When we returned to beautiful Lausanne from our summer vacation, there was a buzz of excitement and anticipation for what is to come. The last seven months have been an absolute whirlwind tour filled with lessons in growth and development. Now, the last stint is promising to be that and more. I am excited: I am always looking for new challenges, and this MBA has not failed in delivering precisely that!
I started to consider an MBA in my mid-twenties, when I realized that I wanted to change my career trajectory. (I still think it is borderline criminal to ask an 18-year-old to decide what they want to do with the rest of their lives!) My background was very technical, and I was working on a trading floor in data analytics. While there, I found that I was more intrigued by the strategic and transformation projects that I was assigned. This led me to consider a career in strategy or consulting. I also aimed to move to Europe -I did not want to be born, live, and die in the same place! At the age of 27, I finally decided to take the leap and joined IMD in Switzerland.
I am one youngest in my class, and I see this as a strength as I can learn from my classmates with more experience. This was a key deciding factor when choosing between IMD and business schools. To me, doing an MBA at a younger age makes sense for two reasons. Firstly, there is the opportunity cost perspective, and secondly it ensures that the compounding value effect on one’s career is maximized.
However, all the logic that I used in making my decision paled in comparison to this genuinely life-altering experience. I am not the same person I was when I first joined seven months ago. I attribute this to many things. It starts with the heavy hands-on learning from day one. Professor Benoit Leleux throws you right into the deep end of consulting, working with a startup at the very start of the program. This is supported by the outstanding, one-of-a-kind leadership stream led by Professor Jennifer Jordan. But a less obvious key factor is the carefully crafted, unique class who stretch and mold you through your interactions and their rich life experiences.