Six Ways to Get Ready for your MBA

As you prepare to enter MBA school, your thoughts are racing on how you can maximize this life-altering journey. Here’s six ideas to help you get started.

  1. Think “Career” Now. You’ve entered into the MBA program with a goal of learning new skills that will help you advance, or in some cases shift, your career path.  Start to think about what that career path will look beforeyou arrive so your Career Management Centre can be a useful resource to help you along the way.
  1. Expand your Horizons– As Mark Twain said, “Never let schooling get in the way of your education”. By this I mean plan to be engaged in student experiences such as case competitions, student governance, volunteerism etc. By doing so you will grow your leadership and interpersonal skills, so important in today’s competitive job market.
  1. Check Us Out–  Start reading about Canada and Alberta in general, and Edmonton specifically. Who are the business leaders? What industries drive our economy? How is the change in the Alberta Provincial Government affecting industry? The more you know about where you’ll be going to school, the more prepared you’ll be to integrate into the community when you arrive.
  1. Think about your “Personal Brand”– Something you may not have given much thought to up to this point is how you are “showing up”. Such things as hygiene, dress, energy, approachability are all factors in your success. We’ll be spending time on exploring and understanding your personal brand, so start reading up on it now.
  1. Vital Behaviors– You’re about to step into an intensive Master’s program with an end goal of advancing your career, and certain behaviors will determine your success in achieving your goals. Being resourceful (overcoming obstacles),tenacious (not giving up) and courteous. Manners matter when people are assessing you as a person, not as a worker, and how you conduct yourself may cause more sway in decision-making than skill set.
  1. Networking– Get ready to network like you never have before. Many MBA grads find their positions not through regular application channels, but through their network. If you’re not starting to build your network as soon as you arrive, you’ll fall behind.

Its an exciting time to be entering MBA school, and these small tips can get you on the road to success early. “

Brent Collingwood Director, Alumni and Corporate Relations

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