It must have been sometime in early February, one afternoon while sitting in my office at World Vision Georgia in a small town east of Tbilisi, when I received the call that I had been admitted to INSEAD’s MBA programme. I quickly betrayed the cool I kept while on the phone with the INSEAD admissions representative by sending my fellow Peace Corps friends all cap messages using my agency-provided, T-9 typing Nokia phone.
Hello, all the wonderful readers of our blog. I was recently given access to blog like many of my 18J classmates. We all are super excited to share our stories and journeys with you and hopefully inspire some of you and quell your insatiable thirst for information (been there done that).
... except you get to build stronger relationships with 300+ bright minds as each day goes by. You can bet that no one day is like another in this unique, exhilarating and rewarding environment.
Whenever I introduce myself to my fellow classmates here, the most common response I hear is “you were made for INSEAD!” While I’d believed this myself when I was applying, it’s reassuring to hear it from the Admissions Committee when I was accepted and again from my classmates now that orientation is kicking off!
There is this point in time: right before the program commences and just after you have been issued your visa, or made your housing deposit, or whatever the last item on your to-do list of pre-INSEAD preparation may be. It is like the scene at the beginning of Saving Private Ryan – troops lined up on the landing ships, the air tense with anticipation for what will surely be a fierce battle; odds are the man next to you will never make it home. I exaggerate of course, but the point remains that there might be this lull in the frenetic energy that has surrounded you up to that point.
What are the classes going to be like? What kind of experience will it be to meet and make friends with people from so many different countries all over the world? Am I going to stay on top of everything? Questions like these are running through my head as the fact that INSEAD is only a couple of days away is sinking in. As that’s going on, I’d like to use this post to introduce myself and what led me to forgo my comfy life in the UK and to turn up instead in a small French town surrounded by forest from almost all sides.
Finding the right MBA programme is like finding the family that speaks your language. They may not look or talk like you, but you feel “at home” because they understand and value you. I knew that INSEAD was the only school that speaks my “language” i.e. could decode my resume and understand who I am.
Poll results from an INSEAD Class of December 2017 survey claim that 89% of my classmates are “career changers” which means that the vast majority of my classmates intend to move into a new function, industry, or country after we graduate from business school. Even if these results may be inflated, a large proportion of our class has indicated their desire to reinvent themselves from a career perspective. I am one of the 89% and here’s my story.
Hello everybody! Here comes a quick review of my four motivations to do an MBA at this point in my life. First, as with lots of my peers, I share what I believe are two of the most common drivers of MBA applicants: the need to change and the will to accelerate one's career.
Had someone told me before the start of the programme that some of my greatest learnings from INSEAD would be during P4-5 (when the academics is almost over), I would have laughed in their face. However, it turned out to be true! Every day, talking to employers and “trying on” a certain role in an organisation, I reflect on my motivations, past experiences and plans for the future. A year ago I thought I’d just get a very nice international degree, will learn some basic business subjects and will ultimately be able to read The Financial Times without a dictionary.