Country of origin: United Kingdom
Managing Director, TASS Inc
I am a chartered engineer with 12 years’ work experience within airlines, the last five of which have been in middle management roles within British Airways and Air New Zealand, where I provided specialist engineering technical services to support the operating and maintenance of large fleets of aircraft.
In my previous roles I had extensive exposure to working with senior managers, developed business plans, managed budgets, worked closely with HR staff and managed large projects. These experiences had helped my development, but I realised that there were many aspects of business and management, such as finance and strategy, that I needed to learn more about.
I heard about the Lancaster MBA from a LUMS Executive MBA alumnus whom I was working with, who advised me to visit the University. Upon visiting, I was warmly welcomed by the Lancaster staff, shown the excellent facilities and quickly determined that the Lancaster MBA met all my needs for career development. That it was a campus university and had everything I needed close to me was an additional bonus, as was the cost.
The core modules that I studied on the Lancaster MBA helped me develop a basic understanding of business subjects. I was then able to reflect on how the learning from these modules related to my previous work experience and share these insights with the class, whilst also learning from other people’s experience, which proved very beneficial.
The real strength of the Lancaster MBA, however, is that the learning from the core modules can be put into practice through the New Venture Challenge, Consultancy Challenge and the summer project and dissertation. These consulting projects proved invaluable as they enabled me to apply my new-found knowledge and skills to real business situations, with real clients.
The Lancaster MBA was certainly a challenge. The end of the first term tested my resolve in balancing commitments to the personal assignments and managing group projects, whilst keeping an eye on the deliverables. It was at these times, however, that the relationship with other students came to the fore. The cultural diversity of the class meant that students had to learn how to work with colleagues from differing backgrounds, but this actually drew on the strengths of the individuals, and I experienced a collective 'togetherness' which helped students through the hardest moments.
Outside of the busy times we were able to enjoy these new relationships in learning about new cultures, playing sport and networking, where the Lancaster MBA gave us ample opportunity to meet external visitors from industry and to learn a second side to business through developing social skills.
The Lancaster MBA certainly enabled my development and I was delighted with the high quality of the programme. The knowledge and experience I gained on the MBA will be a great asset, which I will be able to utilise throughout my future career. In fact, the Lancaster MBA is already influencing my career development, helping me to establish a UK-based subsidiary for a US firm whom I had worked with previously and for whom I did my dissertation project.
At the start of the MBA, I never thought that I would be an entrepreneur, but the MBA has put me in good stead to take on this challenge in testing times.