Who knew a backpack could start so many conversations? From the first day I started researching MBA programs, I was drawn to Kellogg for the networking. I felt Kellogg provided the best opportunity to meet diverse leaders from around the world through its heavy emphasis on teamwork. So far, the program has exceeded my expectations while adding something I was not expecting. I am meeting MBA students and alumni from other business schools across the country.
Within the past month my standard issue Kellogg backpack has introduced me to a Kellogg EMP-36 graduate, a Harvard Business School graduate, a USC (Marshall) graduate, and an MBA student at the University of Chicago (Booth). Now I am aware that a backpack cannot make an introduction, but it certainly does start conversations at the airport, which is where you can usually find me when I am not at work, home or the office. Travel is a big part of my job and the airport is like a second office for me. I get to fly all over the world and help CB clients perform at a high level by attracting and retaining their top employees. You can usually find me and my Kellogg backpack in an Admirals club kicked back with some Stats homework and our friend Jack Daniels. JD and Stats work well together. By the way, I discovered all regressions are linear with enough drinks.
Anyway, the conversations usually begin when someone sees my backpack and says, “You going to Kellogg?” I say, “Yes I am. Did you go to Kellogg?” The rest is history. Whether they attended Kellogg or another school; the conversation is underway. We immediately have a lot to talk about. The long hours, the classmates, the final exams are just a few common topics. My favorite backpack introduction just happened, which inspired this topic. I just met the VP of Investments (HBS grad) of a large financial services company in the security line at Logan International (Boston Airport). The backpack started the conversation which ended with us agreeing to meet up in Chicago next week to discuss the challenges she is facing recruiting financial analysts. Without my Kellogg backpack, the conversation and the subsequent affinity would not have happened. I knew the Kellogg network was powerful, but I never anticipated “the power of the backpack”.