Our partnership with the Ivey Business School was established to develop communications tools to support Ivey’s $100 million plus capital campaign to raise money for their new building on the campus of Western University. The theme of the school’s campaign was leadership, which made us ask what leadership meant to Ivey. What became clear through our research process was that the leaders the school trained were focused on the big picture and Ivey provided them with the tools to conquer big issues. These are more socially-conscious business people looking for answers to human problems and doing so with character and skill. This distinguishes the Ivey School from other MBA programs in Ontario and further afield: for instance, Ryerson MBA students are focused more on the effective administration of a business rather than a reconceptualization of business’ role in the world. Each is, consequently, communicated very differently.
Titling the publication The Anatomy of Leadership, we made the big questions—the ones that concern the sustenance and maintenance of our world—the key mechanism by which we communicated Ivey’s story.
Our approach to making the Ivey case was first to establish the playing field and then to introduce the players. We identified the major questions facing business leaders today, communicating the real world context Ivey graduates were entering into. Then we involved Ivey thought leaders, both academic and those alumni leading businesses, to share insights on the big issues. This is how we positioned the Ivey brand in a critical arena. Ivey is a leader. True leaders grapple with big issues, beyond simply managing the bottom line or making a company more competitive.
Ivey Business School, positioning itself as an expert source for the research and education of leadership, maintains a prolific academic and industry publishing enterprise.
In the publication, Leadership on Trial, the economic crisis of 2008 became the central focus of the discussion and analysis of leadership. A high profile project for the School, the design of the book makes a deliberate tie to the simultaneously published annual report, The Anatomy of Leadership.