Tejash graduated from the Kellogg School of Management in 2008 and is the CEO and Cofounder at www.Fatminds.com. As part of our series of GMAT/MBA interviews we talk to Tejash about his business school experience and garner advice for MBA hopefuls.
Why business school?
I pursued a business school education for multiple reasons. I had completed a very rigorous engineering curriculum at Berkeley. Hence, I desired to learn the fundamentals of business education – marketing, finance, accounting, operations and more. I wanted to explore other career opportunities outside of the pure technology realm. Business school would give me the means to try different jobs and learn about careers from my peers and other alumni who were in the field.
Ihad lived on the west coast for years. Going to Kellogg would increase the breadth of my professional network, geographically and from other industry segments, significantly.
What advice would you give a friend working on his/her business school application?
Have a clear idea on where you are in your career, what you want from the business school experience and how you will meet those objectives if enrolled at the desired MBA program. Conveying this via compelling essays and recommendations, while highlighting your leadership potential, community contribution and successful career progression, is vital to a successful application.
What professional opportunities did you gain from your MBA?
I led the Entrepreneurship Chapter at Kellogg, worked on Wall Street during the financial crisis, interned at a Venture Capital firm, networked with European companies while on exchange at London Business School, had lunches with successful alumni and completed local and international projects. Kellogg’s infrastructure is setup to allow a student to experience everything based on his or her professional goals. This is critical in determining the best career that fits a student’s strengths.
How did you grow personally from your MBA?
Business school was a profound experience. I became very self-aware of my strengths and weaknesses. I addressed the gaps by actively learning from both peers and faculty. Kellogg’s culture, where a student is part of a new team for every class, facilitated this process of personal development by providing extensive interaction with different peers (and personalities) over the course of the program.
What was the hardest part of your MBA?
Time management and focus are the most difficult aspects of the MBA experience. Business school provides a range of professional and extracurricular opportunities. Students have exposure to different club activities, leadership positions with student clubs, competitions, internships and a plethora of networking events to go to. It is extremely important to focus on a small set of activities to obtain the desired experience; otherwise the work load can quickly overwhelm the student.
Is business school for everyone?
Business School is not for everyone. It is a huge financial commitment (lost promotions, wages, tuition and other expenses) and a prospective students need to determine whether the return on that investment will be positive. This question becomes more important for those who are older, in careers that do not require the MBA degree or have families and other commitments. Other alternatives could be the 1yr program at Kellogg or other part time or executive programs.
Other comments to MBA hopefuls?
The MBA experience “expelled the myth” that other professions were unattainable. With the right educational foundation, tenacity and networking, almost all careers are achievable. I could get a job in finance, operations or any other industry but I realized that I was most passionate about technology and entrepreneurship. This has led to my current startup, www.Fatminds.com. Additionally, the MBA experience is a function of a student’s goals. It could be a two year party or it could be two years filled with numerous different professional experiences, tremendous personal growth and the beginning of lifelong relationships with a new set of friends.
As my mentor said, “When you are 50 you will either have 30 years of work experience or 28 years of work experience and 2 years of relationships and learning. Those 2 years will be worth a lot more. The choice is yours.”