Singapore Life Science Case Competition- consulting workshop

Published by Biotech Connection Singapore on

Wed, 10 Oct 2018,

6:00PM – 8:30PM

5 Nepal Park,

Singapore 139408

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On 10 October 2018, over 100 enthusiastic participants of the inaugural Singapore Life Science Case Competition (SLSCC) gathered at ESSEC Business School, Asia Pacific for a networking session and training workshop conducted by L.E.K. Consulting associates. The SLSCC is a business case competition focused on the biotech and pharmaceutical industry jointly organized by Biotech Connection Singapore (BCS), L.E.K. Consulting and ESSEC Business School. The SLSCC is the first of its kind in Singapore and is a great opportunity for participants to get a taste of what consulting is about. The participants consisted of undergraduates, PhD students and post-doctoral researchers in the biomedical field, business school students, and industry professionals in management and investment roles.

BCS Consulting Lead, Natasha Ng, briefing the participants of SLSCC on the rules of the competition


Participants at the SLSCC briefing and workshop session

The event started with an information session on the competition followed by a networking session, where participants had the opportunity to connect with others from various diverse fields of expertise and form teams.  At the end of the networking session, 37 teams registered to compete for the top 4 spots, with a chance to win a $1000 cash prize, a tour of the L.E.K. Consulting Singapore office and lunch with L.E.K. Consulting associates.

During the workshop, L.E.K. Consulting associates started off with a brief introduction to L.E.K. Consulting, a leading global strategy consulting firm with a strong presence in Asia Pacific since 1983. The firm offers strategy planning, activation and transaction support across all relevant areas of healthcare and life sciences including pharmaceuticals, medical technology, diagnostics, personalized medicines and contract research services. They have 46 dedicated healthcare and life sciences partners and completed more than 1600 projects in this sector in the past 5 years.

The associates then shared with the participants the case solving approaches used by L.E.K. Consulting case teams, as well as helpful tips and tricks to succeed in this case competition. They introduced an approach to solving business problems, which involves 4 key steps: issue mapping, work planning, research and analysis, and presentation. The first step in the problem solving process is to map out the key issues in a structured framework and formulate a set of hypotheses to be tested. Here, the associates recommended participants to include issues that are mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive to be comprehensive in examining root causes of the problem. Subsequently, in the work planning phase, the team will determine what information is needed to prove or disprove each hypothesis, and how this information will be gathered. The next step is to research the information and analyse the data to derive insights. Finally, the solution to the problem will be presented in a clear and concise manner to the client, using data from the research to support the conclusions.


L.E.K. Consulting Senior Associate Consultant, Alex Berg, presenting on case solving approaches to the participants of SLSCC

The associates emphasized helpful tips such as the importance of the 80/20 rule and the pyramid principle. The 80/20 rule states that 80% of the impact can usually be achieved by addressing the 20% of the causes that are the most important, meaning that participants should focus on the central issues instead of trying to cover everything comprehensively. The pyramid principle applies to the presentation style of giving the key insights first, followed by the supporting evidence, to help the audience focus on what matters.

The training workshop concluded with the release of the case brief for the competition. The objective of the case is to develop a growth strategy for a pharma company to grow its Asia Pacific business . More specifically, the teams should prioritize 2 to 3 countries and develop a strategic roadmap and key implementation steps to achieve the targeted growth. The detailed background information and fact pack was then released to the participants the following day.

L.E.K. Consulting Associate Consultant, Derrick Teng, briefing the participants on the case for the competition.

The presentations from the participants will be judged according to the breadth, depth and creativity of their analysis, whether their recommendations are sufficiently supported by their analysis, and the effectiveness of their verbal and written communication. The teams have a total of 5 days to submit their presentations for the preliminary round and the race has begun! The top 4 teams will be selected by the L.E.K. Consulting associates and the BCS committee. The results will be announced on 22 October, leaving participants 2 days to prepare for the final presentation to the judging panel. Good luck to all participants and we look forward to seeing you all on 24 October for the finals!

Key takeaway messages

  • 4 Key Steps of solving business problem involves issue mapping, work planning, research and analysis.
  • 80% of the impact can be achieved by addressing 20% of the most important causes.
  • Pyramid style of presentation involves giving key insights first followed by supporting evidence.
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Biotech Connection Singapore (BCS) is part of an international network of non-profit organizations, that aims to promote the transfer of ideas from theory to real world applications by providing a platform for fostering interaction between academia, industry and businesses.