Meeting with students adds valuable perspectives and gives a sense of what’s important to co-workers, customers, and partners, says John Gibe, digital strategist at IBM, after visiting LUSEM.
John Gibe and Mikael Haglund from IBM visited Mirella Muhic and her students on the Master’s course Strategic Management and Information Systems at Lund University School of Economics and Management. It is an international class consisting of more than 50 students from all continents except Antarctica, aged between 20 and 38 with extensive background experience.
The students are well prepared for their roles as IT leaders. While the students learn to face challenges that businesses can meet in the information society, by working on practical problems they might encounter in their future, they also study and analyse frameworks and theories that can be used as the tools for good IT leadership.
Building competitiveness by information technology
An additional fundamental theme is found in the capabilities of technology: how to use IT to build a sustainable and competitive strategy through, for example, tailor-made systems, integration between systems, operations, and organizational structure. Students also investigate how developing information technology can affect competition and give a competitive advantage.
“My lecture was about IBM, management consulting, Digital Reinvention, and the case study Vasaloppet,” says John Gibe, digital strategist at IBM and alumnus from LUSEM.
Students are important to IBM
The students were also given the opportunity to formulate a Digital Reinvention strategy for any Swedish company. Mikael Haglund, CTO IBM Sweden, has shared his knowledge of cognitive technology, machine learning and the new skills of the management team in the same course on several occasions.
“For IBM, this is an excellent opportunity for knowledge-based society engagement. Contact with research environments and students creates new issues and perspectives—and gives a sense of what is interesting and important for prospective employees, customers, and partners. Several students have listened to the lectures with questions and ideas,” says John Gibe.
Education benefits from guest lectures
“All students can relate to IBM in some way. It is a well-known company that many people would like to work for. For us, at the university, it is a huge advantage to have an internationally renowned company as a guest,” says Mirella Muhic, doctoral student at the Department of Informatics at LUSEM.
“What’s most interesting is when the lecture is linked to the course content and when there is a chance to ask questions and get answers right where you are. This will also attract other students and organizations. The course evaluation shows that IBM's guest lectures have been highly appreciated among the students.”