DuPage Habitat for Humanity – Group 6

Project Description:

Our team partnered with DuPage Habitat for Humanity to raise awareness and support the organization’s mission by building homes, communities and hope. On Saturday, November 4th our team participated in a build day where we helped construct a home for a family in need. Over the course of the project, the team successfully raised $2,620 by utilizing a social media campaign and a donut fundraiser.

Charity Description:

Habitat for Humanity was founded in 1973 and has served more than 9.8 million people.  This organization serves 1,400 communities in the United States and 70 countries around the world. The mission is to have a world where everyone has a decent and affordable place to live. Their mission is carried out by utilizing volunteers and providing affordable homes to families. Habitat’s slogan is: “through shelter, we empower”.

Success Objectives:

As a team we concluded that our success will be determined by the following three objectives:

  • Raise awareness
  • Raise $2,500
  • Learning the history and goals for Habitat for Humanity


The team surpassed the fundraising goal by raising $2,620 and generated awareness among our social network. The campaign was trending on GoFundMe through Facebook with 55 shares and we had approximately 600 views of the post across our LinkedIn profiles. Given these metrics, our team was successful in accomplishing our goals.

Lessons Learned:

Given the short time frame of this project, there were three critical lessons that our team learned:


  • Communication can make or break your project
  • Knowing your team members’ strengths is beneficial
  • Risk management and contingency planning


As mentioned before, the team had ten weeks to meet a critical goal of fundraising $2,500. Given the short time frame, communication among team members and Habitat for Humanity was critical for our success. Relying on our team members strengths was instrumental in our fundraising campaign. Our team members relied heavily on their networks at our company along with family and friends to meet our goal. Given the nature of construction activities on build day, it was necessary to have inclement weather as part of the risk management plan. Prudent planning allowed us to still complete a successful event despite the inclement weather.



Reflecting on the project and examining the success and challenges led the team to offer some guidance to ensure success on a future project. Planning early was a critical component to our success. Identifying a charity that all team members feel passionate about will impact team motivation and morale and will drive success. At the onset of the project identify the strengths of each team member and assign project tasks based on strengths. These two components will establish a strong foundation to execute a successful project plan.

Event Photos:


Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University Fundraiser – Group 4

Project Proposal

Team Charity’s Angels set-up a goal to raise money and awareness for the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University with a focus on the Early Cancer Detection Institute. In order to raise money and awareness for our charity, we hosted an event with a silent auction and set up a donation page on our charity’s website. The event was hosted at Safehouse Chicago where 20% of the bar tab and 100% of tips were donated to the charity.  We also set up a fundraising page through Northwestern Memorial Foundation to raise additional funds.  The capacity of the event was over 50 people.  There was a silent auction during the event which included items such as sports memorabilia, original art, and restaurant gift cards.

Donation page: http://foundation.nmh.org/charitysangels


The charity that our group has chosen for our fundraiser is the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center. The Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University has significantly made its footprint in the Chicagoland area by being one of the best cancer centers in the nation. We chose this charity because of the heartbreaking effect of cancer on nearly everyone’s life in some way, including a member or our team who has a family member currently battling stage-four breast cancer at the Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center. The proceeds of our fundraiser are going to the Early Cancer Detection institute at Lurie to increase research capabilities and awareness for pre-cancer screenings and technologies. It is critical that cancer is detected in early stages in order to substantially reduce its mortality and effect on our lives.

Analysis of success

Our goal was to raise $2,000 through tips and 20% of sales from the event at Safehouse Chicago, the silent auction, and the donation page. Given that the event fell on a Wednesday at 5:30pm, we strived to have at least 40 attendees at the event. We believed that if we reached 40 people or more, the amount of sales and tips received would be enough to contribute to our monetary goal of $2,000. The most important success measure for Charity’s Angels is if group had fun together.

Success Metrics Goal Actual
Total Donations  $                              2,000.00  $  2,428.49
Event Attendees 40 60+
Silent Auction At least $718.20 to cover cost of consignment items  $  1,100.00

Our fundraising efforts were successful. We were able to raise a total of $2,428.49 which was 21.4% more then our initial goal. We are currently in the process of getting our employer, Northern Trust, to match our donation of $2,428.49. More importantly, we were able to raise awareness for Early Cancer Detection and have fun while doing it! We believe we successfully raised awareness through social media, emails, and word of mouth due to the amount of people who showed up to the event in addition to the number of people who generously donated on the donation website. Our group is extremely grateful for everyone’s contributions and support during our fundraiser.


  • A silent auction requires more than one person to supervise during the event.
  • Remain supportive of one another. Remaining positive about the event and project helped the team have a fun and successful event.
  • With donations, a personal email works significantly better than social media posts.
  • Details can get lost in translation through multiple forms of communication.


  • Communicate with the team regularly – Set up weekly meetings and check points
  • Days in the beginning of the project are just as crucial as days leading up to the event. Stay organized and follow a schedule to meet smaller deadlines prior to the event.
  • When trying to raise online donations, send personal emails. Many times shares on social media are overlooked.
  • Develop a defined plan, such as a milestone schedule with deadlines and a responsibility matrix, to stay on track and minimize scope creep and procrastination.
  • If you’re going to do a silent auction, assign multiple people to work on the bidding and collect funding for the items. Make sure individuals pay using the correct method prior to gifting them the item.
  • Items on consignment with a higher price tag may prove difficult to sell to a younger crowd.

The team learned and demonstrated project management skills while raising awareness and donations for a great cause.  During the event, our team had a great time seeing our hard work pay off. Overall, this project great experience.  We learned and demonstrated project management skills all while contributing to an honorable cause.  Even after facing a few challenges, our team had a great time seeing our hard work pay off!



Fundraiser for the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab – Group 5

Project Description:

On Saturday, November 4, 2017, our team successfully hosted a wristband deal at local bar/restaurant, McGee’s Tavern. The $30 wristbands included an open bar (select beers, wine, liquor, and soda) for a three hour period with approximately 33% of the proceeds going toward the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab. Additional funds were raised via a cash donation bucket on site at the event and through a dollar-for-dollar match by McGee’s on all purchases outside of the scope of the wristband made during the final hour of our event.

Charity Description:

The Shirley Ryan AbilityLab (SRAL), formerly known as the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC), is a local nonprofit organization that has received international recognition as being the best rehabilitation hospital for the past 27 consecutive years. The Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, officially established in March 2017, now features five ‘innovation centers’ for perfecting rehabilitation in the following areas: brain, spinal cord, nerve & muscle & bone, pediatrics, and cancer.

Home to some of the best and brightest doctors and therapists, the SRAL is constantly undergoing new trials and research in order to improve medical advancements each and every day. The organization provides high quality clinical care to over 50,000 patients per year, treating a number of complex conditions ranging from spinal cord injuries and strokes to traumatic brain and sports injuries. The organization relies on philanthropic support in order to deliver high quality care and groundbreaking research that impacts the lives of its patients and the community.

Success Metrics and Analysis:

The group decided that we would call the project successful if the following criteria were met:

  • Host a fundraising event for the SRAL
  • Raise awareness of the charity and its overall mission
  • Learn about project management
  • Have fun during the course of the project planning and event
  • Receive positive feedback from event attendees

We decided our project’s success would be determined by:

  • 50+ attendees at our event
  • Raising at least $500 for the charity
  • Amount of positive feedback we received from attendees of our fundraising event

In the end, we surpassed our goals with attendance of 63, and we raised $1,612. The check provided by McGee’s accounts for the 47 Wristbands ($470) and “Power Hour” ($241) totaling $711.

A breakdown of the financials is found below:

Lessons Learned:

  • Project Managers should anticipate a number of obstacles beyond the constraints outlined in the plan. Most obstacles will be offset by contingencies within the plan; however, some may require participants of the project to keep a fluid approach and deal with things at the moment they occur.


  • Project management teams should be prepared to deal with the aftermath of the event. When evaluating the potential risks associated with the project, we realized that the majority of events that could go wrong would have occurred on the actual day of the event. Leading up to the event, we focused mostly on promotion and raising awareness of both our charity and the event itself. We also learned that having a clear set of responsibilities laid out for each team member following the event is crucial to the success of the event.  Fortunately, we were able to complete our event with little to no risk.


Every project is subject to risk.  Certain activities are dependent upon the preceding activities, which can cause a domino effect if one goes wrong.  If risk is not mitigated, deferred, or avoided, the entire project can collapse.  Being proactive and planning ahead on what to do with these potential risks was critical for our project’s success.

Team cohesion is one of the most important elements of project management. Each member should be clear about their role and participation.

Teams should enjoy the event they have planned. A lot of work is needed to reach the results, and the moment to celebrate that accomplishment should be present in each team member’s mind.  This will contribute to team chemistry and reduce the stress that comes with all that work.

Event Photos:

Apple’s Product Cycle



Apple Corporation seems to always have something new to keep their name a popular topic. Even though the adjustments they made to their software are very minimal and there are already systems very similar out, every new launch from Apple a huge hype and gets attention from majority of people.

Every time a new software or phone is released by Apple, they have a huge Keynote that has viewers from all over the world. Apple does not spend money on the advertising for the Keynote but they are still able to have millions of viewers. The Keynote goes through the details of the new product, shows the product to the public for the first time, and finally gives the release date for the item. With the release date being in the near future, customers gain anticipation to get their hands on the product when it first goes public.

Apple now has a cycle for each one of its’ products so they are constantly introducing the next big thing. With this stable cycle, Apple is always able to keep their company on the surface and continue to be a popular brand. Although some may think Apple is making their previous products go out of date very quickly, the purpose of Apple’s constant cycle of upgrades is to make their product irresistible to the millions of people that have yet to buy the product. The cycle also manages to keep the competitors on their toes; when they come out with their first of a product similar to Apple’s, Apple is already ready to release the next generation of the product.

Apple is making their product cycles long enough to have customers with the past model upgrade at the time of release while maintaining the newest products constantly. Some people are ready for the upgrade when it comes out but even the people that are not will be intrigued by the newest release and pay the price to keep up with the latest and greatest from Apple. For example, Apple is at the 8th generation of iPhones, but when the six came out there were still lines for hours the day of the release, even after some people participated in the online preorder that Apple offers.

Thus far the Apple product cycle has been able to keep the company pretty successful and at the top of the market. Apple is able to release the newest products without spending much on advertising and having a good turn out.




The Electronic Tattoo

'Biostamps' made by IC10 feature bendable circuitry that can stretch up to double its original size

Motorola’s tattoos could replace passwords

LINK: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/mobile-phones/10090863/Google-Motorolas-tattoos-could-replace-passwords.html

There’s a new technology on the horizon – a quite interesting one at that. This technology plans to remove the need to require passwords and replace them by simply with a phone being near the user’s body. The idea was suggested by Dennis Woodside, Motorola’s chief executive, at California’s D11 Conference on May 30, 2103. The tattoos were developed by MC10, an engineering firm in based in Massachusetts. The tattoos contain flexible electronic circuits that are attached to the user’s skin using a rubber stamp. Nokia has previously experimented with this, but Regina Dugan, Motorola’s senior vice president of advance research was a former head of the US Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The agency demonstrated the silicon-based technology that uses the bendable electronic circuits. It was initially designed for medical purposes, but Motorola is hoping for success with these “Biostamps” for consumer authentication purposes. Motorola’s has the notable expert on their team to get the pan implemented quicker than other companies.

Motorola is also investigating the Proteus Digital Health Pill, which is a computer chip that is powered by a battery using the acid in the user’s stomach. This was already approved by the US Food and Drug Administration and was given approval by European regulatory in 2010. The pill creates a unique signal that gets picked up by devices outside the body, which could be used to verify a user’s identity. It’s been claimed that the pill can be taken daily for about a month.

Admittedly theses experimental ideas are not going to be on sale anytime soon, but Wooside has claimed Motorola has “tested it authenticating a phone, and it works.”
Former Google employee who now is apart of Motorola said, “Having the boldness to think differently about problems that everybody has everyday is really important for Motorola now. Authentication is irritating. In fact its so irritating only about half the people do it, despite the fact there is a lot of information about you on your smartphone, which makes you far more prone to identity theft.”

Motorola has already begun to enter the smartphone realm by preparing to launch the Moto X Phone in October. It will go on sale for much less than the iPhone and other smartphones in the market now. Motorola is behind but it just can’t simply compete by selling the same phone everybody else is selling at a cheaper price. It needs to exceed expectations and issue a technology that surpasses that of its competitors.

Although many people will be creeped-out by this, I think that it’s not only fascinating but that it can revolutionize the industry. I agree with the former Google employee; it is very irritating to have to log in with a password over 50 times a day. I am in fact so irritated that I do not have a password on my iPhone or iPad. Although some may believe that is a security issue, I make sure I have the devices either near me or in a locked area. The minute I discover my phone is in danger I quickly find a computer and lock it and erase its data. But that’s beside the point; it is a pain to go through authentication constantly. I think the idea needs much work and warming up to, but I think it’s fantastic. We already have very technologically advanced biometric systems in motion, so why don’t we get consumers to start using them to their benefit as well?

How do you think the company Motorola will do? What do think of this idea? Are there safety issues? Would you be willing to try it out?

SOURCE: The Telegraph

A Cocktail Shaker with a Twist













Fellow college students just like us had an idea that had the potential to turn into millions.   The Mason jar has been popular among people and restaurants for use as a drinking glass.  But what about a cocktail shaker?  When college friends Eric Prum and Joshua Williams were playing around with a Mason jar last year, and transformed into a hip new cocktail shaker, they had no idea it would turn into such a hit.  Their Mason Shaker idea was made with a Ball Mason jar and fitted  with a custom lid representing the same structure as a cocktail shaker lid.   Last November, the initial order of the shakers were introduced at West Elm stores and thousands were sold out with in just three weeks.  In January, the sales of the shakers through the Internet and the West Elm stores had reached $250,000.

In January last year, these college buddies first came up with the Mason shaker and designed it.  Later in that following July, they came across this crowd-funding website called Kickstarter.  This site helps raise money for start-up businesses.  Their goal was to raise $5,000 to help manufacture and supply their product.  They shattered their goal of $5,000 by raising $74,738 from approximately 2,000 investors in as little as a month. 

This was not the students’ first entrepreneurial engagement.  Williams, who had a passion for food and drinks, started a catering and cocktails business with his fellow friend Prum.  During the company’s events they discovered how useful these jars worked well for creating their unique cocktail concoctions.

Previously, Prum was a designer and developer for a paintball company, so he took the knowledge gain from this experience and thought to design something with his best friend – a cocktail shaker.  These friends took their product design skills and knowledge to refine their Mason jar cocktail shaker invention.  Making over hundreds of tweaks and finally happy with the final prototype, they began their business.   Prum and Williams founded the W&P Design, a Brooklyn-based product design company.  Then they launched the Mason jar shaker on Kickstarter.  Prum was working as a full-time managing partner, while Williams still employed in his banking job, working as an adviser on product development and business strategy – 2 important operations management tasks.  Then they launched their product by a good deal with a home goods chain called West Elm. 

The company is already profitable, but it’s still very much in startup mode.   They are both hoping that through their skills and knowledge, they will achieve longevity in their business.

I believe these students turned a simple idea into a creative invention that became popular and profitable, but it maintained its profitability and exceeded it through knowledgeable decisions on operating their business.

Prum and Williams, a pair of wise college students made very intelligent and correct operations decisions in their start-up business to not only reach goals, but exceed them.  Their Mason jar shaker was a success and their future decisions will continue to show how successful the shaker can be and how their business will progress.

Source: Link







Welcome to the World of Blogging!

The objective of this blog site is to extended our classroom to the world! I would like for you to share personal reflections on the material covered in class – for example, what you learned that was new or surprising to you, examples of how you have seen the concepts or philosophies practiced in your jobs (either good or bad), discussion of interesting articles or news items about operations that you read in the newspaper, magazines, or on the Internet. 

I expect you to seek out relevant information from the Internet and other relevant web sites to supplement the class material and support your thoughts and interests.  You need to cite any sources that you use in the creation of your post.

Happy blogging!