''Among the highlights of the programme were working and learning from other bright and talented people and being exposed to their experiences and cultures''
Nationality: UK/ Russian
Programme: Executive MBA, 2017
Pre-MBA: Head of Development and Education Programmes, EASST
Post-MBA: Deputy Director General, Strategic Partnerships & Digital Innovation, EASST
Current industry: Non-profit
Transitions made: Function
What motivated you to do an Executive MBA at Bayes Business School?
Before joining the MBA, I was primarily managing projects, leading teams and organising events for a small non-profit road safety organisation operating across various geographics and regions. I’ve gained a lot of experience in stakeholder relations management working closely with regional policymakers, VIPs and decision makers in the field.
My motivation to study on the Bayes Executive MBA programme was to broaden my knowledge and improve my skillset specifically in business, economics and entrepreneurship areas.
I felt that I needed to challenge myself, do something other than project management and explore ways I could help expand funding and business opportunities for non-profit sector.
I was also keen to learn something new along the way, to face and overcome challenges, make friends and new connections and get that practical experience and exposure needed to make positive changes in my career and for my organisation.
How would you describe your experience of the Executive MBA at Bayes?
I knew what I was signing up for when I joined the Executive MBA programme so I wasn’t surprised when I faced the challenges of working alongside studying. The only additional challenge for me was that halfway through the programme my daughter Olivia was born which was an absolute personal highlight, but it also added an extra pressure on my time-management skills!
In particular, the highlights of the programme were working and learning from other bright and talented people and being exposed to their experiences and cultures – it is an incredible learning asset that the MBA programme can give.
Another highlight for me was doing the international elective in Chile – a unique opportunity to go out there and try to apply newly acquired skills and knowledge in practice.
I was able to help my organisation expand the number of partners, clients and contracts. I think my MBA experience helped us to grow, attract new funding and become more sustainable in the long-term. This led to my further progression within the organisation to become a Deputy Director General.
Overall, the Executive MBA programme at Bayes was both hard work and rewarding. I found it very challenging at times especially when I had to manage work commitments and requirements of the programme at the same time.
But in the end, it was well worth it – the fact to you have to juggle that and stay effective is another valuable experience you gain if you do the Executive MBA programme.
What part did the Careers and Professional Development team play in your Bayes experience?
I found the Careers and Professional Development team to be helpful from the outset with lots of advice and guidance on further career development. I think that the Executive Presence workshops were useful and very thought provoking.
I also found Media Presence and Public Speaking skills gained during my MBA very useful and practical in my work life today.
What advice would you give to any prospective Executive MBA candidates?
It’s a great learning experience but you have to be prepared for it to avoid any extra stress along the way – so, time-management and work-study-life balance are the key components to successful and enriching process of MBA. (And maybe try not to have babies while doing the MBA!).