- Name: Vladimir Makhno
- Born (year): 1999
- Degree: Bachelor of Business Administration
1. When were you an active case student at BI and at which campus?
As soon as I joined BI, I attended the first case meeting and ever since then continued to be an active case solver (Fall 2019 – Fall 2021, Oslo).
2. Why did you decide to join BI’s case activities?
I heard about case competitions before I started my studies and was looking forward to becoming a part of it. Mainly, I wanted to challenge myself with real-life business challenges, get to know like-minded people, and build my network through various events.
3. What was the name of your case team and how did you find your teammates?
I was a part of three different case teams and all the names were chess related (Tal Consulting, Fischer Consulting, Deep Blue Consulting). All my teammates were either doing the same study program as me, or I met them in the case club.
4. Did you have a specific role on your team?
Mostly, I was concerned with the implementation part of the strategy. However, during the three years, I had every role possible during the case-solving event (financials, research, risks & mitigations, etc.).
5. Which case competitions did you take part in?
I participated in three international case competitions – CBS 2020 (Copenhagen Business School) Case Competition, JMUCC 2021 (John Molson Undergraduate Case Competition), and ROCA 2021 (Rotterdam-Carleton) Case Competition. In addition to these, I participated in two BINCC 2019 and 2020 (BI National Case Competition), and BIICC Open 2020 (BI International Case Competition 2020).
6. What is your best memory from your case journey at BI?
Every case had its highlights as, for example, the anticipation of the upcoming competition, the solving process itself, the feeling of finally being done the case, and all the various events you get to attend. However, the most memorable moment was last year during the ROCA competition. Our team came second in three business cases after a very long process of improvement and growth.
7. What are your top three takeaways from case training and competitions?
- Not every problem requires a complicated solution. Most of the time you will encounter that trying to reinvent the wheel is not very efficient when you have limited time.
- Trust in and communication with your team members are crucial. It is necessary to have a general feel of where you are in your solution and what is lacking. In addition, you have to trust your team with the allocated tasks, otherwise, it will slow down the whole process and lead to arguments.
- Case solving is a skill, and it requires a lot of hard work to become good at. Even though it can be stressful at times and physically, as well as mentally, draining, try to have fun with your team.
8. What skills did you learn from participating in case which were relevant to your development/career and how?
I could write several pages dedicated to this question, so I will just mention a few:
- Presenting skills will improve drastically and the fear of public speaking will become non-existent.
- When I first started, I could barely make any slides in PowerPoint. However, after three years, I am able to put all relevant information in a neat and nice way on my slides.
- I became much better at filtering information when I read and decide what should be included.
These are just a fraction of what I got to learn and improve: using Excel, working under pressure, critical thinking, teamwork, copywriting, and much more.
9. Do you have any advice to students who are curious about case?
If you want to get the closest to practical experience, you should definitely join the case club. You will get to absorb an incredible amount of business-related knowledge, get a better understanding of how various company departments work, and get to improve your critical thinking. The most important thing is that it will be hard sometimes and it takes a lot of work/time but, in the end, it will be worth it.