Creative Employer Engagement at Babson College
A unique differentiator to Babson is our innovative approach to not only problem-solving, through our ETA (Entrepreneurial Thought & Action) method, but how we help our employer partners to build up their brands and to maximize their visibility with our students. This creative brand-building is accomplished in several ways. In addition to engaging with students through company presentations, and offices hours, we introduced a few new brand-building offerings this Fall for our employer partners.
The Undergraduate Center for Career Development launched a new series of Industry Spotlight events this past fall. These multi-employer events brought together recruiters and students for a night of industry-specific networking and career exploration. With events for accounting, finance, consulting, marketing, and technology industries – the program drew over 50 employers and 300 students. We hope you’ll join us next fall at one of these exciting events! Contact the Undergraduate Center for Career Development for more information.
This past fall we also expanded upon another unique way for employers to engage with Babson talent. The Design Thinking Club and the Graduate Center for Career Development partnered together to host two Employer Design Challenges with CVS Health and Liberty Mutual Insurance. For each event, fifty Babson students formed teams and worked in the new Design Zone to solve a problem for each of the companies. The teams conducted customer interviews, brainstorming sessions, and beta testing in less than an hour and pitched their solutions to a panel of judges representing the companies. CVS Health and Liberty Mutual were given multiple creative solutions to their challenges and were able to see Babson students in action in a fun and engaging environment. The companies were excited and impressed by the creative solutions presented by the students. CVS Health and Liberty Mutual recruiters loved the unique branding opportunity and especially enjoyed seeing the students in action. They also enjoyed meeting potential talent during the networking portion of the evening.
Thinking of hosting a Design Thinking Challenge at Babson? Here’s what it takes:
About the Design Thinking Model
Design Thinking is at heart, the philosophy of using a customer-centric approach to design relevant and actionable product and service solutions that meet a customer need while answering a pressing business problem. Empathy, collaborative creation, iteration and rapid testing and prototyping are key to this process.
In a company hosted Design Thinking Challenge event, the host company presents a specific challenge to a group of students who has been split into equal-size teams. A Babson faculty member takes the group through the design thinking method to develop creative solutions that address the company’s challenge. Each team then pitches their idea to a group of host company judges in 90 seconds or less. The winning team is announced and informal networking follows.
Elements of a good Design Thinking Challenge include the following:
● It asks an interesting question for students: Many students in the Design Thinking Club are interested in customer experience, new product development, product management and innovation departments
● It generates useful information for the company: While we realize that we can’t solve incredibly complex problems in an hour, the challenge is more interesting if the topic is a current interest for the company.
● Uses people in the room to conduct customer research: Ideally in a Design Thinking Challenge, participants would be able to spend time conducting customer interviews and watching potential customers in their environments. In these quick Design Thinking Challenges, we substitute this research by having the students in the room interview themselves. Therefore, the “target market” for the challenge should be the people in the room. For example the people in the room are: millennials, Bostonians, graduate students, job applicants, etc
Contact your Babson Relationship Manager today to schedule your Design Thinking Challenge event!