The #FruitsOfLabor Story Pt37 – Harvard Business School II
The journey to Boston, MA was smooth. A typical late night packing/early morning flight transition. I touched down in Boston on Friday afternoon. Caught an Uber to meet with my guys Ralph and Walt at a Jamaican restaurant in Roxbury. We did some light shopping downtown then rushed back towards Cambridge for the Opening Keynote. We would hear from the President of Ariel Investments, Mellody Hobson. Her story reminded me that fate favors the fearless! Afterwards, we linked up with a few classmates in the dorms and I used the down time to do some reading. I was blown because I had forgotten my current book, How to win friends & influence people at home, but as I surveyed Ralph’s bookshelf what do I find? The same book! Great minds think alike. What a favored way to launch my weekend.
The 43rd H. Naylor Fitzhugh Conference kicked off again early Saturday morning. I was looking forward to the first speaker of the day, Kaseem Dean aka Swizz Beats. He is a current HBS student enrolled in the Executive Education program. Reflecting, I remember listening to Swizz Beats & DMX in 1998 on the Ruff Ryders’ cassette tapes! It was high priority for me to find a good seat and hear what he had to say. I’m very glad I did, his insight was authentic and inspiring! Next, we migrated to Aldrich Hall for two panel discussions, Entrepreneurship Spectrum & Diversity in Silicon Valley. As an entrepreneur heavily involved in social media and internet marketing, these panels were empowering to say the least.
We concluded in Spangler Hall with a keynote selection from former McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson. Mr. Thompson has received several leadership awards throughout his career, so I was very interested in hearing his approach to managing and developing people. He delivered the insight and comedy that we all were hoping for. The conference adjourned for the networking reception and I gathered my fellow Hamptonians for an epic group pic, then jolted to an empty classroom to conduct the first interview of #ShineHard Season 2. Very excited to share this one!
Overall, I took so many gems and notes away from Harvard Business School in a nutshell. I truly attacked this experience as if I am an actual HBS student. Trying to visualize life as if I were a student there. Would I fit in? What makes this experience so special? What does this network have to offer? After two years of attending this event, I’ve discovered the answers.