Executive MBA, 2007
Process Development Manager, Victrex
I am a senior scientist with Victrex, a firm based in the North West of England that manufactures and markets an advanced polymeric material. There were a number of factors that influenced my decision to take the Executive MBA at Lancaster:
- A chemist by training with many years of industrial experience in this field, I believed that I needed the stimulus of a new challenge, something outside my technical “comfort zone”!
- The Management School at Lancaster has an international reputation, links with industries outside my own sphere and a course structure that suited me, my family and work commitments.
Lancaster’s action-orientated approach, coupled with the skilled, challenging and stimulating directions chosen by the lecturers and tutors, facilitates the learning process, resulting in a greater depth and breath of understanding.
Consultancy Challenge experience
I’d like to highlight one of the aspects of the course that I found particularly rewarding – the Consultancy Challenge. This was an opportunity to put all the learning gained on the course into action as part of a small team composed of members from my cohort.
The FLoWE (Fylde Low Waste and Energy) Project is the concept of the Fylde MP, Rt. Hon. Michael Jack, who is the Chair of the UK government's Environment and Rural Affairs Select Committee. Mr Jack is an enthusiastic supporter of initiatives that improve energy efficiency. This project is the most ambitious of its kind in the country, with the objective of making Fylde the most energy-efficient borough within the UK from its current position of 49th worst of the 386 UK boroughs (based on data from 2003).
The aim of our Consultancy Challenge project was to develop a strategy for improving energy efficiency in the domestic sector of Fylde Low Waste and Energy. Not only was this a challenging short-term objective on a real issue of real value to FLoWE, but the EMBA assessment process also included presentations, a written report plus feedback on your performance from your team members and the organisation we worked with. This was a significant undertaking that was completed within five days! I was amazed at how much can be achieved in such a short period of time.
I must add a word of caution at this stage. The previous paragraphs do not fully convey the commitment required to take and complete this EMBA. This course will challenge you and you will only benefit if you are prepared to commit time and effort to it. To be successful the support of your family and your firm is a prerequisite. When you successfully complete this course, don’t forget to attend graduation. In my opinion, this ceremony’s more for your family’s benefit than your own!
The Lancaster Executive MBA more than met my expectations. I believe that not only did I learn the aspects of management, strategy, finance, etc, that I expected from EMBA, but I found out a lot more about myself. Over the duration of this course I read more than 500 papers and 15 books. This has reinvigorated my quest for knowledge outside my “science” lens. I am still working for Victrex, grappling with the challenges and opportunities of the advanced materials business.