Case competitions – what’s in it for you?

Often people ask me about why I attend various competitions all around Europe. Well for first, I just find this as an excuse to travel! It often takes me to places I haven’t visited, stirring a lot of excitement and enthusiasm to explore a different culture and community altogether. But apart from that, there are many other reasons why I try to attend such events. And come to think of it, even you should too.

* Knowledge application – Usually such case competitions are organized by big companies. In majority of the cases, they use a business problem existing within the firm as a case to solve for the participating students. This gives you a realistic view of how organizational problems looks like and understand the various forces acting around it. You get to hear from seasoned experts briefing you on the problem at hand and get to ask questions. While you are solving it, you use all your classroom knowledge and apply them to come up with a feasible solution. Thus it’s an amazing opportunity to put your learning to use and see how you can also make a difference.

* Teamwork – Almost all of the case competitions I have been to requires excellent teamwork skills. You will be assigned a random group by the organizer, who would put forward teams with dynamic background and knowledge. This uniform blend boots teamwork because lot of ideas can be put together. Hence, you learn to work in team, develop and polish skills that are needed to motivate people, meet deadlines and produce good results. This is extremely vital in workplaces and especially in multinational companies that have offices in different parts of the globe and requires you to work in an international setting.

* Network – This is one of the major reasons, why I suggest, you should attend case competitions. ‘What is the most effective way to secure a job?’ – Probably a question every soon-to-be graduate asks. Answer is simple – ‘network’! When you apply for these types of competitions, companies run a selection round to see who fits their requirements of a potential employee in the future. Of course it’s just a competition, but here you actually get to meet the senior management teams, the HR people and other stakeholders who are involved. Just as you study their case and solve it, they also study you, see how you work, what are your qualities that stands you apart etc. Win or lose, these contacts are the best things you can take away from any such competitions.

* Boost up your CV – Attending such competitions can add much value your CV. These show the prospective employers that you are willing to go out of your comfort zone and try yourself in unknown waters. Apart from studies, getting involved in such activities also shows that you have good time management and teamwork skills. Moreover, it also shows that you are looking forward to expanding your basic skills and getting to know various companies.

At the end of the day, winning and losing is not the main factor. Of course it’s always nice to win (I won one in Denmark 😀 ) but gaining this unprecedented opportunity to improve yourself and finding opportunities can go a long way to aid in building a career. I attended case competitions in Sweden, Denmark and Germany and learnt a lot from this experience. I highly recommend you should too!

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Image taken from internet

Redwan

A Bangladeshi student who graduated from MSc. Information Systems, Linnaeus University.
Read more about Redwan

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