Why did you decide to do an Executive MBA?
As an executive in Financial Services I was fortunate that I had access to and attended many training programs and was eager and appreciative of having such an opportunity to learn and grow, however I felt that lacked real academic credentials. I had not finished my undergraduate degree and although I had been relatively successful at climbing the leadership ranks, I felt that I had gone as high as I could go without an MBA-level education. I also lacked confidence about my level of Business Acumen and felt I had inadequate structure in my thinking and questioning than I believed was needed in today's challenging business environment. I felt somewhat exposed being surrounded by so many qualified peers that I needed to "catch up" and gain a deeper understanding of the business options available to make better decisions and lead more confidently.
Why did you choose Ivey?
I compared what Ivey had to offer versus other EMBA programs. I procrastinated for many years but when I was ready and my children were focused on their own university lives, I attended an Ivey information session. I preferred the 4-days in class per month and the overall scheduling of Ivey's EMBA program. I preferred having personal connections and the interaction of being with other students in class compared to video conferencing and internet. I was intrigued by the case methodology and the multiple levels of learning it promised, which I found to be true. I was also very impressed with the facilities and the calibre of professors and students. The international trip to China was also a huge draw for me as I was keenly interested in how China was becoming a strong global player.
What benefits have you seen so far in your career?
First, I must say the journey through Ivey's EMBA definitely pushed me farther, in every way (academically, emotionally and physically, than I had believed I could stretch myself. The amazing friendships and perspectives gained from classmates enriched the learning experience well beyond my expectations. After living through and gaining such deep perspectives and learnings from the 220 cases we studied, I no longer struggle with my fears of inadequacy and am confident I can tackle any business challenge. I can now read the business section of a newspaper and understand it! I no longer feel constrained to one industry from a career perspective and I now find global events and economics much more interesting and can share my perspectives confidently with others. I feel comfortable applying for more senior roles and I see no reason why I cannot become the CEO! There's no longer a ceiling except for what I set for myself.