So I’m going to Stanford!

A couple of weeks ago I received a pretty awesome phone call. It was the admissions committee from Stanford Graduate School of Business, I had been accepted into their full-time MBA programme (Class of 2015).

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A common question I am asked is, why are you doing an MBA? My reasoning is based on three aspects:

  1. Accelerated learning (experience & education) for a non-business individual versus continuation of existing employment. Whilst I could accumulate the skills in #2 through experience, the MBA provides an accelerated route to get me up to speed. Additionally, I believe it will enable me to make a bigger impact and increase my chances of success than if otherwise.
  2. I had a specific need for knowledge/education around learning how to transform a SME into a global businesses and bringing technology products to market . The MBA provides such education and experience.
  3. The ecosystem, the exposure and the access. Stanford is a one of a kind institution. Its seamless integration with the world’s tech epicentre is unparalleled. Because of this I will have access to some of most influential people, and invaluable resources and  opportunities than I could ever get by myself.

Following on from this, so why Stanford?

  • The learning – The type of courses and experiences offered at the GSB fit my requirements and the option to explore topics of true interest beyond the walls of the GSB is also appealing (e.g The Design School, The Biodesign Programme).
  • The people – It is my belief that those in the Stanford MBA programme are different to those in other MBA programmes. Stanford is more interested in individuals that want to create change, not climb corporate ladders. Therefore you can expect the class to be full of interesting individuals who are doers and have already done some pretty impressive things in their careers to date.
  • The ecosystem –Refer to #3. In addition the Stanford Alumni is a highly connected and invaluable resource that will continue to be an asset beyond my schooling years.

So what’s next? At the moment I’m going through all the “admin” bits and pieces i.e. visas, housing, finances.  Classes don’t start till September so I still have a bit of time up my sleeve. So much so that the fact that I’m moving to the USA and that I’m actually going to be going to Stanford has yet to sink in.

Regarding classes, the first year is pretty much scripted. However, in my second year I intend to focus my studies and experiences around:

  • Entrepreneurship, innovation & venture capital specifically around new technology ventures
  • Global Business with an emphasis on Asia business
  • Management of company growth
  • Marketing & launching new technology products.

That’s all for now. I hope to keep you updated as my Stanford journey progresses. It is certainly going to be a year of big changes.

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graeme@graemefielder.com

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