05 Mar 2019

Women Changing the Face of Business


In celebration of Women's History Month and International Women's Day, Cold Call presents past episodes featuring female case protagonists.

Cold Calling Stella McCartney

With her unique leadership style and innovative approach to green fashion, Stella McCartney shows that a luxury brand can be sustainable.

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The Amazing Life of One of America’s Earliest Black, Female Entrepreneurs

Though not everyone may know her name, Madam C.J. Walker helped invent what have become staples of our modern country and economy: national sales forces, corporate social responsibility, and, yes, even basic haircare. Orphaned at age 8, married at 14, and widowed at 20 with a daughter to raise, Walker went on to become a millionaire entrepreneur in the Deep South at the turn of the century, against all odds. Professor Nancy Koehn describes Walker’s inspiring real life story of making good on her own unique American dream.

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Hold on to Your Complexity: Bringing Multiple Identities to Work

Carla Ann Harris has blazed trails through and excelled at institutions like Harvard and Morgan Stanley. But doing so has required her to strike a careful balance between professional image and personal passions. Professor Lakshmi Ramarajan discusses Harris’ success and the importance of managing perceptions to achieve greatness.

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Black Business Leaders Series: Oprah’s Path to Authentic Leadership

Oprah Winfrey believes in sharing the experiences that led her to become the wealthiest woman in the entertainment industry and the first African American woman billionaire. Professor Bill George traces her growth from childhood, focusing on how and when she discovered her true voice and how that authenticity spurred her career success.

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One Love: Managing a Movement Against Relationship Violence

The One Love Foundation is a group dedicated to the prevention of relationship violence through education. Professor Tom DeLong talks about the challenges CEO Katie Hood faces as the organization works to create a movement and then maintain momentum around community engagement, fundraising, and growth.

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The Transformation of Microsoft

In early 2015, Microsoft CFO Amy Hood and the rest of the senior leadership team faced a fundamental choice. Was the company ready to invest in long-term growth at the expense of some short-term profit margins? Professor Fritz Foley discusses how leadership faced these difficult decisions, and worked to get investors and employees on board.

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L.A. Philharmonic Shows the American Symphony Orchestra Isn’t Dead Yet

The Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra faced real challenges that most US orchestras confront: an aging subscriber base, little interest from younger audiences, and development of a pipeline of donors for the future. Rohit Deshpande discusses how CEO Deborah Borda positioned the orchestra for continued success, building on healthy financials, a celebrity music director, the beautiful Walt Disney Concert Hall, and the development of a youth orchestra.

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How Chase Sapphire Made Credit Cool for Millennials

The Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card was one of the hottest product launches in 2016, enthusiastically received by millennial consumers, a group that had previously eluded JPMorgan Chase and its competitors. Shelle Santana discusses how protagonists Pam Codispoti and Eileen Serra shifted their focus to retaining customers attracted by the one-time signup bonus of 100,000 reward points and on acquiring new customers now that the bonus had been reduced.

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Could a Hackathon Help Solve the Heroin Crisis?

What’s the value of crowdsourcing technological solutions to societal problems? Could a hackathon help solve the heroin crisis in Cincinnati, Ohio? Professor Mitch Weiss discusses the underlying skepticism and emerging realities that unfold during protagonist Annie Rittgers’ journey to organizing a successful hackathon in his case "Hacking Heroin."

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IDEO is Changing the Way Managers Think About Thinking

IDEO’s human-centered design thinking is a systematic methodology used to help create new products and services. The best part: The company is open about how it works and how to adopt it. Professor Ryan Buell explores this process through the example of Cineplanet, a leading movie cinema chain in Peru. The company hired IDEO to help them determine how to better align their operating model with the needs of its customers. This case study may change the way you think about thinking.

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Black Business Leaders Series: The Entrepreneurship Behind Ebony Magazine

For more than seven decades, "Ebony" magazine has chronicled the most important African American issues of its time. Steven Rogers examines how the company faced the stark challenges in the rapidly changing media landscape of 2015.

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