Issue: 4Spring 2011

Welcome to the spring issue of The IPFW Corporate Advantage, a quarterly newsletter for and about clients and partners of the Corporate Training program at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW).  In this issue, we feature Jim Falkiner's unique perspective on economic growth through entrepreneurship; the final installment of Bob Abel's three-part series on critical thinking; and an insightful article based on an interview with IPFW alumnus Tobias "Toby" Buck, the chairman, president and CEO of Paragon Medical, Inc.  We hope you find helpful information in this newsletter as you explore new ways to use Corporate Training to your advantage.  We welcome suggestions for future subject matter; please click here to submit them for consideration.

Coming soon -- new leadership development program for "Managers of Managers": The IPFW Applied Leadership Series.  To learn more, email us.

IPFW Corporate Training is affiliated with the Division of Continuing Studies, and its offerings of cost-effective, valuable programs in Corporate Training, as well as in Professional Development and Personal Enrichment.  View the IPFW Continuing Studies Catalog at, or request a copy by calling 260-399-1675.  If the course you need is not listed, ask about unique, company-specific courses that can be tailored to your needs.

--Gary Schott, Director of Entrepreneurship & Corporate Training, IPFW Division of Continuing Studies

260-399-1675 or

PerformanceCritical Thinking: Making a Difference
By Bob Abel, IPFW Faculty

"Thinking is skilled work. It is not true that we are naturally endowed with the ability to think clearly and logically - without learning how, or without practicing."  --Alfred Mander, Author

As Mander suggests -- and as we have previously explored here - thinking takes discipline, practice and curiosity.  In Bob Abel's final installment of his three-part series on critical thinking, we will explore a number of concepts that need to be understood and that are fundamental to the continuous development of critical thinking and problem solving.  Here Abel, who is on the faculty of the Organizational Leadership and Supervision Division of Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (, concludes that critical thinking can be a meaningful differentiator for establishing a competitive advantage through any organization's human resources.   Read more.

falkinerToday's Organizations Need their Own Entrepreneurs
By Jim Falkiner, Manchester College's Mark E. Johnson Professor of Entrepreneurship

Federal, state and local government officials tell us that economic growth comes from entrepreneurship, which is interpreted by many as meaning we need more business start-ups.  However, in this article, Jim Falkiner, Manchester College's Mark E. Johnson Professor of Entrepreneurship, suggests that this interpretation may miss the mark, asserting that most small business start-ups are primarily unproductive and wasteful.  He says that if we want to encourage more business start-ups as public policy, then we need better business start-ups.  But he questions if that is possible and if it is the best use of public funds.  "Might there be an effective, low-cost and renewable source of growth just beneath our gaze?" he asks, referring to today's existing businesses that he feels may be a better source of economic  growth.                         

Read the entire article.

AlumniInsightsIPFW Alumni Insights

This series features alumni of Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) as they share their insight on a variety of topics related to business and organizational growth.  We thank the IPFW Alumni Association for helping us identify community leaders for this column.


Business is All About Relationships 

By Mary Popovich for Corporate Advantage

Editor's Note:  The following article is based on an interview with IPFW alumnus Tobias "Toby" Buck, the Chairman, President and CEO of Pierceton-based Paragon Medical, Inc., a Tier 1, turnkey supplier of medical instrument cases and trays, surgical instrumentation, and implantable components for the medical device  industry on a global basis. 
He is a 1984 and 1986 graduate of Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) with a bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering Technology and a companion degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology.  His graduate work is from the Harvard Executive Development Curriculum, and he is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Birthing of Giants three- year certificate program.  He serves on multiple boards of both public and private institutions.

 "At Paragon Medical, business is all about relationships, not transactions.  It's about developing long-term, strategic partnerships.  It's about being responsive and treating people right."  That's the business approach of Paragon Medical, Inc., based on the philosophy of its Chairman, President and CEO, Tobias "Toby" Buck.

Read more.
AboutUsAbout IPFW Corporate Advantage
Providing Corporate Advantages Through Tailored Training
Gary SchottIn need of training to elevate your company to the next level of excellence or teach your employees specific skills needed for future growth expectations?  IPFW's Corporate Training specializes in providing your company with a competitive advantage through training specifically tailored to your needs.  Unlike other "cookie-cutter" or "one-for-all" training programs that attempt to fit your needs into their existing courses, we conduct a thorough needs analysis and custom-design a program specifically for you.  We provide training at your site or ours, carefully choose the right instructor from our vast network of community experts, and customize the training manual and hands-on instruction for your unique needs.  What's more, we can schedule the training on your timeline, when it's least likely to impact operational and production goals.  Learn more about IPFW's Corporate Training and the many training opportunities, or contact Gary Schott at 260-399-1675 or via e-mail at
In This Issue

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Corporate Training


Advanced Manufacturing Network 

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IPFW would like to thank the following companies for choosing us as a corporate training partner since 2009.


Allen County Public Library

AutoForm Tool 


Fort Wayne Metals

Fort Wayne-Allen County Airport Authority

Indiana Physical Therapy 



Kraft Foods

LD Commodities

Lincoln Financial Group 

Maple Leaf Farms


Paragon Medical



Summit Brands

Superior Essex

Symmetry Medical

Trelleborg Sealing Solutions


Wieland Designs


Look for features on our customers in future issues