2016-2017 Net Impact Case Competition Recap
On February 17th and 18th Leeds School of Business hosted the 16th annual Net Impact Case Competition (NICC) in Boulder. Fifteen teams from the United States and Canada offered creative solutions addressing the social, financial, and managerial aspects of implementing a robust mental health change model within an organization.
The case competition’s key sponsor was the National Behavioral Health Innovation Center (NBHIC), whose mission is to implement revolutionary approaches to mental health by connecting thought leaders and resources across the country to find adaptable solutions through collaboration. The case competition was co-sponsored by Genoa Healthcare. Genoa, a QoL Healthcare Company, is the leading pharmacy and telepsychiatry provider serving the behavioral health and addiction treatment community for over 15 years. Genoa’s pharmacy and telepsychiatry services impact more than 500,000 individuals annually. Genoa was thrilled to hear about the topic of this year’s case and eager to get involved. The case was also supported by Kaiser Permanente.
In partnership with Genoa and Kaiser, NBHIC and the Leeds team worked together to craft a challenging business case to get MBAs talking about mental health. A unique aspect of this year’s competition was the inclusion of other disciplines. Each team had at least 2 MBAs, and many included a member from public health, social work, medicine, psychology, or analytics programs.
Twenty business leaders with a wide variety of knowledge participated as judges. Many of these judges volunteer their time at the competition every year. The championship panel of judges included Peggy Hill, the Deputy Director of NBHIC, John Figueroa, the CEO of Genoa Healthcare, Michael Lewis, a Senior Manager of Behavioral Health at Kaiser Permanente, and Mimi McFaul, the Director of Digital Initiatives at NBHIC.
Of the fifteen teams that competed in the finals, five were chose to move on to the championship bracket. The team from the MIT’s Sloan School of Management won the competition and took home $15,000 in prize money. The University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management took 2nd place and won $7,500, and the team from McMaster University’s DeGroote School of Business took 3rd place and $5,000 prize. To top it all off, the Figueroa Family Foundation also gave the runners up, McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management and University of California’s Rady School of Management each a prize of $1,000.
Xavier Roca, of the winning team from MIT/Sloan told the Leeds team: “We felt really supported and guided and encouraged by the organizing team. The judges were so kind and generous in their feedback and recognition of our ideas. And we found the topic so relevant! This was one of the top highlights of my MBA!”
“It was really inspiring to see how engaged and enthusiastic the teams and judges were about this year’s topic. Our case definitely challenged future business leaders to push the status quo and use their skills on such an important social issue. I was thrilled to hear that participants from other disciplines appreciated the opportunity to participate in a business competition and collaborate with MBAs to find innovative solutions for mental health in the workplace,” said Christina Torres, Co-President of the 2017 Net Impact Case Competition.
“It’s really exciting to be part of an event where MBAs come together to offer innovative solutions to such an important problem. I want to thank our entire leadership team, volunteers, and our sponsors for putting together such an inspiring competition,” said Shawn Lindabury, Co-President of the 2017 Net Impact Case Competition.
The Net Impact Case Competition is an event that CU Boulder and the Leeds School of Business is known for, and is run entirely by MBA students. The leadership team for this year included Co-Presidents and 2nd-year MBA students Christina Torres and Shawn Lindabury and Vice-Presidents and 1st-year MBA students Jess Pearson and David Ran.
This year, 25 student volunteers contributed to making the event successful, taking on areas from recruiting judges to running the operations of the event. First year MBA candidates Jenna Scheirman and Colette Crouse wrote this year’s case in collaboration with members of NBHIC, particularly NBHIC’s Research Specialist, Brittanie Pearson. They also worked closely with Dave Payne, Net Impact’s faculty adviser.
Local companies are a great help in making the Net Impact Case Competition successful every year. Sponsors who donated food and drinks to the events include Fiona’s Granola, Noosa Yoghurt, Justin’s, and Oskar Blues.
Every year the Net Impact Case Competition addresses a different social impact issue or sustainability challenge, with past topics including impacting investing, fracking, and coastal resiliency. We’re all excited to see what the case will be about next year as new leaders Jess Pearson and David Ran take the reins in finding a title sponsor and choosing an engaging and challenging topic. Stay tuned! The competition begins ever November. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions.