Vinodh Venkatraman

Country of origin: India

IT & Digital Strategy Consultant, Gartner

I chose Lancaster MBA because of its strong course structure with its focus on consulting and because of the impressive perspectives that alumni gave whilst I was researching different MBA programmes in UK.

Lancaster MBA's strong ranking on ‘value for money’ was the first criterion for me when deciding which MBA programme to join. Also, having lived and worked in UK for a few years before the MBA, I was looking for a university that was different from London’s metro culture, one with a real British flavour and an environment where I would feel at home.

So what is a typical day in Lancaster like? That is hard to say, and that, I believe, is what makes the programme unique.  Each day is different and offers different challenges. For example, you could be working on a real-time consulting project whilst taking core programme modules and preparing for an inter-university competition.

The programme has plenty to offer not just academically but also in terms of experience  – and you should have an open mind and eagerness  to participate and contribute. Your success will depend on how good you are at managing your time and how much you appreciate the importance of being a good team member, irrespective of your pre-MBA experience.

One thing that I really liked about the programme is the diversity, not just only among the students but also among the professors leading the various modules.

The strategy module, for example, was led by of three of the UK’s leading scholars. They challenged each other’s opinions in front of the students until they reached a conclusion they agreed upon. This gave us exposure to how strategy is shaped in a real business situation and why being mindful of other people’s perspectives is so importance in business. This way of thinking helped us as students during our team projects and allowed us to reach the best possible outcomes for the clients we worked with. No wonder the Lancaster MBA was ranked in the top five MBAs for corporate strategy by the FT in 2014.

Apart from the academic aspects, I enjoyed Lancaster’s beautiful campus that provides the environment needed to maintain a healthy and fresh mentality during this academically rigorous one-year programme.

As a proud alumnus of the Lancaster MBA, I would recommend this programme to any aspiring MBA students. In my opinion, there are two main things to consider. First are the course modules. You really want to learn something that will help you to be successful in jobs post-MBA. Lancaster MBA’s three different client consulting modules, interspersed with core modules, give you an immediate opportunity to see the practical relevance of your MBA.

The second thing is the importance that the programme gives to your career development. The impressive career advancement programme (CAP) makes sure that you are mentored properly and are prepared to seize opportunities when they arise. The CAP team also make sure the students are connected to the extensive and active alumni network and that they get the required support.

After graduation, I joined a leading consulting firm in UK. The confidence I had gained was evident to me during my job search and during conversations with senior leaders of organisations. This programme has developed me as a pragmatic person.  I am not afraid of failures – instead I have started to appreciate the importance of learning from them. This would not have been possible without the Lancaster MBA experience, and I really glad that I chose the right university to shape the most important stage of my career.