IE Business School Online Masters
Juan Gutiérrez
May 16, 2009

Hello, today I want to comment about the time zone differences and how this affects…or not the scheduling of your agenda each week. As you already know, I live in Guatemala, which means that in my class I am the one that has the craziest hour to attend classes on Saturdays. Just for your information, I have to wake up at 3am every Saturday to be ready for class…….yes it sounds inhuman but the way I see it, there is always a price to pay for the things you want, in life there is no such thing as “a free meal”, so in this case I have to say, no pain no gain.

I have the personal belief that everything we do in life has to be done with energy, enthusiasm and dedication (added to passion and joy), so this is pretty much what drives me to wake up every Saturday at that crazy time. Yes, is not an easy task, but I guess the adrenaline that your body pumps once you realize that you have a great class coming, plus a presentation to give to your fellow class, plus some fun interaction with your colleagues all around the globe in real time, makes the waking up more bearable, additional to this, a strong cup of coffee aids in the process. 

The fun part is that sometimes in my case I simply don’t sleep from Friday til the class at 3am…..and not because I went out to a party and just arrived on time for the class, no! 😉 well maybe sometimes, but that’s more the exception rather than the rule, most of the times I didn’t sleep because I was studying or working on those presentations or reports due Saturday before the class. This is part of the fun, I don’t complain nor regret it because its all part of the learning (and also because I’ll sleep all day once the class is over). For me, 3am is equivalent to 11am Madrid Time, therefore classes finish around 7am which is equivalent to 2-3pm Madrid Time (sometimes it takes a bit longer because we have group meetings to split the tasks during the weekend for the reports due Monday :-), it sounds fun, isn’t it?)  

Not everything is a “con”, living at this side of world is like living in the past, why? well let me explain a theory of relativity that I developed in this program. Since we use Madrid Time as reference for everything we do, meetings, report deadlines, classes, quizzes, etc, then for the duration of the program Madrid Time will be “the present”, people who live farther to the east therefore having their time zome ahead of Madrid Time, they live in “the future” and people like me who live farther to the west therefore having their time zone behind Madrid Time, we live in “the past” :-D.  This gives us an advantage when delivering cases and presentations, because we have more time so to speak to prepare for them, since we are “lagging behind” we can take advantage of our nights to finish them, i.e. on Fridays when we can finish the presentations while our colleagues at the other side of the pond are sleeping (of course, here is were the cycle closes regarding our lack of sleep during Saturday early-crazy mornings)….but well this is another chapter of the fun story named Global MBA at IE…..

later gator


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