It’s been two weeks at IMD so far. Two weeks filled with mixed emotions. Fear – had I made the right decision? Hesitance – how would I get along with all the new nationalities? Moving to admiration – hearing the amazing words and lectures by our Dean, and Leadership, Finance and Accounting professors. And excitement – experiencing Lausanne and its beauty. All mixed with the pain of loneliness – missing my family back home and not being able to feel the warmth of my two small kids.
Yet, every morning gives a fresh start, and the early morning breeze of Lausanne that flows through my face gives me all the energy I need for the day. There is always hot chocolate in the cold weather and fresh fruits to help digest the numbers that come my way in the form of Accounting and Finance.
End of Week One
One week passed, and I started feeling a little more comfortable with all the faces in the MBA auditoriums: Lorange and Cassani. I was surprised about the commonality in all of us. Despite the differences, all of us have taken the same decision to come to IMD!
I also started getting comfortable with the people in my group. We set some ground rules to keep things smooth and always started with a timing strategy. We were so thrilled when we cracked the first accounting assignment on time. I was exhausted by the end of the day, but so happy when fellow classmate, Yukari, offered to take me out shopping! It’s a good therapy for any woman to come back to the full form of energy after all…
End of Week Two
At IMD, lunches are amazing – it’s a no-brainer. But I also realized that what gets served along with the food are enriching experiences of people from around the world, which I have never experienced before.
Today’s lunch was something I will never forget throughout my life. We discussed everything from music, food, and weddings in each of our cultures. We were also validating all our thoughts and misconceptions about each other’s opinions and biases on respective countries. I heard Serbian music today, learned about the greasy Oliebol from the Netherlands, the rule of “Bureiko” in Japanese gatherings.
But as we got to the lip-smacking Pistachio Cherry cream dessert, we went into complete silence. Luy, from Brazil, shared his personal experience about facing extreme hardships, coming from an extremely modest background. We listened in awe as he narrated his transformational and inspiring story that led him to IMD.
We ended the lunch with a round of applause. As we left the table, we were discussing how this experience had been a testimony to what Professor Seán Meehan, our Dean, mentioned on the first day, “you will learn a lot from your classmates.”