Jezebel Khoo spent a semester at Les Roches as an MBA student and takes home to Singapore some valuable lessons.
It’s finally time to go home after spending one semester on the MBA program with Les Roches. The past few months have been a truly enriching time spent and I am excited to share with everyone my experiences and learning so far.
The MBA program is very different from the lectures I used to have in my bachelor programme back in Singapore. Rather than having a fixed schedule, we are subjected to changing weekly schedules.
One of the aims of Les Roches MBA program is to allow the students to get as much exposure as possible and hence the inclusion of professionals from the industry to coach us on certain modules. In the MBA semester I program, we have three visiting lecturers covering topics from Trends and Strategic Operations, to Leadership.
With a changing schedule, it means that it’s hard for us to plan “holidays” ahead. However, in a good way, it really forces us to learn to manage our time wisely and be flexible and adaptable to the changing environment. One piece of advice to prospective students:
get ready to learn that “change is the only constant in the MBA programme.
Rather than just learning from the slides, our assignments and projects are based on case studies, interviews and lots of class interaction.
I particularly liked the leadership module, which exposed me not only to leadership skills but at the same time made me think a lot about myself, who I want to be, how I go about doing it and whether I can develop myself into an effective leader.
I remembered that in our first class, Professor Mayne said: “leadership cannot be taught” and throughout the semester, I began to understand that leadership can only be learnt through experiences.
I also learnt that
your best teacher is the mistakes you make in life.
I thought a lot about my previous career, and have asked myself many times if I were given a chance again, what would I change and how could I make things better in a team. I reflect on my past behavior and whenever I am faced with a difficult situation now, I always ask myself why certain people behave in this way. Is it because of culture differences? The way we are brought up? What we have been taught? And each time, I find myself being more able to understand people and in a way, become able to make sense of their action and behaviour. In short, I have learnt to “always put yourself in the shoes of others”.
The best thing I experienced in the module is having a great team to work with. Have you ever been in a group project which you get really annoyed and frustrated? Is someone always taking the lead and the rest are just followers? While it might happen a lot of times, I am really fortunate to have been able to work with wonderful people who have made the whole process so enriching and enjoyable.
The group is formed based on “Belbin Roles” which signifies that a successful team should be formed of people who have different roles. My team reflected at the end of the project whether the roles had changed within the team and we openly joke and feedback to each other.
I love the transparency and openness of my team! While we understand that grades are important, we feel that the process of getting the task done is much more important because these are memories and lessons that stick with us for life.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a good summer and see you back in school soon!