Search This Blog

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Travis Darrow attends, Haas Alumni Network Shanghai with the Berkeley Shanghai Club

Big Names, Big Turnout

This month, I was lucky to be in town for some financial services and communications and media meetings and able to attend a great event in Shanghai with many Haas and Cal alumni and friends.

80 some attendees gathered at Haas alum Min Yoo’s famous Hong Kong and Shanghai Billards Club, Racks in Xintiandi which included the following special guests:

· Dean Rich Lyons, Haas School of Business, University of California Berkeley

· Professor Frank Schultz, Haas Economic Analysis and Policy Group

· Professor Paul Tiffany, Haas Business and Public Policy Group

· Jeanne HuangLi, Senior Development Director, Haas School of Business

· Bernie Murphy and Freeman Ding, Haas School of Business new admits

· 20 current students from Haas in China with Professor Schultz for a study tour

· Travis Darrow, Berkeley Club of Hong Kong : )

Haas Prof Shares Performance Insights

Despite the challenging task of speaking in a lively bar environment Haas Professor Schultz gave an excellent and actionable talk on "Deliberate Practice: Achieving Outstanding Performance for Individuals and Organizations."

Dr. Schultz’ research interests focus on the strategic decision making of CEOs and senior executives, the methods of balancing stakeholder interests and the manner in which the mental models of executives influence the evolution of firms and industries. Deliberate Practice is an emerging concept that strives to illuminate the secret ingredients of outstanding performance -- across all areas of life. As successful regional sales manager, basketball player and Berkeley Club of Hong Kong community leader I’ve always been focused on constant improvement and innovation so I definitely look forward to his book on the subject.

Dean Rich Lyons, inspired us in his high level talk about things going on at the Haas School these days and it’s strategic focus on Asia. In outlining some of these Haas values I found they also really resonate with many Asian cultural and business values.

· Being part of a community and valuing diversity

· Adding value in team-based, collaborative ways

· Managing ambiguity and uncertainty (which is so common in the fast moving China market)

· and perhaps most important confidence without attitude

He closed with reaffirming the School’s commitment and focus on Asia and that while the term "American Century" was coined at the end of World War II by Time magazine founder Henry Booth-Luce, the current and future world we live will be strongly influenced by Asia.

ShangKong -- A New Partnership Strategy?

This also brings me to the question of this new concept of, ShangKong (Shanghai – Hong Kong), and what might it mean for an Asia strategy? ShangKong is this idea of an emerging new financial center of Asia, possibly the world: a partnership of Shanghai and Hong Kong. Part of this arose after China’s State Council announced on 25 March a decision to speed up Shanghai as an International Financial Center by 2020. Jeffrey Garten, former of the Clinton administration wrote about this ShangKong concept in the Financial Times, just last month. In his view enhanced ties between the two cities are underway, and combined with China's creditor status, the weakness of the dollar and other factors, we have the rise of ShangKong as a new world financial center. Of course it begs the question if Shanghai can be an “IFC” without full convertibility of currency and a more transparency regime. While Shanghai’s stock market PE ratios are high and there is liquidity, Hong Kong still leads on the big IPOs now and in the past like Bank of China, CITIC, and China Pacific Insurance of which I had a chance to work on, but the Shanghai Stock market is one of the best performing in the world in 2009.

From a Haas Berkeley Shanghai and Berkeley Club of Hong Kong perspective we are thinking about this trend. I connected with new leaders Justin and Rong, and reconnected with Ann and Louisa (who I had even worked with on the Haas Asia Business Conference when she was co-chair back in 2002!). So expect to hear more from us and our ShangKong connection in the future.

Congratulations to the HAN-Shanghai Organizing Committee: Ann, Justin, Rong, Louisa, Haibin, Sharon, and Zhaohui.

Thanks again to Dean Rich Lyons, Professor Frank Schultz, Professor Paul Tiffany, Jeanne HuangLi, Bernie Murphy and Freeman Ding for their special attendance you continue to inspire and support us so much.

Here’s to more ShangKong events in the future.

Best regards and go bears!

Travis Darrow

Berkeley Club of Hong Kong

Annual Berkeley of Hong Kong Scholarship Ball 2009

posted by Travis Darrow