Monday, November 22, 2010

Kelley Direct 2nd In-Residence

I attended my second Kelley Direct in-residence in August. It was great to be back on the beautiful Indiana University campus in Bloomington. The in-residence experiences are an important part of the distance MBA program experience because it allows us to interact with our professors and fellow students face to face.

It was fun to see some of my friends from the first in-residence. The last time we were together, we were new to the program. Now we are seasoned veterans.

The professors are all excellent. Our focus each day was on a specific topic related to managing human resources. Here I am with each of the professors. Above from top left:

  • Tatiana Kolovou: Communicating in the Workplace

  • Idalene Kesner: Linking Your HR Strategy to Your Firm’s Corporate & Business Strategy

  • John Wisneski: Maximizing the Value of Consultants

  • Sheri Fella: Managing Human Resources in a Global Environment

  • Steve Whiting: Human Resource Selection

We were assigned a team with whom we worked all week. It’s always fun to work with different people and learn from their diverse backgrounds and experiences.

The highlight of the week for me was the discussion on linking our HR strategy to our firm’s business strategy. We had to analyze a case write up about Intradevco, a Peruvian consumer products company. The lecture was led by Professor Kesner, who wrote the case and is an excellent teacher.

After our class discussion on the case, Professor Kesner introduced Luciano Arosemena, whose father runs Intradevco. Luciano had worked at Intradevco and helped Professor Kesner write the case. Hearing him give a first-hand account of how the company dealt with the challenges in the case took the analysis to a whole new level.

The first in-residence week was pretty intense. We didn't have a lot of free time for socializing. They gave us more time to network at the 2nd in-residence. We got to enjoy fine cuisine from some of the local restaurants, view priceless works of art at the art museum, and unwind at Nick's.

It was a great week. The next time I'll be in Bloomington will be for my graduation next year.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

KD-powered career upgrade

It didn't occur to me as it was going on, but in hindsight it's startling how KD's resources propelled me all the way through a career change I would've never thought possible prior to entering the program: 1. Got a great education through the Kelley Direct program. I had no intention to change careers when I began my studies, but as I developed more strategic sensibilities it occurred to me that my job may not be taking me where I wanted to go. 2. Used the IUAA's career services resources for introspective self-assessments and exploratory research into new careers and industries. 3. Took advantage of the complimentary “career strategy tune-up” when Kelley Graduate Career Services was swinging through my town to get constructive input, update my resume and craft a plan. 4. A week after I completed my studies, I saw an intriguing job opportunity on Kelley’s MBA Focus job board. 5. Leveraged the alumni network to connect with the target company. I also utilized IUAA career services' online resources for interview prep & negotiation advice. 6. 3 months later, I’m starting my dream job - and with a 40% salary increase! Thank you, KD!

Name: Jake Tamarkin
City: Brooklyn
State: NY

Monday, November 15, 2010

The True Power of a Kelley MBA

What’s up KD!! I hope that this blog finds you well. Life is super hectic right now with work and school, so this blog is a welcome mind relief.

This month’s blog is going to be a little different than normal. I had a great experience recently that taught me the true power and prestige of a Kelley MBA, so I figured that I would share, especially for those of you who are thinking about joining the KD program.

As a point of honesty, I should admit, I have never really been about rankings. I do not understand them. I know they are important, but for me, it has never really been that important. And while my sister went to an Ivy League university, I still never really got what it meant to be at a prestigious institution. I blame this on being an engineer at heart. It might not be an accurate place to lay blame, but it works for me. I have always been more interested in how, how well, and if something worked, more than what is looked like while it worked. Therefore, when it comes to rankings, I had always thought that as long as I went to a moderately respected institution, it would be fine. Well, at least I did until last Friday.

I have recently decided to pursue a Ph.D in Marketing. This is in large part due to my experience in the KD program, and the awesome experience that I had in Dr. Sexton’s Strategic Marketing Management class. I happen to work at an institution that grants Ph.Ds in Marketing, and my current institution provides free tuition for employees as a benefit. After doing a little preliminary research, I was strongly interested in the Ph.D program here, especially since you can go part time, which is not always allowed in Ph.D programs across the country.

This leads us to my life changing meeting this past Friday. I met with the Ph.D. admissions chair for the Marketing department to get more information on the program. During a great meeting, I shared that I was working to finish my MBA at the Kelley School of Business, and the complete direction of the conversation changed. The professor began to recruiting me to join the program, potentially for this coming fall, assuming I am able to finish my MBA by then. After walking into the conversation hoping to be admitted, I walked out of his office believing that due to the strength of my Kelley MBA, I would potentially able to start a Ph.D. program much earlier than ever imagined.

So, for those of you who were like me, and questioned what it meant to be “Kelley Kid”, or what the prestige of the program really meant, I hope this story helps you understand – there is some influence in this Kelley brand. And for those of you potential students who are reading this blog, and questioning if the prestige is real – take it from me – it’s real. And it has the potential to change your career and your life.

Well, I hope that’s helpful KD! Until next time, I’ll catch you later.