Yue Cai Hillon, PhD, leads the class on Integrative Management at Western Carolina University. As part of the Western Carolina University MBA Program and the local Small Business & Technology Development Center (SBTDC) affiliated with WCU, these students visited Sanesco and spent over 140 hours transcribing interviews held individually with our entire staff, over 20 employees, from Sanesco International.
The project involved two main components: first, to look at the competitive landscape for Sanesco, including long-term trends in our industry, our competitors’ profiles, and target customer profiles to develop specific market strategies. Secondly, to complete an in-depth diagnostic of Sanesco’s internal operational performance, with the diagnostic phase then leading to suggestions for better efficiency and management of employee human potential.
These students used the Socio-Economic Approach to Management (SEAM) approach, conceived in France and practiced since 1973, in particular to gain objective insight into hidden costs & opportunities.
Competitive intelligence research uses business modeling tools and up-to-date software to investigate business opportunities and threats, coupled with SEAM; organizations can attain a more holistic competitive landscape for future development. SEAM focuses on simultaneously improving the enterprise’s economic and social performance. By understanding the multiple challenges and the regulatory actions to dismiss these challenges, an enterprise can quantify and measure the hidden potential and costs, as well as their impact. Therefore, we at Sanesco can develop appropriate actions to help eliminate challenges and their resulted unnecessary waste.
Sanesco was connected to this partnership at WCU from the. These WCU students are working professionals working towards their MBA. 2/3 of the participating students are expected to graduate and achieve their MBA this year.
The students’ final presentation took place at Biltmore Park in Asheville, NC on December 8, 2015. The class made an in-person presentation to the company, including a review of competitive intelligence, geospatial analysis, and SEAM diagnostics, as well as a final executive report presenting a synthesis of all findings.
We were delighted with our experience and presentation from the MBA group. Student consulting has been a valuable resource to help our small business plan and shape our company goals with strategic planning resources and insight. Sanesco is extremely grateful for all the students’ hard work, our partnership with the SBTDC, and our thriving connection with both Western Carolina University and their faculty and staff.