CIMBA Newsletter
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May 2008

Meet the Faculty

Prof. George Seidel of University of Michigan

Professor George Seidel joins us from the University of Michigan, where he
focuses on legal issues that relate to international business law, negotiation, and dispute resolution. He teaches negotiation and dispute resolution as it relates to new venture development here at CIMBA.

Experience at CIMBA:
5 years

What keeps you coming back?
The enthusiasm and cross-cultural experience of the students.  The inspiring leadership of Al Ringleb and Cristina Turchet.  The kindness and efficiency of Margherita Lago.  The beauty of Asolo.  Italian food and wine.  The chance to make an annual pilgrimage to the grave of the great actress Eleonora Duse, which is located in the St. Anna cemetery. 

What's your best "CIMBA" moment?
  Watching students play the role of Native Americans in a cross-cultural negotiation that takes place on a reservation. 

How has CIMBA affected you? Your teaching?
   CIMBA has provided an opportunity to test negotiation principles and my negotiation exercises in a European setting.

What's diferent about teaching at CIMBA?
The small class size and classroom design are great for the negotiation exercises.  The students have unusual camaraderie and are very welcoming to visitors.  For example, when teaching my negotiation module in April, they invited me to have lunch with them.  There are some great cooks in the current class! 

What's the best thing about CIMBA?
If this were a multiple choice question, I would say "all of the above." 

Anything words for students?
I recognize the danger of translation, but let me try to give parting words in Italian: 
"Sono grato per l'opportunitą per lavorare con voi. I migliori auguri per il successo nelle sue carriere e nei suoi viveri personali."

Grazie Mille!

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If you are a CIMBA Undergraduate, MBA or Executive Programs Alumnus, we want to keep in touch with you. The CIMBA Alumni Network gives you a way to connect with other graduates from the different areas of CIMBA.
Join the CIMBA Alumni Network by clicking on this link: CIMBA Alumni Network


We are in the recruiting process for international students. The deadline for the application submission is May 30. If you know of a bright, talented young man or woman eager to get an international MBA degree, with emphasis on leadership and consulting, please tell him/her to contact us for more information at

Alumni Updates
New job? New move? Getting married? Keep your fellow alums in the loop! Send your news items to and your item will appear here next month.

Undergrad (by class year and semester)
Fall 2002 - Heidi McElroy and Andy Sandate, who met at CIMBA, are engaged.

MBA (by class year)
1992 - Laura Harris moved from The Walt Disney Company and is now Vice President Finance - Studio Operations at Paramount

1994 -
Gino Conte is now the Responsabile Mercati Retail/Middle Market Insurance Development, Gruppo Generali.

2004 - Andy Sandate and Heidi McElroy, who met at CIMBA, are

2007 - Patrick Drake is living in St. Louis as a project coordinator for Talisen Technologies.


Summer is finally here! It's a time of change and flux here at CIMBA as we say goodbye to the spring semester students and professors and welcome new groups of undergraduate and MBA summer session students.

There's a change in this monthly newsletter as well - please visit our new "Alumni Updates" column on the lower left of this mailing. Send your news to, and keep your CIMBA friends in the loop!

It's a bustling pace here at CIMBA - visit the campus features to catch up on each group's activities.

Have a wonderful day!

Six Sigma Continues
A Six Sigma group works in the CIMBA library.
MBA groups are wrapping up their final analyses on the Six Sigma project they have been working on since the start of the year.
Groups are working  in purchasing, production and other areas to help local  companies make their processes lean.

Luca Girotto and Mesut Sakal work to find a compromise in negotiation.
The MBA part-time and full-time students spent a weekend with Professor George Seidel (featured in the Meet the Faculty article to the left) learning and building their skills in the fine art of negotiation.

The weather cooperated to give a nice backdrop to simulations of real negotiations - at right, Mesut Sakal and Luca Girotto play the parts of a buyer and a seller negotiating price, delivery and other basic contract points in a role play.

CIMBA Undergraduate
Departures and Arrivals
Student of the Spring 2008 semeter say goodbye.
CIMBA undergraduate students said goodbye and shared some tears as the spring semester came to a close.
The campus and staff will welcome 250 undergraduates for the summer session starting May 19 along with 16 professors and their families.
Robert Tudisco, one of the program coordinators at CIMBA'sRobert Tudisco undergraduate campus, has completed his MBA studies in Asolo and will go to the University of Kansas campus in Lawrence, Kansas, to finish his final course and graduate.
After graduation, he plans to return to Oklahoma to spend time with family and make up some of the time this two year adventure has taken. On the job front, Robert  is leaning toward returning to the international relations realm where he can affect the areas of the world that need assistance.
He say he'll miss the people at CIMBA: the students, the staff and the professors.
"My favorite moments here at CIMBA are those times when I get an e-mail, a note or a letter from a CIMBA student that expresses how their experience here helped them get the jobs that they wanted, make the right decision in their lives or gave them an important life lesson that still resonates in their lives," he said. "These moments make all the hard  work the last two years more than worth it."
The administration, staff and faculty would like to thank him for all of his hard work and support in the past two years, and wish him the best of luck in whatever comes next!
CIMBA Executive Programs
Participants in CIMBA's Executive Certificate in Leadership Development had a session of teambuilding and problem solving in a one-day workshop and outdoor training on the low ropes course at the Paderno del Grappa campus. The course will continue with courses on team dynamics and teamwork skills.

CIMBA Executive is recruiting for the Certificate in International Management and Strategy, which will begin in October this year and end in July 2009. Contact Katiuscia Baggio at for more information about the program.
CIMBA Calendar - April 2008
May 19 - Summer session student arrival
May 22, 27 - Concert on Campus
May 26 - European seminar
May 29, 31 - Asolo Song festival

May 3,4 - New Venture Development with Prof. Brent Mainprize.
May 10,11 - MIS with Prof. Michael Grieves.
May 18 - Summer Session begins, Annual CIMBA BBQ
May 24 - Low Ropes course for part-time, first-year students

May 6 - Presentation, "Certificate in Business Communication," CIMBA, Asolo. 6:00pm - 7:00pm
May 7 - 1 day Workshop - Outdoor Training, "Low Rope Course" - TeamBuilding, CIMBA, Undergraduate Campus, Paderno del Grappa. 9:30am - 5:00pm
May 10 - Executive Certificate in Leadership Development 3rd Edition, "Leading Team Dynamics," 9:30am - 5:00pm
May 17 - Executive Certificate in Leadership Development 3rd Edition, "Focus, Accountability and Teamwork," 9:30am-5:00pm
May 29 - Presentation, "Certificate in International Management," CIMBA, Asolo. 6:00pm - 7:00pm
A-B-C: Al's Book Club
booksThe Neuroscience of Fair Play: Why We (Usually) Follow the Golden Rule by Donald W. Pfaff

The CIMBA Leadership Development System has the development of a student's basic beliefs as one of its cornerstones. Our neuroscience rationale in working on basic beliefs is to take those deeply embedded, hardwired beliefs every individual possesses and make those beliefs visible by encouraging students to actively think and articulate them to create an image of those beliefs in the student's prefrontal cortex. There, the student will then be able to both access them more quickly in the decision-making process and to make them more readily transparent to others.
   As a reference, we encourage students to think about the person to whom they go when they have a difficult decision to make: "Just at that moment when you are about to knock on the door of that person, you realize you already know their answer because that person has made their basic beliefs transparent or visible to you." We feel this trait is fundamental to successful management and leadership.The Neuroscience of Fair Play: Why We (Usually) Follow the Golden Rule
   One of the questions that interests us is the extent of commonality of certain core beliefs among individuals or least the application of those beliefs in social environments. A number of interesting books have looked into this question. One that I have found particularly intriguing is by Donald W. Pfaff, head of the Laboratory of Neurobiology and Behavior at Rockefeller University, The Neuroscience of Fair Play: Why We (Usually) Follow the Golden Rule (Dana Press, 2007). Dr. Pfaff argues that the brain does not have a signaling circuit dedicated to ethics or basic beliefs. Rather, we make use of brain circuits that are already there to disable self preference driven by our survival instinct.
   The simple mechanism for the application of an individual's basic beliefs in social environments, he says, is the brain's tendency in social environments to confuse "self" and "other." This empathy -whose neural mechanism Pfaff explains in great detail  - causes us to consider an action toward another as if it were happening to us, prompting us to treat others as we wish to be treated ourselves.
   For those of you who have followed this corner closely, you will see in that theory the nexus to "mirror neurons," a concept we have discussed before (Look for the PBS FOCUS video on the topic on the Internet). In developing his theory, Dr. Pfaff goes into great detail about how neurobiology and neurochemistry interact to help shape behavior consistent with this shared basic belief.