CIMBA Newsletter

October 2010
In This Issue
CIMBA Undergraduate
Executive Programs
Al's Book Club
Meet the Faculty

Roy Pettibone

What is your home university? How did you hear of CIMBA, and when did you join with us?
My home university is the University of Iowa. I heard about CIMBA through Gary Gaeth in Iowa, and first taught for CIMBA in the Fall of 2009.

What about the CIMBA philosophy most appeals to you?
I believe that there is great potential in applying the principles of neuroleadership to the future generations of leaders attending the CIMBA programs. Great strides are being made daily in this relatively new field, and CIMBA is at the forefront of this effort. CIMBA is the place to be as this field blossoms; all of its programs provide great opportunities for learning, research, and application.

Could you describe your roles within CIMBA?
I teach in the Undergraduate (accounting and finance courses), MBA (accounting), and Executive Programs (strategy and accounting). I also work with the MBA students on their annual consulting projects.

What has been the most rewarding and memorable aspects of your work with CIMBA?
The most rewarding and memorable aspects of the CIMBA experience are the wonderful people that I have met during my time here. This includes students, staff, faculty, support personnel, locals, and so on. Everyone I have met at CIMBA has only enhanced an already incredible experience. Thanks to everyone involved for the opportunity to "live the dream" while here at CIMBA!

Alumni Updates

Patrick Giradina, CIMBA Class of 2004, married Amy Sands Giardina on October 10th.

Blake Wood, CIMBA Class of 2008, and his wife Amanda are the proud parents of Jameson Wood.


Congratulations newlyweds, and new parents alike!

New job? Moving somewhere new? Getting married? Other life changes? Want to volunteer your profile for the Meet the Alumni section?
Keep your fellow alums in the loop! Send your news items to and they will appear here the following month.
Quick Links
CIMBA Website
Tippie School of Management
CIMBA Alumni AssociationCIMBA Alumni on LinkedIn
Undergraduate Blogs
Contact Us/Feedback
Calendar of Events:
October 2010

Executive Programs
26 Oct.: Presentation of ECIMS in Asolo
30 Oct.: ECIMS Enrollment Deadline
19 Nov.: ECIMS Low Ropes Experience

16 - 17, 23- 24 Oct.: MBA Accounting with Dr. Bruce Johnson
20 Oct.: Team Coaching Session
25-31 Oct.: Fall Break!
3 Nov.: Accounting Exam I
8 - 10 Nov.: MBA Statistics with Dr. Al Ringleb
13, 14, 20, 21 Nov.: MBA Accounting with Dr. Roger Chope
17 Nov.: Statistics Exam II

21 Oct.: Expatriate Panel Discussion
26, 27 Oct.: Career Workshop Series
1 - 4 Nov.: Kepner-Tregoe Certification Series
30 Nov.: Gourmet Dinner 3


Past Issues

A new academic year has begun both on CIMBA's MBA and Undergraduate campuses. New students, many new professors, and, perhaps best of all, many new changes and program developments are all coming together to enhance CIMBA's unique academic environment.
On an undergraduate and graduate level, CIMBA is pushing to further the impact of its leadership development systems. Through a variety of Leadership Competency Workshops, we are finding new ways to explore student learning on both a cognitive and a behavioral level, consistently discovering new ways to confirm CIMBA's abiding adage: that personal, intentional change is the process through which individuals become leaders.

CIMBA has recently also begun a collaboration with Suunto (click here for the Suunto website). Originally designed to train professional athletes, Suunto products are currently being implemented on the MBA campus to show students the ways in which their bodies handle mental and social stress. Through the collection of data through Suunto devices, the new class of CIMBA MBAs has the opportunity to gain a new level of self-awareness in the constant pursuit of driving their own change.

These are some of the first in a series of examples through which CIMBA is continuously differentiating itself from standard leadership curricula. Most recently, for example, CIMBA was selected as being among the top 20 "Rising Star" MBA programs in the world (click here), affirming the notion of constant change and improvement that has made CIMBA recognizable on an international level for so many years.

It's going to be an exciting year at CIMBA--there is much to do, and much to learn. This newsletter is, for many of you, the easiest way to keep in touch with the changes going on with us. Let us hear from you, so that we can as easily track what's going on in your life!
Warm Regards,
The CIMBA Staff

The following article is written by Derek Tellin, a member of CIMBA's MBA Class of 2011. Derek Tellin is a graduate from the University of Iowa with a major in International Studies. He comes from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, where he gained several years of experience in television broadcast news. Derek decided to join the CIMBA family in order to make the jump from employee to leader and is eager to build on his experiences.

Less than a month into the CIMBA experience, just as the class of 2011 has completed their time in Slovenia for the high ropes course and endured the "red zones" of the LIFE Program, many of us find ourselves asking, "Did I really sign up to do this willingly?" All of the opportunities opportunities and innate obstacles that come with living in close quarters with seventeen other people in a foreign country aside, this year's students have overcome many barriers, both as individuals and as a team. We have established friendships, bonded as a team, and created an organized, cheap, and efficient way for eighteen people to eat dinner every single night. Many of us are slowly adjusting to the idea that they can no longer go to a grocery store at 2:00 am for a gallon of milk. We have begun keeping tabs of all of the local Asolo businesses so they know exactly what time on which days they can get gelato from Francesco or a spicy "Calzone CIMBA" from Maria and Saverio's.

The CIMBA MBA Class of 2011 in Slovenia for the High Ropes Course

In addition to the normal trials and tribulations of starting a new school year, this year's batch of CIMBA students must start each morning by strapping on a Suunto heart rate monitor, (to remind them exactly how nervous they get each time Dr. Ringleb steps into a room!). More importantly, this watch allows us to be aware of how our emotions and stressors affect our decision-making and performance abilities. The Suunto watch and heart rate monitor is integrated into the program to help bring out the leader in each of us. With more than two hundred and eighty days left, we eighteen unique individuals are preparing to enjoy every moment Dr. Ringleb has to offer and they are working as hard as we can to make the most of our CIMBA experience.
CIMBA Undergraduate

The following article is written by Lauren Rogers, a Resident Assistant at CIMBA's Undergraduate campus in Paderno del Grappa. Lauren is attending CIMBA through the University of Tennessee, where she is a senior majoring in Agricultural Leadership. On top of her obligations as a Resident Assistant at the undergraduate campus, Lauren has taken on projects with both the CIMBA Undergraduate Newsletter (published at the end of each semester) and CIMBA's LEAP Leadership Development Program.

While sitting in my Intro to Communication Studies class, a thought occurred to me: I can study abroad with my minor! For the past few years, I have wanted to study abroad, however, what can you really do abroad with an Agricultural Leadership major? With my Communication Studies minor, the possibilities opened up. I began researching programs with communications classes in England, Italy, and Australia, my top three places to go. England didn't have what I needed. Australia was just a bit too far. Italy, though, had this amazing program called CIMBA that emphasized leadership in everything I read. After learning more about CIMBA, I knew this was the program for me. It combined both my major and my minor perfectly and offered a lot more than other programs I looked at. For even more leadership opportunities, I applied for the Resident Assistant position and was selected for the Fall 2010 RA team.

I began my interest in leadership through the National FFA Organization, a leadership organization based in agriculture. Although I have been though numerous leadership training programs and served in leadership positions, I was not prepared for CIMBA's LIFE Leadership Development seminar. This program was like nothing else I have experienced. The energy level, passion, and perseverance required to get through LIFE was almost overwhelming. During the first night, I found out that I am not as good as I though at "off the cuff" speeches while under pressure. I was not the expert I thought I was. LIFE forced me to take a better look at myself and figure out what was holding me back. For me, I am a people pleaser, so my barrier to leadership was that I don't want to disappoint anyone. On the second night of LIFE training, I broke through this barrier and made promises to myself and to my team members that I would not let this barrier get in the way of my full leadership potential.

The Graduation of CIMBA Undergraduate LIFE Team 1018

I not only gained a better understanding of myself though LIFE, but I also learned so much about my team mates and peers. When I first came to CIMBA and realized that I was the only agriculture major and the only person who was ever in FFA, I was a bit worried about how the semester would go. After LIFE, though, I am more confident and have more friends!
CIMBA Executive Programs
See you in Udine!
CIMBA will be at the trade show organized by Alig, in Udine, on Saturday afternoon, October 23rd in the Teatro Giovanni da Udine. See you there!
The Executive Certificate in International Management and Strategy
The new edition of the Executive Certificate in International Management and Strategy will begin in November. The program, now in its 9th edition, spans across eight weekends, one per month from November 2010 to June 2011, and finishes with a one-week intensive course in July at the University of Iowa in the United States. The certificate carries with it a expansive management education from a strategic perspective and focuses on providing participants the practical business tools and personal characteristics required to allow them to advance to higher levels of responsibility within their companies -- or to create and build their own businesses.
The enrollment process will close in a few weeks. There are only a few places still available.

For any information please contact
Through our partnership with Libreria Universitaria Online, we offer a scholarship available for the ECIMS program. Click here to learn more.  
In-Company Training & Coaching
Several companies are getting tangible benefits thanks to CIMBA's in-company leadership development training and coaching. If you are interested, give us a call or send us an e-mail and we will show you what your ROI could be.
A-B-C: Al's Book Club 

During the summer, I had an opportunity to catch up on my reading. I found an interesting book I had tossed on my "I will get to it eventually" pile and realized I should have read it much sooner. On its face, the book, Henry L. Thompson's The Stress Effect: Why Smart Leaders Make Dumb Decisions -- And What To Do About It had looked to be yet another book on decision-making. The selection and use of KT here at CIMBA (now, for more than 10 years) has convinced us of the clear advantages of explicated rational process tools and techniques. I have seen a discernible pattern in those "decision-making" books that has led me to conclude they are all converging in the direction of a such an explicated tool or technique like KT as their "solution." Taking a comparative look at KT (along with the improvements and additions we have made by incorporating neuroscience and related research) against the solutions proposed in this seemingly endless stream of "decision-making" books has provided a continuous confirmation of KT's applicability and usefulness. Beyond neuroscience extensions, we have found few, if any, additional insights or advancements in thinking flowing from those "decision-making" books.

However, much to my surprise, I discovered that The Stress Effect is not one of those typical "decision-making" books. Thompson is, by training, an organizational psychologist and, by profession, a leadership consultant. The typical "decision-making" book (the best of those, by the way, is Sydney Finkelstein, Jo Whitehead, and Andrew Campbell's Think Again: Why Good Leaders Make Bad Decisions and How to Keep It from Happening to You) has an all too predictable theme: seemingly at the root of every flawed decision is a leader who has made an error of judgment. The leader's current decision process then fails to reveal the error, and the authors have a solution that is usually a poor imitation of KT or, at best, an application of the very logic behind KT (which Ben Tregoe and Chuck Kepner delivered into this world more than 50 years ago). In his book, Thompson focuses his attention not on the decision-making process but rather on how a leader's emotions can impede effective decision-making. Importantly, while making it clear he understands that everything from informational shortcomings, to inexperience, to inefficient decision making processes can lead to ineffective decision-making, Thompson places his greatest energy on the impact of emotion on a leader's ability to make good decisions. Given that at CIMBA we have already fully embraced KT as our process solution, we have turned our attention to assisting students in understanding emotion and how a failure to regulate emotion can significantly impact performance. Although coming from a slightly different perspective, the book touches upon the essence of our emotion-behavior-cognition-performance "process," making it a good background read for those interested in staying abreast of what is going on at CIMBA.

Let me give you a few illustrations of other similarities and differences. At a crucial juncture in the book Thompson asserts: "Anything that interferes with processing in a brain region, and with communication among the regions, especially when the PFC is involved, will degrade the overall decision-making process." We are in complete alignment with Thompson in this regard, but would go further and state that not only is decision-making thinking impacted but also, importantly, so are our more general abilities to think -- specifically, to think at higher levels and/or be creative. In fact, we have been testing this basic notion in our LIFE programs with consistent statistical results. At another point in the book, Thompson does a very good job of laying out the neuroscience intertwining emotions and decision-making. As CIMBA alums, I want you to read and then generalize his discussion from leadership "decision-making" to leadership "thinking." Like most "decision making" authors, Thompson does not distinguish between "decisions" and "issue resolution" (mixing decision-making issues with situation appraisal, problem avoidance, innovation, and problem solving issues -- all of which involve some shared, but are mostly different and distinct, neuro-networks).

At another juncture, Thompson states: "A primary function of the PFC is to control emotional responses, but such responses can be transmitted so quickly that they sometimes bypass the PFC, and emotional hijacking takes place as a result; a leader goes from having emotions to being had by emotions." In bringing the reader to this thinking, Thompson does a very good job of sorting through the literature on emotional intelligence, again another good reason to take a look at this book. A primary difference between his thinking and ours is that we are very much concerned with individual differences in abilities to "control emotional responses" -- self-regulation, and self-discipline, impulse control. Later in the book, he suggests leaders "practice" a response to such "hijack" situations (we would say work to "hardwire" a more effective response, in order to defeat a currently-wired, ineffective habitual response). In reality, this is consistent with the solution offered by Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz in his book Brain Lock, from which the fundamental thinking driving our coaching implementation theory was taken (by the way, Jeffrey is an active member of our board of advisors, and I encourage you to be on the lookout for his new book It Is Not Your Brain, which should be in stores in early January -- you can be assured we will be reviewing it here). Additionally, we would propose that a leader work hard to enhance self-awareness for the purpose of increasing self-regulation. In this way, the leader is better prepared for a broader array of "stressors" that he or she will almost certainly confront but not necessarily be able to predict, and therefore "practice," in advance.

Let's take a moment and consider this latter notion with specific regard to what is currently taking place at CIMBA. As part of their self-awareness, self-regulation training at CIMBA, the MBA students have been wearing their SUUNTO personal performance measurement instruments, which wirelessly measures heart rate, heart rate variability, respiratory rates, and other neuro- and bio-feedback variables. Being able to watch and observe them become more and more cognizant of their physiology as they confront typical day-to-day MBA activities is making CIMBA a very interesting place to be this fall. And to all of you MBA alums: yes, they do wear the watches during class time with color-coded heart rates for each student projected on the wall. When a student "disappears" mentally to "Tahiti," the professor and the class know it immediately by the color code being projected. As you can well imagine, the personal performance measurement instrument is having interesting impacts on individual and group dynamics. Later this month, they will go through their first emotion elicitation experiences where, in addition to the personal performance instrument, they will also be wired to measure both skin conductance and EEG. Oh, I almost forgot to tell you; they also wore their personal performance measurement instruments during the high-ropes program with the typical heart rate at the top of the pole (you fulltime MBA alums do remember the 30-foot pole, don't you?) being in the 175 range. Every day is a new learning experience as CIMBA students travel the most holistic MBA leadership development learning path on the planet. Be proud!