The Pros and Not-So-Cons of Case Competitions

Photo of WinstonI was pulled back and forth when deciding whether I felt I should enter the case competition with a group of friends…“It would be fun”…“But it would take too much time”… “I could meet new leaders in industry”… “But what if we lose”.

So, naturally, I weighed the outcomes with a pros and cons list.

I began by outlining the pros. First, I would get to spend time with my friends, working on a project we all find interesting. Additionally, I would get to put to use and showcase the skills and insight I have been developing through my years in AFM. Finally, this competition (like many others) included a networking-event portion, and even boasted prize money for the top submissions.

Next, I summarized what I had initially expected the cons to be. Among this list included the time commitment, presenting in front of strangers, not being ready, and the potential of losing and feeling as if it was all for nothing. But once I changed my perspective, I realized that none of these were really cons. I would improve my time management skills, further develop an important skill, and step out of my comfort zone.

So, as you may have expected, the outcome was much better than I could have expected. Our group ended up winning the competition and had a great time. It ended up far less of a commitment than expected and provided insight into the world of the accounting and finance ahead of us, and the endless opportunities.

Now, looking back, doing the case competition should have been an easy decision, and I would highly recommend it. What’s the worst-case scenario? You lose. In that case, you’ve still gained an invaluable learning experience, bolstered your presentation skills, received highly credible feedback from industry experts, expanded your network, and added a great eye-catcher for your resume and conversation piece in interviews.

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