September 30, 2015

HeadsUp: Weatherhead School of Management Homecoming 2015 - Oct. 7-11

Homecoming 2015: October 7-11

All Weatherhead alumni are invited: encourage all of your Weatherhead friends to attend! 

We are excited to welcome you back to campus for a fun-filled weekend, including class dinners, thought-provoking programming, networking opportunities and, most importantly, time to reconnect with longtime friends and classmates! An entire weekend is planned with events and activities to commemorate your time at the university.

September 28, 2015

MBA Career Trek: New York City 2015

Steve Humphries is a Weatherhead School of Management Class of 2017 full-time MBA student reporting on Weatherhead's recent trip to New York City.

Day 1:
We started our trek with one-on-one informational interviews with alumni in our fields of interest.  This was a great way to start exploring industries in which I have little experience. I was able to better wrap my head around new industries of interest--where to start, what’s required and what’s to be expected. The Career Management Office did a great job facilitating a focused dialogue with alumni who had “been there and done it,” so to speak. In my case, I met with a Weatherhead alum from Ernst & Young. We both shared our stories of how we got to where we are today. He welcomed my questions, gave me an idea of what he’s been working on, and gave quality advice regarding the next steps in my job search.

Later that evening, we traveled through the financial district to Bar Boulud off Broadway for an alumni reception. Getting to experience the city’s financial district culture was a plus. When we arrived, the alumni were excited to meet first and second year students. We met with recent and past graduates who were fully engaged in discussion ranging from career path/aspirations and perspectives on current events to their personal interests and why they live and work in NYC. It was a rewarding experience in that we were able to begin dialogues with successful professionals and learn about different career paths.

Day 2:
On the second day of the event, we were invited to watch the opening bell live on the NYSE floor. I must admit, this was one of the top benefits of the trip. Not often do you turn down an invitation to see the foundation of financial markets up close. We saw an IPO take place, a CNBC show being aired live and were given a tour by Peter Costa who spent more than 30 years on the stock exchange floor. We closed with a Q&A session wi
th Peter, who welcomed a continued dialogue if we had further questions. We were then given two hours to explore the surrounding landscape. I spent the majority of the time around the World Trade Center #1 building in awe of the architecture and memorial a few blocks away.

The next event scheduled was a lunch and alumni panel discussion at Citibank’s headquarters. This was an information session pertaining to mastering the job search. The alumni panel had both Weatherhead grads and other Citibank employees to offer alternative perspectives. All members of the panel were well versed in their fields and have taken different paths to get there. They all welcomed our questions related to both job search as well as networking tips. And just like Peter, they were open to continuing a dialogue with students after the event ended.

Overall, we spent quality time at every event getting to know what it means to work for a company in New York City’s financial district. The alumni were very helpful in answering our questions and providing valuable information that we would need to obtain an internship or full-time job. Tip of the cap to the Career Management Office for facilitating a highly beneficial event for students. I highly recommend that future students attend events like these as they are great ways to start building new networks in different regions.

September 18, 2015

How to land your dream job: Q&A with recent graduate Nitin Bhosale

Nitin Bhosale is a Weatherhead School of Management Class of 2015 MBA graduate and current BI Manager at Cord Blood Registry in Silicon Valley.

What was your strategy to land your dream job after your time at Weatherhead?
As a student, I wanted to utilize all the resources provided to me by Weatherhead in order to get an internship of my choice and eventually get a full-time job offer. I attended all the networking sessions, prepared for behavioral questions and kept working on my interview stories. The mock interview sessions conducted by the Career Management Office helped me strengthen my ability to map my experiences and learnings from school to the job process.

My year-long internship at BuyerQuest really helped me develop soft skills and get firsthand experience in e-commerce strategy. Eventually, I managed to get three full-time job offers; however, the BI Manager role at Cord Blood Registry is perfect in terms of my future goal to work in e-commerce strategy. My current role is in Silicon Valley, the heart of technology, which is where I always wanted to be.

What is the importance of networking in the life of an MBA? 
From day one, I was told that MBAs need to network, and throughout our program, we were taught different ways of doing it. Now that I have finished my degree, I cannot emphasize enough the importance of building and growing a strong network. Networking for me was simple: connect to a person of interest and create a lasting impression. I think that each individual should have a well-crafted pitch to make the other person intrigued. The difficult part for me was staying connected with them over time to build a long-lasting relationship. Thanks to my networking efforts, I had 38 job referrals and gave interviews with 12 different companies during my last semester at Weatherhead.
My internship at BuyerQuest was through networking efforts so I would definitely say that networking is an important part of MBA.

Any takeaways you can share from all of those interviews?
Interview preparation is really straight forward: one should analyze each and every statement in the job requirements, roles and responsibilities and try to align yourself and your experiences to those requirements.

Interviews are typically a three-step process:
1) The first interview is generally an HR screening round, in order to see if you are a fit for the role. Here it’s important you understand the company, its culture and the job requirements to prove that you are a fit by aligning your skillset accordingly.
2) The second interview is typically with the hiring manager where you are asked behavioral questions and case-based questions, depending on the nature of the organization.
3) Next is a set of three to four interviews in a row with your future team members during which the focus is on your communication skills and problem solving skills

How important a role did Weatherhead play in shaping your career? 
Weatherhead was the perfect platform to help me transition from a Technical Expert to a Business Manager. First, the Career Management Office has a wonderful team of career experts who always helped me in mock interviews and motivated me throughout the two years. Blackstone LaunchPad helped me develop my new product idea, “DormSquare,” which eventually helped me get into E-commerce strategy. Weatherhead has excellent professors who helped me academically as well as professionally, to expand my network with alumni of the school. The Business Marketing course with Mohan Reddy, Strategy with Simon Peck and Technology Entrepreneurship with Scott Shane were key to building expertise in pricing, product roadmap and product feature launch. Overall, it was a wonderful experience.

What advice would you give the students who are in the MBA program right now?
As an international student, it is challenging to adapt to a different business culture, so it’s important to start early and groom yourself for these changes. Networking is key: it’s important to attend all the events hosted by the Career Management Office, build contacts and maintain these relationships throughout your life. Find a book you like for interview preparation and make that book your bible. I used the book Cracking the PM Interview: How to Land a Product Manager Job in Technology and it was really helpful. Weatherhead has a great network of alumni who serve as mentors to guide you through each and every step of the MBA journey.

Lastly, don’t miss the Jolly Scholar's happy hour! I think it’s important to relax and also have a good time. Your MBA is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, so enjoy it.