T-Mobile’s John Legere on Brand, Leadership, and the Wireless Industry
John Legere videoconferenced in to an Oregon MBA marketing course. MBA students themselves reached out on social media to invite Legere, who agreed to speak to the class less than 24 hours later. Legere shared insights about how T-Mobile approaches branding and the importance of authenticity in marketing. He also bestowed advice on leadership, detailing how he seeks to “cut through all the noise” to ensure frontline employees in stores and customer support (people he says are “the voice to the company”) have direct access to him as CEO. Legere also, of course, got in a few characteristic gibes at T-Mobile’s competitors in the wireless industry, stating that “family plans are trickery.”
Steve Ellis from Wells Fargo on Online, Mobile, and Social Banking
Steve Ellis, MBA ’87, spoke with a group of Oregon MBA students from the Center of Sustainable Business Practices and the Finance and Securities Analysis Center. In a wide-ranging talk, Ellis described his journey from “quant jock” to executive vice president and head of the wholesale services group at Wells Fargo. He also detailed how he pushed the bank to begin offering online and mobile business-to-business banking services.
Expert Joel Slemrod on Weird Taxes
The University of Oregon Tax Policy Research Group presented a lecture by University of Michigan’s Joel Slemrod. Titled “Taxing Beards and Breasts, Wigs, and Windows: Weird Taxes of the Past and their Lessons for Tax Policy Today,” Slemrod examined quirky taxes of the past—such as an English tax on windows, a Russian tax on beards, and an Indian tax on breasts—and drew out their lessons for current tax policy. The UO Tax Policy Research Group is composed of faculty from the UO School of Law, UO Department of Economics, and the Lundquist College of Business.
Nike’s Tom Kelley on Brand Management
Tom Kelley, senior director of North American brand management at Nike Brand Jordan, brought his 20 years of marketing experience to the Lundquist College last month. Kelley previously led Nike’s marketing efforts in sustainable business and was the driver behind its Nike Better World marketing. Kelley has worked at Nike on both the marketing side and agency side (at Wieden+Kennedy) and has been a part of driving some of the brand’s most impactful and innovative marketing programs for Livestrong, Athletic Training, Tennis, Football, Golf, and Brand Jordan.
Dave Chen on Impact Investing
Dave Chen, CEO, Equilibrium Capital Group took on the topic of “The Past, Present, and Future of Impact Investing.” Equilibrium is a San Francisco-based global asset management platform built on a belief in socially responsible investing. Chen highlighted how Equilibrium sees and values investment opportunities in an array of resources from wastewater to grass-fed cattle and sheep.
Tofurky’s Seth Tibbott on Sustainability
Inspired by the book Diet for a Small Planet, Tibbot took $2,500 of his own money and founded Tofurky in Forest Grove, Oregon in 1980. He shared with students some of the lessons learned in business and life during his journey turning soy into arguably the most successful meat substitute in the nation.