For anyone pursuing an MBA, life usually moves at breakneck speed. At IMD, with its intense 1-year holistic curriculum packed with the regular classes, assignments, projects, exams and coupled together with experiential learnings and leadership development, I could be forgiven for fathoming the prospect of cruise control.
Luckily summer 2020 provided a welcome respite from the external events happening around us. MBAs spent the summer travelling to various parts of the continent. Taking advantage of cheap fares and accommodation while maintaining safe distancing and adhering to the safety requirements of the countries they visited, my friends used the time to rejuvenate their tired bodies and revitalise their minds after a rigorous 6 months. From crystal clear waters of Bodrum, Turkey and sandy beaches of Sicily, Italy to the sun-kissed city of Porto, Portugal to the quiet little sleepy-town of Bamberg, Germany, we marvelled at the pristine beauty of Europe.
The time afforded most to reflect on the half a year that had passed while planning for the journey ahead.
As we commence Module 3, I sense a shift in gears towards job-hunting. The rain that greeted us on Monday could not dampen our spirits as friends caught up and shared adventures. Later in the day, we learnt the subtle nuances in the art of negotiation and realised the program was inadvertently preparing us for some critical decisions that would be made in the coming months.
While the impetus towards accelerating job applications and interview preparation can be tempting and gratifying, I strongly believe it is prudent we don’t lose sight of the personal and professional development we have undertaken thus far, lifelong bonds forged in the fabled dungeons (aka study rooms) and memories shared in the charming city of Lausanne.
The MBA program, at first glance appears to encourage a sprint for the finish line, however in reality, every candidate here is running at his or her own pace. At the end of the day, all we have to strive towards is to be better than the person we were yesterday.