What do you want your reputation to be?

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Recently one of our professors teaching Managerial Decision Making to a group of new Executive MBA students asked them to provide feedback on how their learning experience benefited from the contributions of classmates. Students were asked to call out up to 20 classmates that contributed the most to what they learned during class discussions, by discussing and applying concepts, offering insights and personal examples, and/or in other ways. In just a short time in the program students are starting to distinguish themselves along this dimension and build the reputations that will serve them well beyond graduation day. In my welcome remarks I urge our new students to think about the kind of reputation they want to build with classmates. With the benefit of a future yet to be written, each student has a chance to create their own page in the history of the class. I truly hope among the names that were circled in the professor's evaluations were students that took my words to heart on that first day and sought to make the classroom a richer experience for everyone. While the rewards for such behaviors are mostly intrinsic, my experience tells me that those are exactly the students that classmates will go out of their way to help in the future. An Executive MBA program is an exceptional platform from which to spring to new heights and the savvy students figure out early-on that the spring is a lot higher when you take others with you.  

Glenn Sykes, London.