Wharton EMBA students have opportunities to do deep dives into a variety of topics around the world from consulting to supply chains to social impact. Last semester, Philadelphia student Todd Sierer tried his hand at consulting when he participated in the Global Consulting Practicum (GCP), an elective course. Last spring, we asked Todd, director of Americas sales for Edmund Optics in Barrington, NJ, to tell us about his GCP experience. Now that the course is finished, we caught up with him again to find out how the rest of the course went. Here’s what he said:
On Consulting in Brazil:
I wanted to participate in the GCP to gain exposure to a new industry and to learn more about Brazil. While I’m at Wharton, I want to push myself to learn things in ways that I wouldn’t be able to do anywhere else. The GCP project involved working with a firm looking to enter the Brazilian juice market. We were asked to evaluate market trends, competition, customer segmentation, and possible branding.
It was an interesting time to work on a project in Brazil, which has recently experienced financial upheaval. The economic situation impacted our recommendations because the way you enter that market in terms of your finance strategy and capital structure become that much more important. Even if you have the most amazing product, if you don’t have the right financial model in place to account for volatility, you could expose yourself to a lot of risk.
The last time I blogged, we had just returned from Brazil where we spent some time on the ground working on the project with our colleagues at a Chilean business school. Since then, we’ve worked hard together as a team to formulate our conclusions and recommendations.
Originally published on the Wharton Executive MBA site.