When I first arrived, I was unsure what I would actually take away from my MBA experience. Sure, I knew I would be studying a bunch of subjects but, as I had quickly realized after my previous university degree, contents of classes could be fast forgotten.
A few months into my MBA, I begin to understand how this year will durably influence me. I have not changed my mind on one thing – I have already forgotten some of the financial accounting principles learnt a few months back. However, I am beginning to make sense of the functioning of a company as a whole (I used to work on the financial markets – so while I could pretend to know a bit about derivatives, I knew little if nothing about how a business actually is organized). After accounting, strategy, marketing, operations, and about a hundred cases spanning all sectors, I find myself increasingly finding links between the different subjects, making cross-references, and challenging my way of thinking every day further.
However, I am starting to realize that I am learning a lot of other things as well. Going back to school after having been inmersed a number of years in the professional environment can be tough at the start. Putting yourself in the mindset of a student once more may be surprisingly quick, but the nagging absence of a salary, and the uncertainty of finding a good job after the MBA are always present.
I started the MBA with a good idea of what I wanted to do. Or so I thought. Three months on, I was not sure of anything anymore. My experience so far has been filled with fun and new experiences, but in many ways it has also been very unsettling. Leaving my comfort zone, my environment, meeting people with very different backgrounds from mine has made me question many aspects of my life, as well as many of my assumptions about what I liked, what I was good at and where I wanted to go. I don’t have all the answers yet, but I can say my MBA experience has helped me realize just how many opportunities and paths actually exist out there. Luckily, I still have a lot of months to find the rest of the answers.