Going into the MBA at Duke, I expected to learn a few things- and there were a lot of lessons learned from the MBA. I expected to learn about accounting, statistics, marketing, cost accounting, and more. I expected to make some network connections, and to experience some excellent teaching. The things that I didn’t expect are too numerous to list, but I’ll list a few key ones here. I had heard that getting the MBA would be life-changing, and honestly, before going through the program, I just thought it was sheer hyperbole.
Lesson Learned: Modesty is overrated
As a good girl, I’ve never been one to claim credit for everything I do, or try to hog the spotlight. As a result, at times my career has suffered, because I haven’t been my own best advocate. That has changed since I went to B-School, though. I’ve learned that I HAVE to claim credit for my own work, and make sure that my manager, and second line manager know about it. No more Ms. Modest. I’m pretty darn awesome, and I need to show that off. When someone makes a compliment, the correct answer is “Why thank you”. Period. End of comment. No “Well, I didn’t really do much…”.. Get that out of your head.
Lesson Learned: Competing With the Best Makes You Better
I’ve learned that I tend to measure myself against peers. When competing against people who are of such incredible caliber, I find myself stretching to do more than I ever thought possible before. Why yes, I do have four kids, and work full time. But so do some of the other members of my cohort at Duke. Yes, it is normal. We are normal, not crazy. Just very high performing.
Lesson Learned: I love Blogging
One of the biggest discoveries for me has been that I enjoy blogging, and writing. It started out as a lark, contributing to the Fuqua Wemba Blog. I’ve learned to try new things that I hadn’t thought of before, and it has been a lot of fun. I have a new hobby as a result. Who would have thought?
I could probably go on for pages, and write a book about the many ways that getting the MBA from Duke has impacted my life, but I’ll save those for later. I have so many lessons learned from the MBA- both inside the classroom, and outside of it.
What about you? Have you ever done anything that changed the course of your life?