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Business Change Management

Business Change Management

How A Blue Ocean Strategy® Is Right for Delaware Valley University

On Aug 6, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andi and Andy Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Andrea Simon, Higher Education, anthropology

Higher ed is “On the Brink” of big "Blue Oceans"

Higher education is an old, established system facing a fast-changing market space — not a good mix. If you are in higher education in 2019, you are well aware of the challenges you are facing. What do you do if you are not among the top 50 colleges in the country with major endowments and large numbers of potential student applicants? What is your role and for whom? Could a Blue Ocean Strategy help you find your purpose and successfully attract today's generation of students?

Delaware Valley University: case study of a successful Blue Ocean Strategy

These were the challenges facing Delaware Valley University (DelVal) when they hired us to do Blue Ocean work with them. They were asking big strategic questions. Our job was to help them find the right answers. You might be facing the same problems as well: too few students, shifting demands of faculty and staff, challenges from the workplace, and questions about the real value of a college education.

What really impressed us about DelVal's leadership was how they wanted to share their Blue Ocean Strategy work to help other higher ed organizations of all shapes and sizes step back and rethink where they are going and how they are going to get there — big strategy questions. So after helping Maria Gallo (DelVal's president) and her team successfully construct a new strategic plan for the University, we turned our work with them into a comprehensive case study which we offer here as a white paper. 

Find ways to meet unmet needs in ways the competition isn't 

This white paper is designed to help you shift from competing in a "red ocean" with other colleges and universities to finding innovative ways to tackle students’ unmet needs, and seeking nonusers who could actually become enrolled “users,” albeit in different ways than in the past. That, in a nutshell, is what Blue Ocean Strategy is all about.

To download our white paper, "Delaware Valley University Embraces Blue Ocean Strategy®," click below.

Download DelVal University Blue Ocean Strategy White Paper

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What Makes Arizona State University the Most Innovative College in the US?

On May 1, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andi and Andy Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Andrea Simon, corporate anthropologist, Higher Education

At Simon Associates Management Consultants (SAMC), we have been working with a wide range of colleges on Blue Ocean Strategy®, encouraging long-established institutions to step back and look at themselves with fresh eyes.

Why must they do this, and why now? Because times are changing. Colleges, universities, trade schools and all other educational institutions are competing for a smaller and smaller base of high school graduates seeking a college education. In fact, traditional high school graduates now represent only 20% of college student bodies, with the other 80% filled by post-traditional students from all walks of life.

The challenge in higher education: to create innovative solutions that better match the needs of students

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What Can Community Colleges Expect From the US Chamber of Commerce in Terms of Job Skill Creation?

On Apr 30, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Higher Education

To put this article into context, I recently attended a meeting of college presidents. One of the keynote speakers was the senior HR director of a large manufacturing company lamenting the fact that small liberal arts colleges are not necessarily training students for the workplace or providing them with the technical skills necessary for success after graduation.

Times have changed but colleges and universities have not

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Who Are the Successful Innovators in Higher Education?

On Apr 10, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andi and Andy Simon

Categories: Andrew Simon, Andrea Simon, Blue Ocean Strategy, Higher Education

For many years, we have been working with colleges, universities and higher education associations, primarily conducting Blue Ocean Strategy® workshops and implementing branding and marketing strategic plans. And what we've been seeing lately is that academic leaders are finally realizing that they can no longer wait for their students of the past to return. More and more, they're waking up to the fact that if they don’t start implementing innovative, radically new ways of doing things, they may not have a way forward in the not too distance future. In short, they know they have to change.

Therefore, as change experts, we thought it would be very timely to share some of the major developments we're observing in higher ed and the impactful and fruitful ways in which several institutions are embracing change. 

Higher education today is at a crossroads.

All around the country, colleges and universities are facing more challenges than at any other time in their history. 

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What Higher Education Needs Is A More Powerful, Blue Ocean Strategy®

On Dec 7, 2018 7:54:58 AM

/ Andi and Andy Simon

Categories: Culture Change, Corporate Anthropology, Blue Ocean Strategy, Higher Education

A perfect storm of disconnect: higher education and changing times

At SAMC, we do a good deal of work with higher education institutions. Why? Because we're all about culture change and helping organizations find their Blue Ocean Strategy so they can adapt to what's coming (or in many cases, what's already here). And what we're finding is that today's colleges and universities desperately need both — culture change and Blue Ocean Strategy.

Case in point: If you look at classrooms from the years 1900, 1950 and today, you might be surprised, or dismayed, to see that they are all very much the same. Take a look:

While this antiquated educational system still hasn’t changed much, the world outside is changing faster than ever before. What to do?

Higher education needs to re-think its entire approach

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Is This The Death of Higher Education Institutions?

On Jul 10, 2018 7:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Igniting Change, Education, Higher Education

Do you see what we see in the world of higher education? Is this the death of higher education institutions as we know them?

For the past 18 months, I have been blogging about higher education.

Part of our portfolio of assignments includes strategic work we have conducted for higher learning institutions. Challenging is the disconnect between the institution and the workplace. There appears to be a built-in bias against the needs of industry. This resistance has created a reluctance on the part of administrations and faculty to understand what their students will need to succeed after they leave the university. Why are colleges failing their students?

Our research among employers delivers a recurring theme: please, they say, you are sending us students with excellent technical skills but without the people skills that they need to communicate, coordinate, collaborate and creatively solve problems. Industry seems to be responsible for those softer skills that higher education should be instilling in their students.

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How to Capture the ROI of a College Education

On Jan 3, 2018 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Blue Ocean, Education, business growth strategies, Higher Education, business model innovation

In a recent Atlantic magazine, Bryan Caplan, author of The Case Against Education, writes a very caustic, albeit truthful analysis of the current state of higher education in the U.S.

In this particular article among many he has written, The World Might be Better Off Without College for Everyone, there is a litany of reasons why our approach to educating our population for society, for jobs, for productive lives, is flawed, failing and fallen.

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So, What Are Liberal Arts Colleges Missing?

On May 15, 2017 3:03:39 PM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Higher Education

I have written several blogs lately about how students are graduating from colleges and universities with few marketable skills and therefore are largely unprepared to get high-paying jobs in today’s workplace. They can’t service debt, can’t buy cars and certainly can’t afford houses. Not great for our economy!

Although the U.S. educational system has flaws, one state gets it.

In an effort to reverse this trend and make college more affordable and accessible for all, New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo announced in January that tuition will be free for residents who earn up to a certain income cap to be phased in over the first three years of the program.

Undergraduates attending a State University of New York or City University of New York school will be eligible for the Excelsior Scholarship if their families earn less than $100,000 a year. That will rise to $110,000 in the second year and $125,000 in the third year, 2019. Those who qualify will pay nothing for tuition, which costs $6,470 annually at four-year schools and about $4,350 at community colleges. (They will still be on the hook for room and board fees if they live on campus, which run about $14,000 a year).

What’s great about this plan is that it reduces or even eliminates the debt burden for students (again, a huge drag on our economy). They say a rising tide lifts all boats, which is what I’m hoping Cuomo’s plan does, creating a better path for college graduates to get high-paying jobs. This is what I’d like to focus on here—high-paying jobs—because irrespective of the cost of an education, good high-salary jobs eliminate or reduce all the other problems.

High-paying jobs are out there, so why aren’t they being filled?

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How to Solve the Return on Investment (ROI) Problem for College Students

On Mar 6, 2017 9:21:40 PM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Higher Education

For the past six months, I have been blogging about some of the problems college students face upon graduation and the underwhelming efforts of colleges and universities to help solve these problems — namely, significant debt as well as a lack of training to compete for careers in our ever-changing economic environment. Along these lines, I came across a NY Times article dated February 18, 2017 entitled: “College Cost Too Much? N.Y.U. Paves Way to Graduate Faster.” The article explains that with the cost of an NYU education running about $66,000 per year (including room, board, tuition and fees), the university faces an “enormous affordability problem” evidenced by complaints from students over the cost of four years of tuition. NYU’s solution? A series of measures to make it easier to graduate in under four years and save money.

The article goes on to say that the governors of Ohio and Wisconsin are also trying to address these issues, but that some experts who study education are questioning this “acceleration effort” because of what students "will miss if they rush through their undergraduate years.” At least the fact that some higher ed institutions are proactively offering ways to reduce more than $60,000 a year in student debt is a good start, and perhaps the trade-off of a shorter college experience for many that must self-finance or borrow is worthwhile.

The future is still in doubt for a lot of today’s graduates

Of course I think that it is great to lower the debt load for these kids, don’t get me wrong…but if colleges don’t give them the skills they’re going to need out in the real world, they often graduate with no hope for a high paying entry level job.

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What Colleges’ #1 Priority Should Be But Isn’t: Training Graduates for the Future

On Jan 24, 2017 2:01:13 PM

/ Andrew Simon

Categories: Higher Education

I have been writing blogs about what liberal arts institutions have failed to do in the new 21st century environment. My focus has been trying to find direct links between job placement, earnings and lifetime learning skills. Unfortunately, there aren’t a lot of those!

Should there be? Perhaps…but let’s discuss the indirect links. And if you believe in indirect links, shouldn’t liberal arts institutions be thinking about this linkage themselves, both formally and informally? Let me give you an example. While I am not always a current reader, I came across the August edition of CB Insights and was particularly struck by the article entitled, “The Future of Dining: 99 Startups Reinventing The Restaurant In One Infographic.”

What is interesting about this article is that it is all about the Internet of Things…which is alive and well and growing. For example, in the restaurant business, some restaurants “are nearly fully automated and require minimal, if any, interaction between employees and customers.” So, what has this got to do with colleges? 

Well, if your higher ed institution is not thinking about this, it should be. And if it is thinking about it, it should be doing something because the IofT will be affecting every college and university’s student population shortly.

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