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Business Briefings

Hosted by the Institute of Leadership Studies and the School of Business & Leadership, Business Edge Briefings is a series of panel discussions for business owners and organizational leaders. Cutting-edge business strategies and techniques are discussed to assist domestic and global businesses in igniting innovation, inspiring creativity and ultimately – increasing profits and productivity.


For more information, or to sign up for advanced notice of the next The Business Edge Briefings email, please call 415-485-3202 or e-mail


Past Business Briefings


March: What is Crowd Funding and what can it do for you?  

Crowd Funding is a financing method that involves funding non-profit projects and for profit ventures with a range modest to significant contributions/investments from a group of individuals, rather than seeking more substantial sums from a smaller number of investors. The funding campaign and transactions are typically conducted online through dedicated Crowd Funding sites, often in conjunction with social networking sites. Depending on the project, those providing funds may be 1) making donations, 2) investing for a potential future return, or 3) prepaying for a product or service. Crowd Funding's success relies upon the ability to canvass a sufficiently large group of potential contributors. The idea is the same as that behind many fundraising campaigns: convincing enough people to contribute to reach a target figure. Crowd Funding sites are sometimes referred to as platforms because they provide a venue for founders and operators to publish the projects for which they are seeking funding to an audience of potential contributors/investors.


  • Michael Lipson, Moderator – Executive Coach & Strategic Consultant
  • Stuart Rudick, Founding Partner of Mindful Investors
  • Tom Serres, CEO and Co-Founder of


January 11, 2012: Developing Leaders to improve Your Bottom Line


  • Mike Cohill, President, Sutter Health, West Bay
  • Russ Colombo, President and CEO, Bank of Marin
  • Matthew Hymel, County Administrator, County of Marin
  • Pat Kendall, Medical Group Administrator, Kaiser Permanente
  • Mark Wood, Vice President, HR and Corporate Affairs, BioMarin


October 20, 2011: Tomáš Sedláček: Does Economics Trump Ethics? Does it pay to be good?

Tomáš Sedláček has shaken the study of economics. His provocative writing in his new book, The Economics of Good and Evil, has achieved bestseller status by arguing a simple, almost heretical proposition: Economics is ultimately about good and evil. Placing the wisdom of philosophers and poets over strict mathematical models of human behavior, Sedláček 's groundbreaking work promises to change the way we calculate economic value.

Sedláček is the lead economist of the Czech Republic’s largest bank and Advisor to President Hvel of the Czech Republic in the early 1990s. The Yale Economic Review considers him one of the "5 hot minds in economics" today. Published by the prestigious Oxford University Press, The Economics of Good and Evil aims to shed light on some of the most basic mechanisms of the world of economy.


September 14, 2011: Besty Myers

Betsy Myers is the former Executive Director of the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and and one of the founders and former Director of the White House Office for Women founded during the Clinton administration, and COO of President Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.

She has written a new book, called Take the Lead: Motivate, Inspire, and Bring Out the Best in Yourself and Everyone Around You.

Betsy will unveil the keys to effective leadership. Don’t miss hearing her front-row perspective that leadership is all around us – and within us. See Betsy’s


April 17, 2012: You, Online: Managing Your Personal Brand

Six experts offer their recommendations for improving your online presence.


  • Jay Randy Gordon, Program Monitor,  Founder, Hanukkah Hoops, Co-Founder, Transmedia Film Festival
  • Charleston Pierce, Founder & CEO, Charleston Pierce Presents – Producer, Model, Talent Coach
  • Michele Kelly, Owner & Chief Creative Officer Kelly-Fogelman Group Brand Reputation Development Firm 
  • Munir Haddad, Co-Founder & CEO, 
    Kiosk Creative 
  • Dan Gaylinn, PhD, Executive Consultant - Media Research Associates 
  • Zennie Abraham, CEO & Executive Producer Zennie 62 Media


May 16, 2012: Dr. Michael Sandel, Harvard University Professor and Author

Business leaders will benefit from this timely presentation and a lively discussion of what it means to be good corporate citizens in our global economy.

Join Michael Sandel to discuss his new book What Money Can't Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets. Sandel takes up one of the biggest ethical questions of our time: market values have crowded out nonmarket norms in almost every aspect of life--medicine, education, government, law, art, sports, even family life and personal relations. Without quite realizing it, Sandel argues, we have drifted from "having "a market economy to "being "a market society. Isn't there something wrong with a world in which everything is for sale? If so, how can we prevent market values from reaching into spheres of life where they don't belong? What are the moral limits of markets?

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