Lady Gaga in the MBA Classroom

Lady Gaga belongs in an MBA classroom, say professors at the ESMT European School of Management and Technology in Germany. Dr. Martin Kupp of ESMT, along with professors Jamie Anderson and Joerg Reckhenrich of Antwerp Management School, is using a new case study on Lady Gaga to teach MBA students about strategic innovation.

The case study, “Lady Gaga: Born This Way?”, is used to explore the business lessons drawn from Lady Gaga’s meteoric career and how they could benefit established companies.

In the words of the authors: “Lady Gaga has been hyped by the popular and business press, but this is the first time that her career has been analyzed through the lens of proper business theory. Lady Gaga is not just an incredible creative talent, she is also a very astute business woman.”

The case study also provides an overview of Lady Gaga’s career and the circumstances that supported her in achieving her success within the context of the challenges facing the global music industry, such as digital distribution and piracy.

“The case study aims to help students to develop an understanding of strategic innovation, and how an individual, or organization, can shake up an established industry merely by framing and answering the fundamental strategic questions ‘Who is the customer?’, ‘What do I offer this customer?’, and ‘How do I create value for the customer ”“ and ultimately myself?’ differently” says Kupp. “It provides rich data to discuss the way in which new technologies, especially social media, can be used as tools for business innovation.”

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