British are coming — to learn marketing the Kellogg School
partnership between Kellogg and the British Consulate
has helped narrow some trans-Atlantic
By Rebecca Lindell
British firm Sabeti Aerospace was finding the North
American market a tough nut to crack.
The 20-year-old company, which designs and manufactures
airline upholstery systems, had been trying for years without
success to gain clients among major U.S. carriers.
Then director Paymen Sabeti was selected by the British
government to attend an executive marketing program at the
Kellogg School. The course focuses on understanding and tapping
into the dynamics of how companies create value for other
companies --- and helps participants better understand American
Sabeti retooled his approach, returned to his prospective
clients and soon signed a contract with a large U.S. airline.
"The course was excellent for my purposes," says Sabeti.
Among his new insights: that price is not always the deciding
factor in winning business in North America. "It is the value
that you give your customers that is most important," he
Sabeti is one of scores of British executives who have
benefited from this unique partnership between the Kellogg
School, the British government and the Ellis Goodman Foundation.
The U.S. Marketing Scholarship Programme, as it is called,
brings 20 British executives from U.K. firms to Kellogg for
a one-week Executive
Education course. The executives spend
the following week interning at a leading U.S. company to
observe American marketing practices in context.
courses are aimed at senior managers who influence strategy
at their companies. Their tuition is covered by
U.K. Trade & Investment, and the U.S. Marketing Scholars
Fund (formerly the Ellis Goodman Foundation); their airfare
is paid for by British Airways-Chicago. Hundreds apply for
the scholarships each year. "It's been an extremely successful
venture," says Ellis Goodman, the former chairman and CEO
of Barton Brand Ltd. and a co-founder of the program, now
in its 11th year. "It's led to all sorts of new businesses
in the U.S. and the U.K. and has helped increase the understanding
of other cultures."
The companies that host the scholars often find their horizons
expanded thanks to the British executives.
"To be able to look at your own business through the eyes
of someone who doesn't market like an American is huge," says
Susan Snowden, senior vice president, new business at R.R.
Donnelly, which has hosted a half-dozen British executives
over the years.
For more information on hosting a British executive from
the U.S. Marketing Scholarship Programme, contact Richard
Knox at the British Consulate General of Chicago at Richard.firstname.lastname@example.org or Nicole Schneider at Kellogg Executive Programs at email@example.com.