My team’s experience in IBD thus far has been a roller coaster. Back in January, Alex Montero, Taka Uenishi, Yonghan Cho and myself were all excited to learn that we would be working in Hungary. Over the next 3 months or so, we were making great progress at developing a market entry strategy for a local cardboard furniture manufacturer who was trying to enter the U.S. market. However, two weeks before we were scheduled to leave, we received the unfortunate news that our client sponsor had fallen extremely ill. As a result, the current team could not support us during our stay so our project was abruptly canceled.

However, through the efforts of the program office, we were assigned to a new project in Mongolia. Although we were initially disappointed that we had to be reassigned, our excitement returned as we learned more about our client and our projects.

Once we arrived, our team was segmented into three distinct projects. Taka and I were assigned to help our client, Newcom, understand the feasibility of launching an executive education center here in Ulaanbaatar, the capital of Mongolia.The country is on the cusp of a mining boom that will lead to heavy growth in GDP over the next few years. As a result, Mongolian-based businesses will need to be working to develop the next generation of leaders to manage this growth. Like many of the largest enterprises in the country, Newcom is of the opinion that current training resources are not meeting market needs. As a result, the company is looking to launch a private executive education center where businesses can send their employees to round out their skill set and position themselves for increased responsibilities in the future. In the week or so that we have been here, I believe that we have made already made a measureable impact. We have been working with the team to refine the business model and test the economic feasibility for the venture. When we leave in a week or so, I am confident that we will have provided them with the tools they need to get this business up and running by the end of the year. Although it has been a wild ride, I am glad that we were given the chance to come to Mongolia, and I am confident we will all leave here with fond memories of the IBD experience.

—Jason Lyman

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