How do you decide if or when you should do an MBA? 2018 candidate, Joyce Tsuchiya Melo, writes today’s guest entry about her decision.


During my journey towards the IMD MBA, my coach asked me, “Who are you?” It was as if he knew that this was the question that had been looming in my mind for the last few months. I had also been dreading the answer!

It had taken me 14 years to get to that point of my career. I had a very privileged position for a surgeon of my age – I was on a great path and yet something was off. I realized more and more I was always running against time, and finding ways around policies and contracts I firmly disagreed with. My patients and I were only subjects of a system I had no impact on. If I thought about healthcare as an industry, I was the workforce, but I wanted to be something else.

I needed change so badly, but oddly enough actually making a decision was almost too hard. Breaking free from an established, comfortable routine is scary, especially when you have a lot to lose. For someone with my background, taking the path towards an international MBA seemed very improbable. I was not in the least familiar with the terms and processes, and it was all overwhelming, almost paralyzing. So I decided to tackle it the only way I knew: one step at a time.

Little did I know that I only had to take that first step. Remember Alice in Wonderland? This is just like going into that rabbit hole. All of sudden you’re somewhere new with different rules, customs, people and you have no idea where you’ll end up.

During the last year, I have met so many interesting people, seen new things and had amazing experiences. Until then I had never taken the time to actually reflect on that first question, and I learned a lot about myself – I learned that I’m a work in progress, I guess we all are. And that’s why we’re here, to work towards whatever it is that we’re going to become.

So before embarking on the MBA journey, be ready to question everything you thought your life was supposed to be about. Be ready to lose and find yourself many times again and again. Be prepared to be amazed at what you can do and come into this with your heart open. The change you long for so much is just right over there, all you need is twenty seconds of courage.

Looking forward to the challenges to come!


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