Midsummer reflections..

It has been quite some time since I’ve written as our classmates have been churning out some world-class blog entries over the past few weeks. As you can tell from previous entries, we are now in the midst of our Company Engagement Projects (CEP) scattered across the world. From Azerbaijan to Zanzibar, the 90 of us have impressively managed to pretty much cover the globe. In my case, I’m working on a project with Amazon UK alongside my fellow blogger Sathappan to expand Amazon’s startup accelerator arm across Europe. At the same time, I’m working with a real estate crowdfunding startup in London on a project to expand its client-base internationally.

Over the past month, the program has shifted gears quite a bit. The academics have completely wound down and our focus has shifted towards completing our CEPs and lining up our dream jobs. Accordingly, the iron-clad structure from the first half of the year has given way to a more flexible schedule where we have to create our own sense of urgency. For most of us, this means balancing our CEPs while practicing for consulting case interviews, writing cover letters, updating CVs, and reaching out to the incredibly tight IMD alumni network. And since about half of us are doing our CEPs primarily from beautiful Lausanne, the tight class feel has become even more intimate at a more IMD “lite” level.

In prior blog entries, I mentioned that the program is very much front-loaded leaving very little time for personal reflection or early career search efforts. I still stand by this assertion, but I also now see the merit in this kind of structure. Now that we actually have the time and flexibility to reflect, I realize that this is best done in the absence of an academic workload and in the presence of our CEPs and career search. This allows us to reflect fully in the context of what we want to do after the MBA. After all, many of us (myself included) are looking for the trifecta of changing function, industry, and geography, which requires a fair bit of introspection and soul searching. Personally, I’m glad we have already completed the core academics as we figure all of this out. The various networking events, Navigating the Future conferences, and inspirational guest speakers only helped set the scene that much more. I am reminded of a quote by Confucius, “Study without reflection is a waste of time, reflection without study is dangerous.”

Next up, I am looking forward to having the class reunited back from our CEPs before we embark on our Discovery Expeditions in Dubai/Singapore, San Francisco/Monterey, and Tokyo/Shanghai. After taking these much needed 5 weeks to recharge and triangulate on our paths by way of our CEPs and some personal reflection, I’m sure we will all have a lot to talk about!

Til next time!

Mo