A final guest entry arrived just as I was preparing to leave – so here is the final blog post for 2017 from 2018 MBA candidate Maxim Yavorskiy! Happy reading and see you again in 2018 – Suzy
January is coming, and so is the moment when our studies begin. The closer it is, the more excited I feel about meeting my classmates. Tomorrow I will leave my home in Hong Kong, where I spent the last two years, and take a trip to Lausanne.
Four months earlier, in August, when I was applying to IMD, my attention was mainly focused on the school and its special features: curriculum, strong focus on leadership, as well as personalised tailored approach. But during the assessment day my interest shifted towards my future classmates. I clearly remember that looking at the applicants who arrived with me, I felt like “wow, I really want to study with these guys”.
It was curious to see how many different and unusual points of view we had on professional and casual situations. The thing is, when you study Masters or start to work, most of your friends and colleagues belong to more or less same industry or even function. In my case, most of my friends are FMCG white-collars. So try to imagine how unusual it was to meet people with backgrounds in data-science, engineering, private-equity, insurance and IB as well as to tackle business cases with them. Moreover, I was very impressed how our team managed to keep a collaborative spirit even when we had different opinions about the business cases and were under tough time pressure.
I expect that IMD will intentionally split our class into work groups containing the least compatible types of students. For example, putting together practical and cold-minded “analysts” with spontaneous and energetic “entertainers”. Students who have already experienced it say that this approach forges the leadership and team-work skills, especially when the team is under high workload and tough time-pressure. On the other hand, they noted that it takes quite a bit of effort to build a healthy and efficient atmosphere in a team, especially in the very beginning. It will be extremely interesting to see how we are going to transform: how we will learn to disagree and look for compromise, calibrate our sense of humor and style of working in a team.
I am sure that it is not the last surprising exercise for us. We will definitely learn a lot, even about ourselves, this year and I look forward for this new great experience.
IMD class, I can’t wait to meet all of you!