Reflections of a MBA

Michael Kromwyk MBA
Michael Kromwyk MBA

This week I graduated from the University of South Australia with a Master of Business Administration (MBA). It was a wonderful experience to attend the ceremony and to reflect on nearly 3 years of sacrifice and hard work to achieve this degree.

Afterwards I was celebrating the achievement at lunch with some colleagues when my manager asked me what I considered the benefit of the MBA to me personally. This was a great question as I had spent the better part of four hours in the auditorium considering this!

When I started my MBA journey I thought that I was a good sales manager that cared for his people and always achieved the sales result that the organisation needed. What I didn’t see, but my manager did, was that while I was very good at my job I didn’t work well cross functional, had limited vision and only short timeframe strategies and that my personal brand was low. For a sales manager without aspirations I was ideal for the role, but if I wanted to advance then I need to become more aware through emotional intelligence and to start thinking more strategically about where the organisation wanted to be, not just about my team.

So I was encouraged to start an MBA.

In one of my courses I was asked to complete a reflective journal as a part of my assessment. To commence I set myself some goals, that were really my goals for the degree. They were:

Develop collaboration – I wanted to increase my value to the organisation and that I have diplomacy skills to work cross functionally. This was recognised this year when I was required to manage a high level Board project & I have been able to work both cross functionally as well as being able to manage a peer group effectively. The demonstrated that I had changed due to the new knowledge that my degree gave me.

Team Player – During the course I was able to develop better situational leadership skills and adaptability. I learned how to ‘dance’ depending on the situation or the personality and this has helped to increase my internal brand at the organisation.

Communication – By using the tools learned in the MBA and reflective journals I have found that I have become more comfortable with both peers and Executives within the organisation. This year I worked on a project for the CEO and I feel comfortable discussing issues with him as I have become the ‘expert’. This has lead to another opportunity as a Strategic Advisor to another Board.

Consultancy Skills – I feel that I have become a consultant during the degree. Being a consultant isn’t necessarily about doing the work, but providing advice and linking the ‘client’ to the resources. I have really learned new skills in this area and once again it has helped me to grow my brand internally.

Interview for GM Role or lead a major Project – A personal goal for me has been to be recognised as having developed and being ready for the next step in my career. I can measure this by gaining an interview for a higher level position or leading a high profile project that shows that I have been recognised. In the past 3 months I have been interviewed for a higher role (I didn’t win one position, & declined another opportunity, but it did demonstrate that I have developed to be on the consideration set). I have also been leading a high-profile Board & CEO project since March and have commenced another on Franchising. I have also been appointed (in a part-time capacity) as the Strategic Advisor to an external Board. This is a great step forward for me and is almost, at times, like another MBA course as I continue to put into practise what I have learned during my Masters.

The MBA has been a part of my learning journey, but it cannot stop here. Learning should be life long and the MBA equips you for this. If you are considering a MBA make sure that you take the time to document the reasons why you are doing the degree, set some smart goals and some action items.

I think I may spend the next few days continuing my celebrations and reflecting on the result of all those late nights and early mornings!

Cheers Michael Kromwyk B.Th, MBA

More by this Author

  • Body Glove - A Budgeting Case Study

    During my MBA I had the opportunity to review a case study on the watersports brand Body Glove. Body Glove was founded by Bob and Bill Meistrell taught themselves to swim in rural USA before moving to Manhattan Beach...

  • Coopers Brewery - Adelaide SA

    Michael Kromwyk reviews the competitive strategy of Coopers Brewery located in Adelaide, Australia. Through the use of PESTLE, Porter 5 Forces and SWOT, Michael recommends a diversification plan including a move into...

  • ACER Competitive Strategy Review

    In this hub Michael Kromwyk provides some insight into the ACER competitive strategy and how it is positioned against other brands in the PC and peripherals market. Included in the paper are some university level models...


No comments yet.

    Sign in or sign up and post using a HubPages Network account.

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No HTML is allowed in comments, but URLs will be hyperlinked. Comments are not for promoting your articles or other sites.

    Click to Rate This Article