startupian Entrepreneurship

No one ever said it was easy, that’s for sure, and working on all sorts of interesting projects, working with startups, helping them define model, strategy, what have you has definitely shown me one thing that is pretty evident in the sphere of the start-up entrepreneur.

Cyclical, or better yet “Group Manic Depression”.

What I mean by this is that at any startup, there are….

the good times:
Hanging out with your co-founders over a beer,
talking about how your product can change the world,
augment experiences, initiate new behavior in people, so on and so forth

and the bad times:
You’re down in the dumps,
finding bugs that are virtually impossible to fix with your limited coding skills,
being rejected by venture capitalists (who by the way are lovely people, but sometimes miss the big picture, Google anyone),
permanently on the cusp of bankruptcy and …
racking up ridiculous credit card debt.

You float between the two, because the mania keeps you going, and the depression, keeps you in check, and the cycle repeats itself until that moment when you launch your product and lo’ and behold start getting users or clients, or both, and start getting in those first trickles of cash, that soon turn into clumps, and lumps, and then heaps of the green stuff, of course given your idea actually had mettle.

And the next thing you know, it’s rinse and repeat, because unfortunately entrepreneurship is a drug.


MBA’s, Internships and Start ups.

There’s a reason why firms pay top money for MBA interns from some of the top schools across Europe and the U.S. They’re worth it. So the question is… how can you capitalize on what large established companies such as Goldman and McK have known and used for years?

Well, here’s the good news. On average entrepreneurial interest in MBA programmes is high, and annually approximately 10% of MBA’s go off to start companies on their own or join start-ups. Figures differ from school to school and when approaching a MBA programme it’s advisable to see what the school specializes in. NYU Stern for example is known for Finance, whereas IE in Madrid is known for Entrepreneurship.

GETTING TO KNOW YOU

That said, get involved with the school, call up the school’s entrepreneurship club, see what activities they have planned and see if you can participate. MBA’s are hungry to know what the life of an Entrepreneur is like, some of the trials and tribulations you’ve gone though, issues that you’ve had with acquiring funding and so on and so forth.

If you’re and earlier stage entrepreneur MBA’s are a fantastic source of critique when it comes to your business model.You can often have them analyze it, dissect it, and present their findings for next to nothing.

When it actually comes to getting an intern. The best thing to do is present your company at the school. Many professors will happily invite you to speak, and if for whatever reason you’re not able to book a class, then the school’s entrepreneurial club will be thrilled to have you. Also, be sure to advertise your position with the school’s career services. They’ll add you to the database, and will in all likelihood include your offer in their weekly newsletter as well as their online application system.

GETTING TO KNOW ALL ABOUT YOU

When it comes to the interview there are a few major things to remember, and while they may seem obvious we’re still going to mention them.

  • Treat current students as equals. Nothing is wore than heading in for an interview and having the interviewer ask you to sing your favorite song (true story from a Forture 500 company interview, in fact why don’t we call them on it as this type of practice should stop, it was TechData), and after all you’ll be working with them for a few months.
  • Ask questions to see the way the person thinks. Being a start up, you’ll be working closely together, and culture, fit, mix, whatever you call is about the most important thing in building your team.
  • Pick someone that compliments you. It’s easy to hire someone just like you and with a similar background. See where your lacking, what can you improve on, and what area of your business needs the most attention, and get the person who can do that job right.

GETTING TO HOPE YOU LIKE ME

Once you’ve chosen your candidate and shortlisted two more be sure to give them an offer that’s fair. If you’ve been funded, offer them a salary. It doesn’t have to be a Morgan Stanley salary, but try and offer something. MBA’s know that you’re short on cash, and they’ll be appreciative of the fact that you can pay them.

If you haven’t been funded and can’t offer cash incentives, be frank and say so upfront. But do express what you can offer, knowledge, insight, networking, day to day entrepreneurial experience.

Did we miss anything?

MBA’s, Entrepreneurship & Growth Companies

While entrepreneurship as a whole is a fairly central topic to most MBA curriculum and a good number of schools have entrepreneurship clubs that organize minor events, and amongst other things panel discussions with successful entrepreneurs. A few programmes have taken their involvement with the entrepreneurship community to the next level.

LBS is one such school where it’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Speaker series focuses on bringing in successful entrepreneurs who students can learn from, INSEAD is another with the Global Entrepreneurship Forum will feature a close look at the global trends in angel investing, fire pitches by leading entrepreneurs searching for funding, a panel discussion on effective entrepreneurial leadership and the announcement of an initiative to celebrate INSEAD’s leading entrepreneurs.

At ESADE in Barcelona the entrepreneurship club has organized the “Quest for Talent” a conference inviting not only growth companies to attend and look for top talent form the region’s top MBA programs, but also, strongly focuses on MBA students interested in entrepreneurship as well as on startuppers seeking partners – overall a novel and innovative approach.

In the U.S. schools have been doing this for some time now, the Stanford business plan competition is among one of the most recognized in the country, and MIT’s commitment to entrepreneurship with it’s Entrepreneurship Center, 100k Competition, Executive summary contest, and the b. plan contest goes far and beyond that of other institutions of the same caliber. Though whether “twitch” is a good idea or just more hogwash around twitter is yet to be seen.

It’s safe to say that the collaboration between enterprise and academia initiated by student initiatives is on the rise. But what is more important is the initiative that can be seen at an event such as Quest for Talent and its focus on growth companies. Considering the need for expansion in human capital as well as market, there is a clear need for growth companies to hire and bring on MBA’s to take the reigns and lead those companies forward – and likewise MBA’s should look for jobs within growth companies aside from your typical blue chips, banks, and consultancies. Why? Reason being – more of an active stake in the role, more of an impact on the company as a whole, and of course a possibility of options. If that company goes M&A, or IPO – it means a big cash payout.