B-School Bulletin: Will Penn Grad Students Form A Union?

5 Factors That Fuel Income Inequality

News from University of Virginia Darden School of Business

“Peter Belmi still remembers how surprised he was when one of the Stanford Graduate School of Business courses he took, called Paths to Power, turned out much differently than he expected.

“Belmi, now a professor at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business, thought he would be hearing about the work and sacrifice it took for executives to reach the top of their field, and he did hear some of that. Mostly, though, the class was a lesson in workplace politics, power plays and the competitive – and sometimes not so meritocratic — advancement dynamics in many corporate structures in Silicon Valley and elsewhere.

“’Having always heard that hard work will lead to success, I freaked out,’ he said. ‘I struggled to accept the idea that it was necessary to engage in political maneuvering to get ahead. Or at least, it seemed as if there was this widespread idea that you needed to play politics to get ahead in most workplaces in the U.S. If that was what it took to have power, did I even want it?’”

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Adam Kleinbaum co-authored the recent study on friendship

Dartmouth Study: Friends Think Alike

News from Dartmouth College Tuck School of Business

“Researchers at Dartmouth College have applied hard data to once-philosophical questions about the nature of friendship, using brain scans to track how friends think alike.

“Using magnetic resonance imaging technology, a trio of scientists recently mapped the social networks and neural responses of an incoming class of students at the Tuck School of Business. The results, published in Nature Communications last month, show that the closer people are socially connected, the more they think alike.

“’We thought this would be a great tool to see if people really do see the world more similarly when they’re friends,’ said Thalia Wheatley, an associate professor of psychology who co-authored the study with Adam Kleinbaum, an associate professor of business at Tuck, and Carolyn Parkinson, an assistant professor of social psychology at University of California Los Angeles who recently completed her graduate work at Dartmouth.”

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When Winning Means Losing In Negotiations

News from INSEAD

“A common belief is that when we negotiate, we should push hard to get the best possible deal. Indeed, sometimes choosing a power-based strategy and pushing hard can yield great deals. Other times, power-based negotiations can raise resistance and lead to an impasse. But failure aside, the two most likely outcomes of power-based negotiations have long been assumed to be this: If you have more power than the counterparty, you win; otherwise, you lose. However, new research shows a third possible outcome: You may win, but you don’t get the value you expected.

“Indeed many negotiators become emotionally attached to a desired outcome and lose sight of the bigger picture. They develop negotiation tunnel vision and forget to craft a deal that produces the best actual results. After the excitement of closing their preferred deal, comes the reality and constraints their counterparty will face when delivering on commitments. Saying yes is often just the beginning of the relationship and what we then do may frame it in good or bad ways.”

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Lagos, Nigeria

What Does Entrepreneurship Look Like In An African Context?

News from Yale School of Management 

“With cooling commodity prices, Africa’s economies are no longer seeing the rapid growth that led to hopes of a continent-wide rise just a few years ago. Nonetheless, there’s a promising trend: young Africans who went overseas for their education returning with advanced degrees and a determination to make a difference.

“Surveys found that 70% of African MBA students from top U.S. and European business schools and 90% of African PhD students plan to return to work in Africa. ‘There is a sense of responsibility,’ said Guy Kamguia, a Cameroonian-American with a Harvard MBA, talking with Quartz, ‘There’s a genuine sense that if you’re not going back to fix Africa, who is going to do it?’

“While the ‘brain gain’ may be picking up its pace, it’s by no means a new phenomenon. A generation ago, Hakeem Belo-Osagie earned a law degree from Cambridge University and an MBA from Harvard. In a conversation at Yale SOM, he talked about applying business school tools effectively in a developing economy context.”

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GreenLight Workshop Combines Environment, Business

News from Yale SOM

Walking past Evans Hall in the School of Management last Friday afternoon, one would likely have noticed the array of Post-it notes stuck to the windows and the cries of ‘Yes, and?’ coming from within. The event was not, as it seemed at a glance, an improvisational comedy session, but rather a GreenLight ideation workshop that drew roughly 30 student participants.

“GreenLight, a program run by the Yale Center for Business and the Environment, was founded in 2014 by two graduate students pursuing joint degrees in the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and School of Management. The program itself comprises a series of brainstorming workshops focused on solving problems at the crossroads of business and the environment.”

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