Real Life. Real Business
Dear Alumni and Friends,
Some problems are good and bad. One of our good problems is that
our real life, real business experiential approach to business
education is unique, value-added, and attracts talented students
and interested employers. But that good problem is also bad because
not enough people know what we do. Well, that's beginning to change
and we're planning to change that even more.
First, in terms of beginning to change, I'd like to point you to
an article entitled, New and
Improved: B-School Curriculum, which was published in
BizEd magazine in its January/February issue.
BizEd is published by AACSB International, which is the
premier accrediting agency for business schools worldwide. (Yes,
we're AACSB accredited.) One of the pull-out statements in the
article says "Three schools radically revamp their programs to stay
relevant in the complex and quick-moving world of business." Those
three business schools are Butler, Columbia and Villanova - not bad
company if you can keep it! Please take a look. We do more than
hold our own with these prestigious schools of business.
Second, in terms of our plans to increase awareness about our
real life, real business approach, we have established a Strategic
Marketing Advisory Board, which is a group of marketing
professionals who we approached to help us create an ambitious
branding initiative in the college. We had our first meeting in
March. I will keep you posted as we begin the rollout of our real
life, real business brand over the coming year.
Though it seems a small step - there are many more to come - one
of the first is to change our name from the College of Business
Administration to the College of Business. So why turn the CBA into
the CoB? In the 1980s and 1990s, many schools and colleges of
business administration became schools and colleges of business to
reflect (1) that in addition to "administration" or management
degrees, they also offered degrees in accounting, finance,
marketing, etc., and (2) that they were no longer schools and
colleges "of business and public administration." So for those
reasons, we are now the Butler College of Business.
Butler Business Accelerator
One of our biggest points of pride and differentiation is the
Butler Business Accelerator, which is an in-house, consulting firm
designed to serve mid-market companies in Central Indiana.
Supported by a $22 million grant from the Lilly Endowment, the
Accelerator was created as an extension of the CoB's real life,
real business mission. The objectives of the Accelerator are to
transform business education at Butler, advance Indiana's economy
and assist in reducing the state's brain drain.
We have an impressive group of consultants and business
professionals working for the Accelerator. They not only work as
full-time consultants, they are also involved in the classroom. The
Accelerator is led by Larry O'Connor, Executive Director, and Brian
Landis, Managing Director. Larry is the former president and CEO of
Bank One Indiana and the former interim director and CEO of the
Indianapolis Museum of Art. Brian Landis has over 28 years of
experience in industry and consulting and is a former partner with
The Accelerator works with privately-owned, Central Indiana
companies that have been in business for at least five years, have
$5 million to $50 million in annual sales, and are profitable and
poised for growth. The Accelerator offers fee-based consulting
services and utilizes proven methodologies to create measurable
results in the areas of business strategy, operational discipline,
organizational development, marketing strategy and sales, and CFO
The Accelerator is different from other consulting firms in that
it can either help a client through a focused engagement, or
partner with an organization to implement a four-step approach that
evaluates the entire business and ensures client success. The
four-step process begins with a strategic analysis of the company,
evaluates growth planning, implements the suggestions, and
continually partners with clients to periodically assess and adjust
the strategy. A $1 million investment fund is available to enable
selected clients to obtain the funding needed to implement growth
The Accelerator has been remarkably successful in helping its
clients prosper and grow. To date, 37 client projects have been
completed with 19 companies. Current and past clients include
Gilchrist & Soames, SaniServ, Cannon IV, Royal Food Products,
Grueninger Travel, TF Publishing, Langham, Wellspring Pharmacy,
Shrewsberry, SePRO, Estes Design and Manufacturing, Cornerstone
Flooring, LE and Horner. Click here to watch testimonial videos
featuring Saniserv and Langham.
What kind of results can clients expect working with the
- One company experienced a 35% increase in sales, resulting in a
four-fold increase in free cash flow within one year of working
with the Accelerator to develop its marketing strategy.
- Another company's first quarter sales increased by 25% after
the Accelerator assisted management in constructing an annual,
growth-focused profit plan that better utilized the company's
- A third client experienced an annual treasury savings of
$35,000 based on the Accelerator's analysis and
Over $1 million in inventory reduction opportunities were revealed
to a fourth client.
To learn more about the Butler Business Accelerator (including
how our consultants may be able to help your own company grow),
visit our website. The Accelerator has been
featured in the Indianapolis Business Journal, the
Indianapolis Star and on Inside Indiana Business.
Click here to watch the videos and read
If you would like to know more about what the Accelerator can do
for your company, please email
me. I welcome your comments and suggestions. In next month's
letter, I'll share how the Accelerator is helping us transform the
way business education is delivered at Butler's College of
I look forward to hearing from you!
Chuck Williams, Dean
College of Business
P.S. If you're interested in finding ways to get involved with the
College of Business, please download the document, How to Partner and
Get Involved, and review the 20 options available to
individuals and their organizations. Specific contact information
is available for each option.