Just Your Average Week

Let me take a moment, amidst everything that has been going on, to share with you the fabulous week I’ve had. It really captures the essence of what this full time MBA is all about: a wealth of opportunities, knowledge and perspectives, to enrich our learning.

As the second term comes to an end, Warwick’s FTMBA cohort can be seen fluttering around, in a desperate attempt to ‘perfect’ that final presentation, get knee-deep into revision or a head start on those assignments. But the world around us doesn’t stop for us, and we wouldn’t have it any other way.

This last week is a testament to just that.

THURSDAY 5th MARCH

Warwick Women’s Professional Network presents International Women’s Day

The week kicks off for me on a Thursday morning, as I board the train to London Euston with my colleagues (and most importantly, friends!) Chaarvi, Nivedita and Grace. After a lovely day out in the city (despite the UK weather…), we head over to the 17th floor of the Shard for Warwick Women’s Professional Network’s very special International Women’s Day event, to discuss the evolution of women in the workplace!

Our inspiring panelists comprised of Warwick Alumni from each decade (from 1970s to 2010s). From left, Linda Triangolo (Assistant Relationship Manager, WBS), Victoria Azubuike (Founder of The Us Programme/ Account Executive at BBH Group), Suvi Chi (Founder and Chief Executive at Koa Collective), Marina Antoniou (Banking Consultant), Ruth Powell (Apple Business Development, Healthcare, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Sales & Client Relationship Manager), Joan MacNaughton CB (Chair of The Climate Group and of the Advisory Board of the New Energy Coalition of Europe) and our moderator, Yulia Chekunaeva (Director, Capital Markets, En+ Group / Chair of Warwick Women’s Professional Network Committee).

And as you can see, the turnout was fabulous! What a great opportunity to hear from, and speak to, women across all professional backgrounds and experiences. In particular, we discussed topics like, ‘discrimination faced in the workplace, and the changes over the decades’, ‘opportunities for women in male dominated areas’, ‘female leadership and what that means in todays world’, and also very interestingly, touched on ‘financing, pensions and investment strategies’. I know that the FTMBA cohort (featured above) hope that we continue to hear from professional experts on these very relevant and current topics!

FRIDAY & SATURDAY 6th/7th MARCH

Finalising the panel for WBS FTMBA’s very first cohort debate

The idea of “encouraging conversations that aren’t comfortable” has lead us to organise our very first class debate.

And, just like that, we started to build the foundations for something very special – which started off as a conversation over a glass of wine. It has now become so big, with so many efforts simultaneously going on – that we will soon look to formalise it, so that cohorts after us have a foundation of knowledge to build on!

The debate organising committee, includes my colleagues Ruchi SankritNivedita VaidyaKarabo MothapoGrace Farias and myself. We are delighted to be able to feature a balanced gender panel, with 10 diverse backgrounds and identities. I am sure that debaters ChaarviPedroTsitsiJamieOlgaRobBiancaRankopaPriscilla and Pushpam are all looking forward to a fiery debate on: “Should diversity and inclusion be legislated or left to organisations to do at their own will?”

MONDAY 9th MARCH

Celebrating International Women’s Day at WBS, over a gripping discussion with my female colleagues: “Risk Taking for Women in Job Applications”

Another effort that came to life on Monday evening was our very first women’s coaching session, in celebration of International Women’s Day, kindly facilitated by our fantastic Careers Plus & Corporate Relations team director, Sue Thorn. We also thank Monica and Catherine for joining us and sharing their expertise.

The organising committee, Chaarvi ChiduruppaOlga UsachevaBianca MachadoGrace Farias and myself, were thrilled with the interest and turnout! The trajectory of the conversation led us to covering the following points:

  • Why we should be applying to roles that match only 60%-80%
  • How to sell yourself in an application without sounding arrogant or over-confident
  • The (not-so) subtle art of negotiation
  • Pre-application tips to stand out
  • What should you take away from a rejection
  • Along with ‘doing’, start ‘envisioning’

I don’t know how we managed to cover this breadth in only an hour, but I can tell you what I do know: We could have gone on for at least a couple more!

(PS: And incase you thought you’d spotted a baby in the previous picture – you’re not wrong! We had a very special guest of honour. Ladies (and gents), we’ve got to do what we can for our amazing working/studying mums!)

TUESDAY 10th MARCH

“MBA Careers Festival” at WBS

Organised by our fantastic Careers Team, this evening event saw 4 workshops take place covering: Elevator pitches by Caroline Egan, Negotiation Skills by Sue Thorn, Career Transitions by Sarah Jackson and Interview Skills by Hilary Riseley.

Having had some of the other workshops delivered previously, the Negotiation Skills workshop was completely new to me, so I enjoyed this one thoroughly. I genuinely think the tips I have learnt from this workshop will help me create a win-win situation for both myself and my employer!

Did you know, that only 30% of us try to negotiate job offers? 

Whereas, we should be doing it more – considering the company has just told us that they like us, and want us. It all comes down to our self-valuation, market research and using the power of silence. Simple!

WEDNESDAY 11th MARCH

Delivering our final Leadership Plus presentation to our clients: Sensomatics

Sensomatics are a SME, looking to disrupt the virtual market with their new product. FlaVR is a virtual reality accessory that delivers virtual flavour (as an authentic representation of real flavour). We are thankful to Alan Chalmers and Trevor Power for giving us the opportunity to work on this project. We hope our portfolio of work, which consisted of:

  • thorough market research, audit and segmentation
  • identifying a route to market using the lean start up methodology
  • gathering market evidence to support the quantified research

…will contribute towards furthering the start-up journey! (Of course, my favourite part is always the final presentation!)

And with that I concluded my hustle-bustle of a week!

“At the end of the day, we can endure much more than we think we can”

– Frida Kahlo

A little bit of inspiration for the rest of the MBA. 🌸 

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