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Sonya King, AMBA '21, Director, Management Consulting; Business and Professional Services Senior Analyst at RSM Canada, on pursuing an MBA to accelerate career goals

As she contemplated the next step in her consulting career, Sonya King, AMBA '21, knew the best way to round out the skills she needed to move into senior leadership roles was to pursue an MBA.

“I felt like I was at that point in my career where I was ready to pursue a senior leadership role. I wanted to marry my years of consulting experience with academic guidance and credentials would set me apart when looking to grow in my career” says King, Director, Management Consulting; Business and Professional Services Senior Analyst at RSM Canada, a leading provider of audit, tax and consulting services focused on the middle market. 

For King, that distinction came in the form of her selection to RSM’s Industry Eminence Program, a prestigious, three-year assignment within her company that has her split her time between her current work and a new role as a senior analyst working to understand, forecast and communicate business, economic and technology trends shaping the industries RSM serves. 

She was one of 17 people chosen for the program out of RSM’s global workforce of 48,000 in 120 countries – and the only Canadian. She began that assignment in May 2021.

“This program is a unique opportunity that benefits both the firm and the individual, and can help differentiate yourself from your peers and gives you a lot of opportunity to create your own career path. It’s very highly sought after, prestigious program and it’s a pretty rigorous process to be selected,” King says.

“I do feel that I wouldn’t have been successful in that application process if it weren’t for my MBA – specifically the Global Economics course and the Advanced Data Analytics course, because that’s really going to be what I’m going to be living in, day in and day out, for the next few years.”

Courses on strategy and innovation helped King develop a baseline knowledge around how to think about, and prepare for, the next business disruption. The ways in which the current economic and business climate is changing, particularly with regards to automation, is one of the areas she’ll be analyzing closely in the Eminence Program.

“I’m going to be analysing economic trends and data in a specific industry and contributing to thought leadership, collateral for clients and just being able to be that go-to person for that specific industry,” King says.

“Being able to be at the forefront of that change, especially on the research side, is an amazing opportunity.” 

King also points to courses like Power and Politics and Impact and Influence as ones that helped her navigate the political landscape at RSM, build strategic relationships and tailor communications styles depending on the stakeholders to really resonate with them and make a bigger impact. 

Having to work through problems on her own during the MBA program, to think deeper and come to her own conclusions also made King a better critical and strategic thinker.

“You take your MBA at Ivey because they’re the best of the best and you want to differentiate yourself in the market,” King says.

“As a consultant, when you’re introducing yourself to clients and you want to credentialize yourself, if you say, ‘I have an MBA from Ivey,’ it means something. The clients and the executives take notice, and it just builds instant credibility.”

AMBA '21

Ivey Business School

Sonya King

Sonya King

Director, Management Consulting; Business and Professional Services Senior Analyst, RSM Canada

Toronto, Canada

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