Business students find power in working with diverse thinkers

Miami University – Top Stories

by Shavon Anderson, university news and communications
Miami students search for supplies during a marketing class project.
Inside Miami University’s Farmer School of Business, students and faculty talk in code.
“Hey, what’s your HBDI?” asks David Eyman, assistant lecturer.
The question is aimed at freshman JD Rudie, who’s casually reclined on a chair in Eyman’s office. It’s a slow Monday afternoon, and Rudie pauses to think before answering.
“Two, two, one, one. Blue, green, red, yellow,” Rudie replies. 
Eyman follows up with a few more numbers, pointing to a plastic data chart with his name on it and emphasizing the northeast quadrant colored yellow.
Macey Neubauer, a junior, walks in. Eyman repeats the question.
“I was green, then blue, yellow, then red,” she says. “Super organized.”
To an outsider, the conversation is indecipherable. To those in Farmer, it’s a universal language.
The letters and numbers are their results from the Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI). Every incoming Farmer student must take the assessment, which reveals how someone’s brain thinks. 

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Students are split into teams made of people who score differently, then run through projects. There’s usually confusion and frustration before it clicks.
A different kind of diversity 
The HDBI is part of the First-Year Integrated Core, for which Eyman is the faculty lead. It includes four classes that build key skills in critical, creative and ethical thinking, communication and collaboration:

BUS 101: Foundations of Business.
BUS 102: Foundations of Business Communication.
ESP 103: Creativity, Innovation, and Entrepreneurial Thinking.
BUS 104: Introduction to Computational Thinking for Business.

David Eyman, assistant lecturer, sits at his desk in his now notorious Post-it covered office.
The program was created after employers reported that college graduates weren’t equipped for the workforce. Using the whole-brain thinking assessment proved to be a game-changer, but for new students, it’s hard …

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