IE Business School Online Masters
Ram Parasuraman
February 11, 2010

Amongst the toughest weeks in the MBA are the transition weeks, i.e. weeks in which you move from one set of courses to the other. In an aggressive program like that of IE Business school’s, there is only a few hours between ending one course and commencing the other. We had the pleasure (??) of that experience two times so far.

For procrastinators, this is a total nightmare. You are busy compiling your final report or taking your quiz in the wee hours, finishing minutes before the deadline! Lo and behold, you celebrate! After all, it is a great feeling to have been done with 1/4 of your MBA! You want to kick back with a glass of wine or play on your PS3 and yes, you even allow yourself that luxury, only to find yourself drowsy eyed and back in class the next morning (early here in California), with classmates up bright and early, speaking things you have only vaguely heard in the news!

Just yesterday you finished preparing a comprehensive plan for a company to change its “Strategy” and today you’re back solving Linear Programming problems in “Quantitative Methods”! Yes, that’s the life of an MBA student! You move from Corporate Strategy to plain numbers, of course in the context of business. From discussing Opportunity Costs to the Economy and Inflation!

The MBA above anything else, teaches you Time Management. It is easy to get faaaaar behind if we don’t adjust our time management and balance everything else in the universe, e.g. work, social life, etc. if they still exist.

As we are finding out, getting into an MBA program is only the start of a long and tough commitment to learn and to work real hard. If your MBA is a shorter duration one, it comes with a tradeoff, you have to work that much harder. In Linear Programming terms, the area of the Time – Effort rectangle is the same in any MBA. In some, like those in the US the time taken is longer and the effort is spread out, but in others, like that of European programs IE, IMD or INSEAD, the effort is intense due to the condensed time! No, they’re not joking when they tell you this during orientation or at information sessions.

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