"I can and have constantly applied immediately what I have learned – from negotiation skills to change management approaches, from how to gain a sustainable competitive advantage to delivering sustainable supply chains."
Amanda Brooks, Managing Director, brookscomm, shares her experiences studying for an MBA at Surrey.
Why did you choose an MBA at The University of Surrey?
I am MD of and co-founded our business 21 years ago. We have survived and thrived through some great and some challenging years by taking an agile approach to business and a forward thinking, flexible approach to team. We already had close links with Surrey Research Park and the university, having focused on working with businesses in technology and innovation.
Having worked closely alongside the university for many years, I was aware of the Surrey Connected MBA and of the ethos of the university. I had been considering the possibility of an MBA at Surrey for a few years. I needed an MBA that allowed a flexible, practical, hands on approach to learning, one that I could undertake alongside a challenging full-time role and a family.
Speaking to Chris Mahon (MBA Programmes Director) further confirmed that this was the way forward, providing opportunities for increasing and enhancing my business skills and enabling me to take my existing business to the next level, to achieve the ambitious 5 year plan we have set ourselves. Studying for the MBA is also supporting the new start up plans we have for next year and seems like the perfect place from which to properly launch this new venture.
Did you find you could implement what you learnt in class on the weekends at work?
I can and have constantly applied immediately what I have learned – from negotiation skills to change management approaches, from how to gain a sustainable competitive advantage to delivering sustainable supply chains. From a variety of modules and more I have gained inspiration plus really practical, easily implementable steps to make me a better leader.
The opportunity to work with fellow students outside of my industry with different experience and challenges is enabling me to broaden my knowledge and expertise and work with an interesting variety of colleagues.
What is the most useful skill you have learned during your time on the Surrey MBA course so far?
There is a lot to absorb in a short time – you learn to better focus, encapsulate, apply, analyse, review. For me, my practical, often self-learned knowledge is constantly being enhanced with new knowledge of theories and frameworks and different applications and approaches.
What new opportunities have you gained being at Surrey?
My business is thriving, we are able to offer more to our clients and to our team. We have already accelerated our business growth plan by 50% and this has been made possible by the Executive MBA experience.
Furthermore the focus on connections is supporting and enhancing my local Surrey business network and a wider national and international network. An inspirational and hugely beneficial experience already and there is still so much more to do.