The Advantages of Kepner-Tregoe Training


Strain a muscle and it will get sore. It might even spasm. Your best bet for relief from the pain? To rest, and to let time heal.

In business, problems don’t have a way of working themselves out when they’re left alone. Effective decision-making requires resolute leadership. Thought leaders aren’t born but made.

They achieve that status by being able to identify issues before they become crises, by being agile and attuned to the ever-evolving market conditions, by being fearless advocates for efficiency and by modeling the kind of analytical skills that transform any organization into a Thinking Organization. (The mind is a muscle, too, after all.)

TCU’s MBA program is one of only a handful in the United States to offer its students the Kepner-Tregoe Problem-Solving & Decision-Making certification used by many global firms. Kepner-Tregoe is recognized the world over as one of the pioneering firms in the areas of management consulting and training services. Their expertise has been applied in virtually every industry, and their clients have included Honda, Sara Lee, Siemens, NASA, Novartis AG and Uniroyal Tires.

But what differentiates Kepner-Tregoe’s methodology from other approaches to decision-making and problem solving? And how might taking full advantage of TCU’s Kepner-Tregoe training help you stand out from your MBA competition?

According to Cariel Apodaca, TCU MBA ’17, who is currently completing a project management internship at Vizient, the Kepner-Tregoe way “gets to the heart of the issue in a way that’s efficient, effective, more dependable and frequently quicker.”

Chris Nanni, a 2016 PMBA who now works in the Cross-Functional Development Program at Bell Helicopter, agrees. “Kepner-Tregoe training teaches you a process to predict, prevent and resolve potential issues in any given scenario.”

Both Cariel and Chris have found ample opportunities to apply their Kepner-Tregoe knowledge in a professional capacity. For Chris, his familiarity with Kepner-Tregoe principles has been key to his success in creating productive relationships with his B2B customers.

“When negotiating complex sales, it’s common practice in many industries to start with a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses Opportunities, Threats) analysis,” he says. “My Kepner-Tregoe training helps me to elaborate on SWOT findings to map out clear negotiation strategies.”

Cariel’s experience is that Kepner-Tregoe principles help her to manage up. “I had never heard of Kepner-Tregoe Training before coming to TCU,” she says. “Instead, I used gut instinct and lots of discussions to make my decisions. What I learned from this training, though, is that gut instinct is absolutely important, but it’s not enough. Telling a manager, ‘I made this decision because it felt right’ is much less powerful than, ‘I ran this detailed analysis and determined that we should do X because of Y, and if you’d like to know why we didn’t choose Z that’s here, too.’”

TCU’s Kepner-Tregoe Training offers prospective MBAs a rare opportunity to integrate their quantitative and their qualitative competencies. Fact-finding, data analysis, effective communication, motivation and team-building techniques are all vital components of the Kepner-Tregoe philosophy.

Cariel reports that her Kepner-Tregoe training taught her that “when everyone has a voice and alternative viewpoints are considered, the company wins.” On a more pragmatic level, Chris hopes all MBAs appreciate that “the skills acquired in the Kepner-Tregoe  program are constantly brought up in corporate talent reviews. Executives look for ‘soft skills’ in candidates and have a difficult time finding employees who can deal with issues methodically and effectively.”

Learn more about all the features that make the MBA program at TCU unique by visiting the Neeley School of Business School website.

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