Olin MBAs negotiate their way to victory in North American competition

  • March 11, 2024
  • By Guest Blogger
  • 2 minute read

Three second-year WashU Olin MBA students nabbed the top spot and a $5,000 prize in a business school negotiation competition in Montreal on March 1-2.

Jahana Wasir, Meeghan Sheppard and Linda Graff—all MBA 2024—bested 15 other teams in the competition at McGill University in the Desautels Negotiation Competition. According to the website, the competition invites graduate business school teams to "engage in a variety of negotiation simulations (that) range from complex business transactions to interpersonal conflict resolutions, providing comprehensive experience in different aspects of managerial negotiations."

The team received a trophy and $5,000 (Canadian) to split between them. Wazir shared the news on LinkedIn and gave us the OK to republish her recollections for the Olin Blog—recollections that go well beyond "poutine and sightseeing." Here's what Wazir wrote:

This win feels even sweeter because, with only 10 weeks left in our MBA program, we were granted the opportunity to apply everything we have learned over the past two years—accounting, strategy, marketing, economics, organizational behavior, and everything in between.  

Jahana Wazir

The competition was brilliantly organized, challenging us in ways that only real-world scenarios can, and the judges deserve their own round of applause. Their feedback was solid gold—insightful, constructive, and spot-on for guiding us not just to victory but also toward becoming better professionals.

Massive thanks to Jean-Nicolas Reyt and Mohit Goyal for organizing such an incredible event; it was no small feat to gather 16 teams from across Canada and the US in this capacity.

Beyond the competitive arena, the event offered us a valuable chance to connect with other participants. As we explored Montreal and enjoyed its *many* culinary offerings, we forged new friendships and gained insights from new perspectives.

The entire experience underscored that business is not a quantitative sport, it's about building relationships, understanding what brings each person to the table, and navigating challenges together.

Sheppard also commented on LinkedIn about the competition: "Our team competed four times, three to qualify for the final and once in a final round, and each time, the judges provided extremely high-quality feedback that we were able to use to continuously improve. I feel confident that the level of investment and interaction between teams and judges was a huge reason why we were able to take home first place!"

Photo above courtesy of McGill University.

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