Reflections of an NUS MBA Globetrotter

It’s been just over two months since I came to Yale from NUS to complete the NUS Masters Double-degree programme with Yale School of Management, but it sure feels like a life time when I think about the experiences and memories I’ve gained.

I’ve been fortunate to travel from China to Singapore, and then to the United States, in pursuit of knowledge and meaningful experiences. I chose NUS MBA because of the diversity of students, global experiences that are part of the NUS MBA programme, Singapore’s strategic location and the dynamic format of the MBA programme.

 

Yale MAM

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Lean In, Asia: Women in Leadership in Asia

A recent survey by the Institute of Policy Studies in Singapore to measure attitudes of Singaporeans towards mandatory National Service (NS) showed that one woman in 10 is willing to volunteer for NS two years for National Service. The survey sparked some discussion about whether the playing field should be levelled and if women need to serve in the armed forces.

The news brought to the surface the issue of gender inequality and in a broader context, the relatively low rates of female representation at the top levels of business in Asia. Reports such as McKinsey’s Women Matter or the report (study) by our very own Centre for Governance, Institutions and Organisations (CGIO) report indicate that gender diversity is not a business imperative for many Asian companies today.

We spoke to Chung Yuen Kay, Adjunct Associate Professor at NUS Business School, who is also one of the instructors in our Women in Leadership Executive Education programme, to get her insights into issues related to women and leadership

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“Things I Didn’t Learn at Business School”

Richard Howard, the President & CEO of Daimler Financial Services Asia Pacific and Africa, recently visited the School to share leadership lessons to create a winning culture across different cultural environments, as a part of Leadership Dialogue Series.

Daimler Financial Services (DFS) is a global  financial service provider of a comprehensive range of automobile-related financial services. Richard, originally from England and a father of four, has worked with Daimler for over 18 years and has led global teams. He got his MBA from Aston University, UK, and has a BA (Honours) in Business Studies from the University of Central England, UK.

Given his breadth and depth of experience, his insights were valuable to all of us. In particular,  his words of wisdom about what he did not learn in a business school, were inspiring. We couldn’t resist sharing it with you; so here are the excerpts of his talk: Continue reading

Should you do an MBA in Asia?

Weakness in the US and European economies has given rise to new trends in business education. According to the latest MBA Applicant Report from Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) and a recent Business Week article, MBA applicants are increasingly targeting b-schools in stronger economies. Brighter job prospects in Asia are also drawing more international MBAs from the West. With these changes afoot, the need for an international MBA to increase competitiveness in a global marketplace has never been more compelling.

So what do these emerging trends in a shrinking world mean to you, an MBA aspirant from the West? We sat down with an American student Brian Atlee, an NUS MBA alumni (2012), to find some answers as to why he chose to travel half the world to do his MBA in Asia.

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Top 5 Job-Search Tips After Graduation

A guest post from Jonathan Kwan, an external career consultant to NUS Business School & an expert career coach:

If you have finished your MBA or undergraduate degree and haven’t yet secured a job, there’s probably a good reason for that. You were focused on your studies and getting good grades.  You were leading a club and wanted the handover to your juniors to be smooth.  Or you were just having too good of a time and never wanted to leave…Right?

Unfortunately, all good things must come to an end.  And the reality is that you may have simply been too picky during campus recruiting, didn’t know what you wanted, or weren’t as focused as your peers in the job search process.  So, here are a few tips to get you going.

1. Know What You Want

There are many people you will meet along the way that genuinely would love to help you, but if you simply “just want a job, any job”, you’re not making it easy for them.  Having a specific goal in mind, or even a few options, and being able to articulate why (i.e. your motivation), are extremely important steps in the job search process.  Not only will friends, family and acquaintance be better equipped to point you in the right direction, when you do meet someone in your target field, you will be able to make a great first impression. Continue reading

How to Train a Business Leader

We recently organised Management Communication (MC) Camp for the NUS MBA students to help them become effective leaders. As promised, below is a first-hand account of one of the participants:

Readers of this blog will have read earlier in What You Wish You Were Taught in MBA blog post that the School ran before the inaugural Management Communication (or MC) camp from 29 July to 3 August.

As ever-effervescent faculty leader Huijin Kong told me before the camp kicked off, the week was an intensive ‘trial by fire’ in order to instill quickly in new MBA students “the right skills, mindsets, personalities and qualities” to be catapulted onto the C-suite track most are aiming for. Since being an effective leader is only 20 percent knowledge, with the 80 percent lying in how one influences, this will put the new MBAs into the right frame of mind before they launch into their programme. Continue reading

What You Wish You Were Taught in MBA

Consider this scenario:  You’re a final year MBA student attending an important networking session organized by potential recruiters from a company you’re aspiring to join soon. You prepare yourself, carry your business cards, dress your best and attend the networking session only to find out that there are over 50 other peers at the event who are also vying for the same two minutes of face-time with the recruiters and eventually the job you are aspiring for. How do you make a lasting impression on the recruiter when it’s your turn?

Sounds familiar?  Haven’t we all gone through these kinds of social, critical moments when we don’t know what to do? Those awkward pauses in business conversations when we wished we had said something? Or those countless business meetings or lunches when we missed an opportunity to make our points effectively and regretted later?

This is the kind of stuff that most MBA programmes don’t teach us – and we’re being told that either we know it or we don’t –or we cannot learn it.  Known as management communications, it is the communications skill that is linked to almost all outcomes we desire from an MBA degree – getting that first job, making an impact in a new job, influencing negotiations, becoming an influential leader and achieving our goals. Yet, how many of the top global MBA programmes have management communications as a part of core curriculum? Continue reading

Meet the very first graduate of the NUS MBA Double Degree with Yale University

It is not every day that you get to be the very first graduate of a new program – that is truly one milestone graduation!

michael tiopanMeet Michael Tiopan, the first graduate from the Yale University School of Management (SOM) Master of Advanced Management (MAM). This programme is the latest addition to NUS Business School’s suite of Double Degree programs.

Michael completed his MBA from NUS Business School, and MAM from Yale University School of Management. He is the first graduate representing NUS Business School, among the Yale MAM graduates.

What is so unique about this program and why did Michael enroll in it? We sat down with him to find out this and more. Below are some excerpts of the interview: Continue reading

Reflections about Commencement 2013

Our Director of Graduate Studies and the NUS-Peking University Double-degree MBA alumni Chua-Nan Sze, Marie Antonie, shares her reflections about Commencement 2013:

Commencement 2013 is just round the corner and it entails a busy and exciting time for all of us at the School. It is, after all, that one time of the year when we all come together, to celebrate the achievements of our students, the support that their families have provided to them and the memories we create together to help our students attain an important milestone of their lives.

The graduating class of 2013 will remain a very special cohort in my life – the first official cohort I welcomed & saw through as Director of the NUS MBA program. I will remember most of the students fondly when I will look through the memories captured in the annual student Yearbook many years later and I look forward to receiving updates about the exciting happenings in these students’ lives through Facebook & LinkedIn.

 

Commencement2013

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