Country Of Origin: Japan
Degree: Full-time MBA, 2019
Project Manager, Amazon
What did you do prior to joining the MBA?
I was working on the technical side of things as a project manager with Toshiba. My experience spanned a wide range of tasks, from implementing technical proposals to the management of projects related to supplying high-voltage equipment in the power systems for power utilities.
Why did you decide to do an MBA?
During my highly technical work, I felt unequipped to cope with some managerial difficulties. I often encountered complex dilemmas in multinational projects and recognised that I needed to establish the foundation for my judgement and cross-cultural leadership. These experiences, as well as my inclination for adventure and seeking new things, convinced me to pursue an MBA that also would help me broaden my business knowledge and skillset for transforming my career.
Why did you choose Lancaster University?
In the process of selecting a business school, I recognised that Lancaster’s Mindful Manager module best fitted my purpose. This module guided me through a process of reflection on my past conduct and allowed me to explore myself while immersing me in a diversity of culture and professional experiences that my colleagues of 21 nationalities brought to the classroom.
Moreover, the practical orientation of the whole programme was a big attraction for me, so that I could implement my learning from the classroom directly into the actual business world by taking up a variety of consulting projects from start-up to corporate level companies in the UK.
What did you enjoy most about the Lancaster MBA?
Among the modules that I took, Strategic Management was the most challenging and rewarding for me. The intensive and student-led course structure along with professors expecting executive-level holistic thinking of us initially overwhelmed me, but the learning that I acquired from a live case study with the assigned company was enriched by presenting our analysis and recommendations for the company to the professors and exchanging ideas and feedback with them every day.
Besides the programme itself, I took advantage of the peaceful countryside atmosphere in the North West of England where beautiful nature and animals – especially ducks on campus - refreshed my mind after all the hard work.
How do you think the Lancaster MBA benefitted you?
Undoubtedly one of Lancaster’s competitive advantages is the richness of the strategy module, including four related elective modules. Thanks to the action-based learning from them, my thinking has changed in a way that always looks at the big picture of how a company should think and act with its strategy while leveraging knowledge such as Marketing, Finance, and Operations.
In addition to the basic curriculum, the Lancaster MBA gave me opportunities to grow. I gained increasing confidence through being appointed as a student representative of the MBA board, as well as one of eight students who participated in a leadership development program led by Kevin Roberts, former CEO of Saatchi & Saatchi. Finally, with its great professors, supportive career services and accessible alumni network, I was able to land in my desired career after the MBA.
What do you need to consider before applying?
For prospective students looking to apply for the MBA, I would recommend getting a full understanding of what advantage you can take from the programme in order to achieve your future ambition. In this process, staff and alumni are keen to help you and happy to share what’s happening during your life-changing period. Whatever field you’re aiming for, I’m sure that this programme will positively impact your personal development and future career.
What is your next step now you have completed your Lancaster MBA?
I’m currently working as a project manager at Amazon, where I have been planning and executing the launch of fulfillment centers and other capacity expansion initiatives in Japan, while leading a multi-functional project team from Supply Chain, Finance, Procurement, and Engineering. The journey at Lancaster was fruitful and phenomenal in my life and dramatically shifted my future direction. I will continue to strive to be my desired leader by leveraging and cultivating the rich learning from the year.