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									      Early Preparation for Business Success

   The Most Efficient Route to Business Success—
 Strong Undergraduate Engineering Degree and C.A.,
Probably Experience Overseas and Chinese Language

       The Single Most Important Skillset—
    Excellent Oral and Written Communications




                      COMPAS Inc.
         Public Opinion and Customer Research
                    October 11, 2010
    Preparing for Entrepreneurial Success - BDO Dunwoody Weekly CEO/Business
            Leader Poll by COMPAS in Canadian Business for Publication
                                   October 11, 2010




1.0 Overview
        As the most efficient preparation for business success, the CEOs and
    business leaders on the COMPAS business panel would advise a young person
    today to acquire:
                an engineering undergraduate degree in an expanding
                subfield from a top Canadian university;
                C.A. certification;
                early work experience in strong economies overseas;
                probably Chinese language skills or possibly Spanish;
                and
                above all, excellent oral and written skills in their working
                language, normally English.
        An M.B.A. is desirable. It is more valuable than almost all other advanced or
    post-graduate degrees including a law degree. The one exception, say
    panelists, is a doctorate in engineering, which equals in value the M.B.A. and
    trumps other doctorates.
        Acquiring Chinese language skills is more valuable than acquiring most
    Ph.D.’s and more valuable than Spanish, which in turn is more valuable than
    German or Japanese.
        These are the key findings from this past week’s Internet survey of CEOs
    and business leaders on the COMPAS panel. The weekly business survey is
    undertaken for Canadian Business magazine under sponsorship of BDO
    Dunwoody LLP.



2.0 Details
        Table 2 provides detailed findings.




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                                      www.compas.ca
Preparing for Entrepreneurial Success - BDO Dunwoody Weekly CEO/Business
        Leader Poll by COMPAS in Canadian Business for Publication
                               October 11, 2010

          Table 2: (Q1-16) On a 7 point scale where 1 means of limited use
             and 7, of great use, how useful would each of the following
                            options be in your judgment? 1
                                         Mean      7    6     5    4     3    2    1    DNK
    The development of excellent
    written and oral                      6.4     64 19 14         3     0    0    0      0
    communications skills
    The highest degree from a top         5.6     26 33 24 12            3    2    0      0
    Canadian university in the field
    Acquiring C.A. certification          5.5     28 24 26 14            6    1    0      1
    The highest degree from a top         5.4     21 30 24 15            8    1    0      1
    U.S. university in the field
    A Ph.D. In engineering                5.1     22 23 16 20 14              4    0      1
    An M.B.A. degree                      5.1     16 28 31 11 11              2    2      0
    A undergraduate degree in
    expanding subfields in                5.1     13 28 30 20            6    1    1      1
    engineering
    Early work experience in the
    fastest growing economies             5.0     15 20 34 19            5    7    0      0
    overseas
    Acquiring a law degree                4.9     12 25 26 21 12              4    1      0
    Acquiring excellent Chinese           4.6     14 21 25 16            7   15    3      0
    language skills
    A Ph.D. In any field                  4.2      9    10 23 27 19 11             2      0
    A Ph.D. In economics                  4.2      7    14 23 23 15 15             3      1
    Early work experience in the          4.2      3    16 16 39 15           7    2      1
    U.S.

1
  Full question wording: “Suppose, just before graduating from high school, the very multi-
talented child of a close friend wanted your advice about post-secondary education and early
career experiences in order to build the basis for potential success in any sector of the
economy. On a 7 point scale where 1 means of limited use and 7, of great use, how useful
would each of the following options be in your judgment?”




                                                                                           3
                                        www.compas.ca
Preparing for Entrepreneurial Success - BDO Dunwoody Weekly CEO/Business
        Leader Poll by COMPAS in Canadian Business for Publication
                               October 11, 2010

                                Mean    7   6   5    4   3   2   1   DNK
Acquiring excellent Spanish      4.1    4   12 29 25 14 11       5     0
language skill
Acquiring excellent Japanese     3.5    4   5   13 25 26 19      8     0
language skills
Acquiring excellent German       3.4    4   3   15 27 21 21      9     0
language skills

    The following verbatim comments provide a nuanced sense of respondent
opinion:
         Work ethic and communication skills trump everything else.
         Think global..... and not just China & India!
         The biggest help would be to follow the lead of mentors
         either through knowing them personally or through reading
         their biographies. It is hard sometimes for bright people to
         accept that they don't need to reinvent the wheel. They save
         a lot of time when they get to realize and accept that.
         People may want to consider an MBA degree from a
         European top school as it could open more opportunities
         than a Canadian MBA and in some cases better than an
         American degree as well.
         Overseas and varied experience is the most important
         factor. There is too much time spent on paper qualifications.
         It is very difficult to propose the "best" education/work
         experience for the future without first deciding on the future
         economic direction for the world and the ramifications on the
         existing economic leaders/countries and their reactions to
         this change.
         I hold a B.Sc. and a M.A. I had started on my Ph.D. but
         realized that I would become too limited in job prospects in
         the 'real world', so I dropped further education at that point.
         Best Decision I could have made. The biggest problems we
         have in the economy today are over-educated people with




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                               www.compas.ca
   Preparing for Entrepreneurial Success - BDO Dunwoody Weekly CEO/Business
           Leader Poll by COMPAS in Canadian Business for Publication
                                  October 11, 2010

            little common sense (i.e.: Economists ... You know .. those
            who are a cross between a Weatherman and an Armchair
            Quarterback ... one overpaid to be largely wrong, the other
            has all the answers but has never played the game).
            Education, education, education!!




3.0 Methodology
       The COMPAS web-survey of CEOs and leaders of small, medium, and
   large corporations was conducted October 5-8, 2010. Respondents constitute
   an essentially hand-picked panel with a higher numerical representation of
   small and medium-sized firms.
       Because of the small population of CEOs and business leaders from which
   the sample was drawn, the study can be considered more accurate than
   comparably sized general public studies. In studies of the general public,
   surveys of n=98 are deemed accurate to within approximately 9.9 percentage
   points 19 times out of 20. The principal investigator on this study is Conrad
   Winn, Ph.D.




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                                    www.compas.ca

								
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