With Elon Musk, It is rocket science!


After selling PayPal for $1.5 billion dollars to Ebay in 2002 visionary Elon Musk could not just sit back and enjoy his multimillion achievement. He had greater things in mind, Space X. In 2002, Elon Musk invested his own money and founded the first private space company, which today opens the doors to space exploration again. After Nasa retired their 30 year program in 2011, many people thought that space exploration would come to an end. Elon’s goal was to make people believe in space again, and so he did. The idea of building shuttles and sending them to space seemed oddly expensive. One of the reasons why NASA retired after 30 years was the extremely high expense of building, fueling, manning, and sending just a single shuttle into space. Elon knew how expensive it was to maintain a space program like NASA so he started SpaceX with a particular goal in mind. What was this goal? To make spaceflight routine and affordable. In addition, to make humans a multi-planetary species. So how did he do it and how does he continue to strive to reach these goals?

Rocket Science                                                         elon_musk_portrait_by_lewis3222-d51e46s

  1. Understand why building rockets was so expensive

  2. Figure out how to go to orbit cheaper by lowering the cost by a third

  3. Hire NASA’s veteran engineers as well as passionate young engineers

  4. Break through barriers (literally and figuratively) even though the odds were astronomical (pun intended)

  5. Create a sustainable and reusable system to maintain lower costs

  6. Make more than 70% of each launch vehicle manufactured and assembled at the SpaceX Hawthorne production facility in order to avoid pitfalls associated with single source parts dependency

  7. Name his first two shuttle Falcon and Dragon (just because he can)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            v2_interior_wide            article-2643186-1E52F3A300000578-946_634x414

8. Establish a viable business plan by charging other countries to send cargo to the ISS

9. Secure a 6.8 billion dollar contract from NASA along with Boeing to finish designs, build, test and ultimately fly crews to the ISS

10. Become the real life Iron Man


It took more than a decade to accomplish what people never thought would be possible. Only world superpowers had been able to accomplish the same feats Elon did before he accepted the challenge. Even though the odds were not always in  his favor, his operation management and business skills were what lead SpaceX to be the first private company to ever launch a rocket out of Space. What is something else no one thought would be possible that was accomplished by a single man and his vision? Would you change anything about how Elon runs SpaceX or the process taken to accomplish his goals? Why were his operations management skills so essential to achieve his goal?











Will the Curse of the Billy Goat be Broken?


This statement has actually held true for the last 67 years. The Curse of the Billy Goat was supposedly placed on the Chicago Cubs in 1945 when the owner of Billy Goat Tavern was asked to leave the stadium because his pet goat stunk. To this day, it has been 105 long, sad years since our very own Chicago Cubs have won a World Series.



Can the curse be broken? It was announced Monday that the Cubs have come to an agreement with the city for a $500 million privately financed renovation of the historic Wrigley Field. They plan to use this money to redesign the locker rooms, revamp the food services, and build a new hotel and office building. They also said this renovation would bring jobs to the city and a better experience for the fans. Team Chairman Tom Ricketts even went further to say, “If this plan is approved, we will win the World Series.” As owner of this organization, Ricketts must make a change in order to keep the team alive.  They cannot continue with their same routines and expect to become a better team.

 The picture to the left shows owner of Billy Goat Tavern William “Billy” Sianis and his pet goat being denied into the game


The question that remains is do we want this renovation to take place or not? Is upper management making a cost effective and efficient decision? Or does this project contain too much risk that it could ruin the organization completely? I believe this could be a cost effective decision if the team starts winning some games. If the players are somehow motivated by a new stadium and can play more cohesively as a team, more people will attend the games, revenues will boost, and therefore this project would be worth it. This project can also contain a great amount of risk. If the team does not do well, many fans would be upset that the historical Wrigley Field was renovated for nothing.

As a Wrigleyville resident, I believe that the renovations would be somewhat of a nuisance. All of that construction going on right in my backyard is something I would not like to deal with. Management would have to find a way to keep the residence of Wrigleyville happy. On the other hand, if what they say is true and these renovations will bring jobs to the city and therefore boost the economy, I would not be opposed to that.



Another aspect to consider is the view of Tom Ricketts. As owner, he has a duty to create a successful team. What have the managers and owners done so wrong that this team has not been able to win for so long? Is there even any fault to be put on the managers and owners? I believe at least some of the fault can be put on the managers, but the players as well. It is their job as professional baseball players to win games.

 The picture to the right shows possible renovation ideas


The bottom line is that the Cubs need to win a World Series. How are they going to do this? What steps must management take in order for this project to work? Will renovating the field finally kill the Curse of the Billy Goat? Or will the curse live on…



Barrett, Joe. “Cubs Owner: Wrigley Plan ‘Will Win the World Series’.” Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company, Inc, 15 Apr 2013. Web. 17 Apr 2013.