Jeff Brown and Dan WallaceBy Tina Wiggins, Graduate Business Career Services

There are hot-button words used, and often overused, in business—words like synergy, strategy, vision, mission. These have been heavy hitters for years, but consider the words “why” or “how”? Perhaps these words may seem rather simplistic, but Jeff Brown and Dan Wallace want to challenge that thinking in order to reach another level of business success and satisfaction. Brown stated, “I focus on the blue sky first, then on the bottom line.”

Brown, previously of Disney and Apple, and Wallace, a UST MBA alum and marketing consultant, recently presented at the UST MBA Master’s Connection breakfast. The two focus on uniting leaders and teams around shared purpose. Sounds easy enough, and with some thought, it may be. In a previous Master’s Connection, the duo spoke on “Questioning Your Way to Why,” the steps to defining that shared purpose. Instead of starting with what you want to do, start with WHY you want to do it.

Their presentation was so popular that over half of the attendees returned to develop and define their “How.”

What defines your “How” is really nothing more than detailing the ways in which businesses do what they do? Ask yourself:  Who can help you get to where you want to go?  Who knows what you need to know?  What are your customer’s values?  In essence, “How” replaces “Strategy” and points toward action.  It reveals behavior; it signals intention, requires experimentation, and begs more open-ended questions from both vendor and customer.  Your “How,” is invaluable, marketable, and empowering.

The next UST MBA Master’s Connection will be held in October.