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Chike Gardiner

EMBA 2012, Ivey Business School

Profile

Senior Consultant - Banking and Financial Services
Cognizant Technology Solutions

Why did you decide to do an Executive MBA?

While working at a leading Canadian IT consulting company as a program manager I realized that being promoted into a senior management role would require me to manage strategy, marketing and operation functions. This gave me the desire to increase my intellectual property and expand my scope of the business world. When I finally got the courage to apply to graduate school my concern was not about the monetary return or the personal financial investment I would be making. Instead I was seeking a clearer understanding of the leadership/management psyche and not limiting myself to project management.

I always had confidence in my ambitions, commitment, people and leadership skills; however, I recognized that I needed further develop my organizational behavior and communication tone. So, I applied to the best Canadian institute that would help transform me into a polished global business leader, and that was Ivey.

Why did you choose Ivey?

Ivey is a world renowned institution that is known for sculpting an elite group of business men and women. It's known that students in the Ivey classrooms are a representation of diverse business disciplines, which assist in the tackling of challenging case studies. I chose Ivey's EMBA program to help redefine how I thought, worked, and played. I wanted an institution that transformed me into a successful leader in the new global management environment. In attending Ivey I knew I would be provided with a thorough understanding of global business, and be provided with the skill set to solve any business problem. By adding this knowledge to my repertoire of skills I could attain one of my goals of working internationally. This was the experience I needed to help develop a disciplined method of approaching business issues.

What benefits have you seen so far in your career?

Since the completion of Ivey's EMBA program I have moved companies and countries accepting a business consulting role at a global IT consulting firm in the United States. My thinking post EMBA has evolved allowing me to view everything from a global leadership and strategic perspective.

I am forever changed both professionally and personally. The ethical perspective of the program had a tremendous impact on how I view problems, separate emotions, and identify a solution. I was able to finally break the mold of being a project manager. Now, on a day-to day basis I am involved in new leads to business development opportunities, working with clients, and being accountable for the full life cycle of an engagement. Ivey prepared me to lead cross-functional teams through complex business situations. I now understand the importance of all business functions and what is required to be successful. Ivey is success' road map.