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One MAC Daddy of a Case Rip Cord

Congratulations to Colleen McCaffrey (OE), who appears to be the first member of the Class of 2002 to be a case protagonist! She is the primary author of MAC Development Corporation, where she appears as a major player in her family’s Chicago commercial real estate firm. This case was taught in first year Entrepreneurial Management last Thursday.

Uncle Jordy always knew there was something about Colleen, and that was way before she went out on a Harbus Intraview about a year ago. Here are the highlights of Colleen’s case:

Once thought to be related to Stanford and NFL wide receiver Ed McCaffrey (and his Duke/Vandy hoops playing brother Billy), it turns out Colleen has a massive family on her own, led by her parents Dick and Jane. As one can surmise that Dick and Jane McCaffrey have gotten enough shit over time for their appearances in elementary school reading texts, the Rip Cord will not pursue this line of humor further.

In Exhibit 2, “Biographies of Management,” Colleen has published herself as 27 years old during the case, which has a publication date of 2002. The Rip Cord has heard from a reliable source that Colleen is actually a year older than that now. Nice try, Colleen, but the Rip Cord can’t let you get away with perpetually passing yourself off as a year younger.
Somewhere around page 8, Colleen, who worked for MACD early last summer, starts modeling cash flows. She actually runs 18 sensitivity analyses by the end of May. Look at her go! Wouldn’t Finance Professor Emeritus Sam Hayes be proud of his little Math Camper? Someone please send him a copy of this case.

Exhibit 3 contains photos showing the existing condition of the vacant land behind a suburban Chicago residential neighborhood where the McCaffreys would like to build a business park. The land is currently owned by the Leone family and has fallen victim to unauthorized dumping. First, the Rip Cord must question the wisdom of doing business with a family named [Cor]leone whose relationship with local authorities has soured, and who is involved in contracting and dumping of any kind. And second, although the photos’ captions are rather hard to make out, there is no question that the land contains some modern art of the Bicycle Frame in a Tree variety. Can it really be wise to rid the world of these free exhibitions? OK, maybe so.

The best quote in Colleen’s case comes from youngest brother and recent college grad Jimmy McCaffrey, who is offered a full-time position to work for MACD. The firm’s offices are in the McCaffrey family home. After discussing whether or not it’s good to work in the family business at this point in his career, Jimmy opines “On the bright side, [my oldest brother] offered to help me deal with the issue of working out of my old bedroom, and Mom promised not to give me a hug and a kiss every time I leave the office for home. So I got that going for me. Which is nice.”

Loyal readers of the Rip Cord have to appreciate Jim’s use of the time-tested Bill Murray quote from Caddyshack here. Unfortunately, it turns out Colleen’s co-author didn’t appreciate the origin of this line so much, and the last bit was pulled from the final version of the case. This deletion is especially sad given Colleen’s Intraview last year involved a trip to the driving range, where she was reputedly quite a long ball hitter. Just like the Dalai Lama himself. Can you hear Carl the Assistant Greenskeeper now? “Big Hitter, Colleen. Long.”

Finally, Dick McCaffrey scores a large amount of cool points on the last page of the case, just like Colleen’s friend Cecily Kovatch’s (OD) mother Susan did a few weeks ago. He uses the phrase “the end of the day” to refer to, well, the latter part of a full-day meeting.

Congrats again to Colleen. The Rip Cord hopes you receive lots of good, free advice from the first years, and hopes the development ends up going well. That way, just like Carl, “when you die, on your deathbed, you will receive total consciousness. So you’ll have that going for you. Which is nice.”

Please send comments on your cases to Uncle.Jordy@mba2002.hbs.edu.

April 1, 2002
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