Department of

Business Management

Life with meaning.

Prof. Susan Vowels, Dept. ChairProf. Susan Vowels, Dept. Chair

That’s the literal translation of 生意 (sheng-yi), the Chinese word for business.

And that’s our approach to teaching business management as a liberal art.

We engage students. You’ll share ideas with classmates, work closely with expert faculty, and get your hands on real-world tools like SAP (all our majors learn how to use it). You can invest a half million dollars in socially responsible businesses in the Brown Advisory Student-Managed Investment Fund. And you can learn how to build your own business from the ground up. 

It’s your dream, and we want you to dream big. Pictured below (click the photo for names) are our 2018 graduates at our first annual Business Management Senior Capstone Experience Poster Exhibition… all of these students reached the finish line and have done amazing things while attending Washington College. Will you be next to follow in their footsteps?

2018 BUS Graduates at the Senior Capstone Experience Poster Exhibition (April 2018). Front row (left to right): Melchol Fantaye, Qin Chen, Samson Ramasamy, Ashley Waldman, Whit Schweizer, Eric Antich. Second row (l to r): Alexandra Green, Sarah Bentley, A. Elaina DiPrimio, Hiyab Gebretensay, Melissa Sue Lopez Neely, Tyler Powers, Austin Hepburn, Chris Antich, Ellie Pitzer. Third row (l to r): Sarah Wieder, Chalisa Singh, Kerri Walsh, Brenna Kacar, Patrick McManus, Lillian King, Zhehao Hou, Jacob Hathaway, Conner Cotting, Evan Laking. Fourth row (l to r): Zach Domenech, Finny Dorsch, Gabby Winsky, Shreyas Suresh, Keri Edmonds, Pete Jacobs, Tim Hickey, Monica Linnell, Joe Lozupone, Josh Knox, Cameron Gilson. Fifth row (l to r): Michael DeMaio, Michael Luckert, Jiahong Xu, Bowen Liu, Prateek Kejriwal, Michael Bloom, Danny Redmond, Hayden Ford, Autumn Spence, Kat Moore, Luke Weaver, Justin Panepinto, John Niswander. Back row (l to r): Peter Ciaccio, Clay Smith, Joey Shelton, Evan Hirschbaum, Matt Tancredi, Peter Mikulus, Nick Popolizio, Ryan Donnelly, Sean Weiss, Brian Kasey. Not pictured: Elizabeth Kearney, Madison Long.

Our grads Global business BUS classroom, Spring 2011 In the classroom

Student quick links

Quick links for students

 


9000

What we're reading

  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p> Susan Cain, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Quiet-Power-Introverts-World-Talking/dp/0307352153/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1361812136&sr=1-1" target="_blank"><em>Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking</em></a> (Broadway, 2013).</p><p> In this celebrated best-seller, Cain takes a look at the undervalued introvert, and what value ‘quiet’ individuals provide to organizations. “<em>Quiet</em>,” according to a review in <em>Fortune</em>, <em>“</em>should interest anyone who cares about how people think, work, and get along, or wonders why the guy in the next cubicle acts that way. It should be required reading for introverts (or their parents) who could use a boost to their self-esteem.”</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/The-Experience-Economy-Theater-Business/dp/0875848192"><img width="210" height="300" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/210/height/300/33978_experience-economy.rev.1454379076.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image33978 lw_align_left" data-max-w="210" data-max-h="300"/></a></em></p><p> B. Joseph Pine II and James H. Gilmore, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/The-Experience-Economy-Theater-Business/dp/0875848192">The Experience Economy: Work Is Theater & Every Business a Stage</a> (Harvard Business School Press, 1999).</p><p> Terry Scout: Pine and Gilmore’s main point in this classic book is that people want experiences rather than goods and services.  Companies excel by providing compelling experiences for customers.  Apple Stores with the genius bar are an experience.  (They really are. I love to go to an Apple Store.) </p><p><em>Required for BUS 202 Marketing, 2013-14.</em></p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="120" height="192" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/120/height/192/15072_jobs3.rev.1454361632.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image15072 lw_align_left" data-max-w="120" data-max-h="192"/>Walter Isaacson, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Steve-Jobs-Walter-Isaacson/dp/1451648537/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1351473756&sr=1-1&keywords=steve+jobs" target="_blank">Steve Jobs</a></em> (Simon and Schuster, 2011).</p><p> Isaacson (best-selling author of biographies of Henry Kissinger, Benjamin Franklin, and Albert Einstein), in his exhaustively researched biography, paints a vivid picture of the complex, difficult genius who co-founded Apple and revolutionized how the world uses computers, listens to music, and more.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="133" height="199" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/133/height/199/42535_brynjolfsson-book.rev.1454387389.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image42535 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/133/height/199/42535_brynjolfsson-book.rev.1454387389.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/12/width/133/height/199/42535_brynjolfsson-book.rev.1454387389.jpg 3x" data-max-w="1001" data-max-h="1500"/>Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Race-Against-Machine-Accelerating-Productivity/dp/0984725113/ref=tmm_pap_title_0">Race Against the Machine: How the Digital Revolution is Accelerating Innovation, Driving Productivity, and Irreversibly Transforming Employment and the Economy</a></em> (Digital Frontier Press, 2012) </p><p> Brynjolffson and McAfee, professors at MIT’s Sloan School of Management, argue that the pace of technological innovation is increasing, and explore the challenges this poses to the future of jobs and the economy. </p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="130" height="196" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/130/height/196/42533_piketty.rev.1454387389.jpeg" class="lw_image lw_image42533 lw_align_left" data-max-w="230" data-max-h="346"/>Thomas Piketty, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Capital-Twenty-First-Century-Thomas-Piketty/dp/067443000X"><em>Capital in the Twenty-First Century</em></a> (Belknap, 2014).</p><p> In this best-selling work, French economist Thomas Piketty argues that the 21st century is seeing a return to ‘patrimonial capitalism,’ the concentration of wealth, income, and power in the hands of a small group of super-wealthy individuals and families.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="161" height="209" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/161/height/209/20539_turner-book.rev.1454365253.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image20539 lw_align_left" data-max-w="161" data-max-h="209"/>Adair Turner, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Economics-After-Crisis-Objectives-Lectures/dp/026201744X/ref=pd_sim_b_11" target="_blank">Economics After the Crisis</a></em> (MIT Press, 2012).</p><p> The financial crisis of 2008 continues to roil the global economy. Turner, Britain’s chief financial regulator, argues that what is needed to restore sustained growth is a rethinking of the basic premises of economics and financial regulation.</p><p> For the last generation, Turner says, economic policymaking has been driven by the so-called Washington Consensus: that markets are efficient, that economic actors are rational in pursuit of their own self-interest, and that inequality is an inescapable consequence of the necessary pursuit of economic growth.</p><p> These simplifying assumptions certainly make for elegant mathematical models. But Turner argues that they simply don’t do a good job mapping the real world.</p><p> What are the consequences when the assumptions and the real world diverge?  And what should we do now to rebuild the global economy? Turner’s book will inspire hard thinking about these big questions.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="108" height="167" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/108/height/167/15840_startupnation.rev.1454361936.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image15840 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/108/height/167/15840_startupnation.rev.1454361936.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/12/width/108/height/167/15840_startupnation.rev.1454361936.jpg 3x" data-max-w="374" data-max-h="577"/>Dan Senor and Saul Singer, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Start-up-Nation-Israels-Economic-ebook/dp/B004QZ9P6K/ref=tmm_kin_title_0" target="_blank">Startup Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle</a></em> (12, 2009).</p><p> Israel, a nation of just 7 million people, has more startup companies than China, India, or Japan, and is a global magnet for venture capital investment, with more than twice as much venture capital per person than the United States, and 30 times more than Europe.</p><p> Senor and Singer explore the intellectual traditions, government policies, and people behind Israel’s remarkable economic success. Entrepreneurialism, the authors suggest, is far more than a policy or a mindset–it is a culture, as well.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><br/><img width="120" height="154" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/120/height/154/15562_coso-cover.rev.1454361829.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image15562 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/120/height/154/15562_coso-cover.rev.1454361829.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/12/width/120/height/154/15562_coso-cover.rev.1454361829.jpg 3x" data-max-w="660" data-max-h="847"/>Mark Beasley et al., <a href="http://www.coso.org/documents/COSOFRAUDSTUDY2010_001.pdf" target="_blank">“Fraudulent Financial Reporting 1998-2007: An Analysis of U.S. Public Companies.”</a> The study, commissioned by leading American accounting organizations, including the American Accounting Association, documents more than 300 cases of accounting fraud in American business during a decade that saw many high-profile instances of malfeasance, with a total misappropriation of more than $100 billion.</p><p> Senior leaders, according to the study, play a critical role in enabling fraud: 89% of CEOs and/or CFOs were named by the SEC in fraud cases it investigated.</p><p> The study concludes that the  long-term impact of accounting and reporting fraud was strongly negative, with companies committing fraud facing higher-than-average risks of bankruptcy, delisting, or asset sales.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="120" height="177" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/120/height/177/15166_strategic-capitalism.rev.1454361682.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image15166 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/120/height/177/15166_strategic-capitalism.rev.1454361682.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/12/width/120/height/177/15166_strategic-capitalism.rev.1454361682.jpg 3x" data-max-w="536" data-max-h="788"/>Richard D’Aveni, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Strategic-Capitalism-Economic-Strategy-Capitalist/dp/0071781161/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1351534988&sr=1-1&keywords=strategic+capitalism" target="_blank">Strategic Capitalism: The New Economic Strategy for Winning the Capitalist Cold War</a></em> (McGraw Hill, 2012).</p><p> Western economists and policymakers have long favored a <em>laissez-faire</em> approach to capitalism and the market.</p><p> But D’Aveni, a strategy professor at Dartmouth’s Tuck Business School, argues that in today’s global economy this traditional hands-off view is failing. Unless Western governments accept a more active role, D’Aveni says, they will continue to lose out to the Chinese model.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p> Gerald Posner, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Gods-Bankers-History-Money-Vatican/dp/1416576576?ie=UTF8&qid=&ref_=tmm_hrd_swatch_0&sr=" target="_blank">God’s Bankers: A History of Money and Power at the Vatican</a> (Simon & Schuster, 2015).</p><p><img width="140" height="211" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/140/height/211/62228_godsbankers.rev.1463670349.gif" class="lw_image lw_image62228 lw_align_left" data-max-w="140" data-max-h="211"/>Noted investigative journalist Gerald Posner explores the complex and Byzantine financial workings of the Roman Catholic Church over the past two centuries. “A fast-paced read that brings history alive on every page” (Booklist).</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Likeable-Social-Media-Customers-Irresistible/dp/0071762345/ref=bxgy_cc_b_img_a" target="_blank"><img width="150" height="225" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/150/height/225/15549_likeable_social_media.rev.1454361819.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image15549 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/150/height/225/15549_likeable_social_media.rev.1454361819.jpg 2x" data-max-w="318" data-max-h="475"/></a> Dave Kerpen, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Likeable-Social-Media-Customers-Irresistible/dp/0071762345/ref=bxgy_cc_b_img_a" target="_blank">Likeable Social Media: How to Delight Your Customers, Create an Irresistible Brand, and Be Generally Amazing on Facebook (And Other Social Networks)</a></em> (McGraw-Hill, 2011).</p><p> “A friend’s recommendation,” Kerpen says, “is more powerful than any advertisement.”</p><p> Social media are transforming how businesses communicate and connect with customers, and how people learn about products and services.</p><p> Facebook, Twitter, blogs, and other social media sites have brought in a new era of informal, rapid-fire interaction–and they’ve also brought waves of new data that companies can analyze to learn more abou their customers’ likes and dislikes.</p><p> In this best-selling book, Kerpen, co-founder and CEO of Likeable Media, provides a fast-paced, easy-to-follow guide to the remarkable world of social media marketing.</p><p>  </p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="110" height="173" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/110/height/173/42586_sutton-and-rao.rev.1454387441.jpeg" class="lw_image lw_image42586 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/110/height/173/42586_sutton-and-rao.rev.1454387441.jpeg 2x" data-max-w="220" data-max-h="346"/>Sutton and Rao, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Scaling-Up-Excellence-Getting-Settling/dp/0385347022">Scaling Up Excellence: Getting to More Without Settling for Less</a></em> (Crown Business, 2014).</p><p> Stanford professors Sutton and Rao explore how organizations can take good ideas practices—“pockets of exemplary performance”—and ‘scale’ them: expand their reach across the entire organization. Based on extensive research from many different industries, Sutton and Rao present a concise, clear framework for “spreading excellence” within a company.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p> Gretchen Morgenson and Joshua Rosner, <a href="http://www.amazon.com/Reckless-Endangerment-Outsized-Corruption-Armageddon/dp/B0085RZF5K/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1352327596&sr=1-1&keywords=reckless+endangerment"><em>Reckless Endangerment</em><em>: How Outsized Ambition, Greed, and Corruption Led to Economic Armageddon</em> </a>(Times Books/Henry Holt, 2011).</p><p><img width="120" height="181" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/120/height/181/15829_morgenson-book.rev.1454361933.jpeg" class="lw_image lw_image15829 lw_align_left" data-max-w="183" data-max-h="276"/>A searing exposé of the financial collapse in America in the 2000s, a collapse that has had far-reaching consequences and has been likened to a second Great Depression.</p><p> Pulitzer-Prize-winning journal Morgenson and her co-author trace the roots of the collapse to an unhealthy, uncontrolled partnership between private-sector banks, mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and politicians going back to the 1990s. They paint a vivid story of how Fannie and Freddie, eager to guard their privileged position of being backed by the government, aggressively resisted Congressional oversight while showering money on politicians to win favorable treatment.</p><p> The authors reveal the workings of the revolving door between Washington and Wall Street, and note that in the years since the collapse, no individual has been held accountable for the ruin and suffering. It’s a powerful, astonishing story of immensely powerful individuals using their connections and positions to enrich themselves, while shielding themselves from the consequences of their mistakes.</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="125" height="174" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/125/height/174/15828_tiger-mother-comp.rev.1454361933.jpg" class="lw_image lw_image15828 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/125/height/174/15828_tiger-mother-comp.rev.1454361933.jpg 2x, /live/image/scale/3x/gid/12/width/125/height/174/15828_tiger-mother-comp.rev.1454361933.jpg 3x" data-max-w="450" data-max-h="625"/>Amy Chua, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Battle-Hymn-Tiger-Mother-ebook/dp/B004CLYKLI/ref=dp_kinw_strp_1">Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother</a></em> (Penguin, 2011).</p><p> Best-selling Yale Law professor Chua (<em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/World-Fire-Exporting-Instability-ebook/dp/B000FC0ZB2/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1352329022&sr=1-1&keywords=world+on+fire+chua">World on Fire</a></em> and <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Day-Empire-Hyperpowers-Dominance---ebook/dp/B001NLKUQY/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1352329049&sr=1-1&keywords=day+of+empire+chua">Day of Empire</a></em>) explores a more personal topic, how she applied Chinese parenting values to raising two daughters in the United States. Pushing her daughters to a degree few native-born American parents do, she tells a story of both success and resistance.</p><p> The family story Chua tells is fascinating, but the book’s deeper value lies in how it helps Americans better understand Chinese culture and values. Chinese parents, Chua argues, look at their role quite differently than their American counterparts: “Western parents are concerned about their children’s psyches. Chinese parents aren’t. They assume strength, not fragility.”</p></div>
  • <div class="lw_blurbs_body"><p><img width="111" height="173" alt="" src="/live/image/gid/12/width/111/height/173/42589_stanley_and_danko.rev.1454387442.jpeg" class="lw_image lw_image42589 lw_align_left" srcset="/live/image/scale/2x/gid/12/width/111/height/173/42589_stanley_and_danko.rev.1454387442.jpeg 2x" data-max-w="222" data-max-h="346"/>Thomas Stanley and William Danko, <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/Millionaire-Next-Door-Thomas-Stanley/dp/0671015206">The Millionaire Next Door</a></em> (first published in 1996).</p><p> Professor Terry Scout recommends this book as one of the best life lessons young people should absorb: become wealthy by the choices you make, including living frugally and avoiding debt. He says the book calls to mind the immortal advice from Charles Dickens’ character Mr. Micawber (from <em>David Copperfield</em>): “Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen [pounds] nineteen [shillings] and six [pence], result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.”</p><p>  Based on extensive interviews, Stanley and Danko conclude that wealth in America is usually “the result of hard work, diligent savings, and living below your means.” It’s an old lesson, well understood by many successful people—and it will be the foundation for many future millionaires, too.</p></div>

[Click here for more good reads.]

Spanning the Globe

Read perspectives on study—and life—abroad from three Business Management students in the new issue of 4Corners, the Global Education Office’s International Programs Magazine. BUS major Katie Zabel talks about her time in Australia and Scotland, BUS major Lily Britt shares memories of her time in Hong Kong, and BUS minor Evelyn Mantegani remembers her spring semester in Ireland.


  • Washington College has begun a new collaboration with Wake Forest University.

    Partnering with Wake Forest University, Washington College opens up a new opportunity for students who are seeking a master’s degree in management.

  • Pictured left to right: Professor Caddie Putnam Rankin, Mark Blumberg ’19, Evan Laking ’18, Emma Silber ’19...
    Junior business management majors Mark Blumberg, Kristi Kozlowski, and Emma Silber, along with graduating senior Evan Laking, were inducted into Sigma Beta Delta.
  • Tom Polen, president of BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company), a leading global medical technology company, will speak at the...

    Global medical technology business leader Tom Polen, president of BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company), will join College President Kurt Landgraf on April 16 in a discussion about leadership skills and the future of medical technology. 

[The Daly News: More Department doings]