Cornell: The Prequel: Carpenter is 55 Years Old

Only an hour into the CUES CEO Institute II Program at Cornell and I am PUMPED for what we are going to dive into this week.

Here are a few of the teasers:

  1. The Ice Breaker: Our introduction session started off with an ice breaker that included our group being split into two teams. We were given very limited instruction, only knowing that each of us were to be given a small piece of paper with information pertaining to a problem we needed to solve. While we could read our information, we could not show it to anyone, nor write any information down. My key piece: Carpenter is 55 years old.Such a great exercise on team building, leadership, and strategic problem solving.
  2. Analogical Problem Solving: To best explain this, let me use the example provided by our facilitator Beta Mannix:Suppose you are a doctor faced with a patient who has a malignant tumor in his stomach. It is impossible to operate of the patient, but unless the tumor is destroyed the patient will die. There is a kind of ray that can be used to destroy the tumor. If the rays reach the tumor all at once at a sufficiently high intensity, the tumor will be destroyed. Unfortunately, at this intensity the healthy tissue that the rays pass through on the way to the tumor will also be destroyed. At lower intensities, the rays are harmless to healthy tissue, but they will not affect the tumor, either. What type of procedure might be used to destroy the tumor with the rays and at the same time avoid destroying the healthy tissue?Think about that for a couple minutes. What options are available?Now read this:A small country was ruled from a strong fortress by a dictator. The fortress was situated in the middle of the country, surrounded by farms and villages. Many roads led to the fortress through the countryside. A rebel general vowed to capture the fortress. The general knew that an attack by his entire army would capture the fortress. He gathered his army at the head of one of the roads, ready to launch a full-scale direct attack. However, the general then learned that the dictator had planted mines on each of the roads. The mines were set so that small bodies of men could pass over them safely, since the dictator needed to move his troops and workers to and from the fortress. However, any large force would detonate the mines. It therefore seemed impossible to capture the fortress. However, the general devised a simple plan. He divided his armies into small groups and dispatched each group to the head of a different road. When all was ready, he gave the signal and each group marched down a different road. Each group continued down its road so that the entire army arrived together at the fortress at the same time. In this way, the general captured the fortress and overthrew the dictator. Does that change your thinking? Did you come up with a different solution?
  3. Someone else has solved the problem for youTake a peek at IDEO and I think you will get an idea of where we are going with this.

Based on that information, the bottom line for outcomes this week will be:


Stay tuned!!!!!