As expected November has been another busy month, but I’m pleased that two weeks ago I finally completed all the lessons for this semester’s three modules. I’ve also spent some time this month working on the TMAs, although unlike past semesters I haven’t had time to complete all of them, submitting only two out of six. However, to try and make sure that I’m on track for the final assignment I spent 2-3 hours on each of the remaining four TMAs, reviewing the case studies, documenting some initial thoughts around how I would approach the TMA, and noting any key observations relating to the individual questions. This was quite an interesting exercise, not only because it helped me think about applying the various theoretical concepts, but also because some of the case studies were fascinating, such as:
- Innovation & Creativity – Proctor and Gamble’s Connect + Develop programme, which was set up around 10 years ago to move the R&D focus from internal innovation to Open Innovation. We used this case to think about how the organisation implemented open innovation from an organisational perspective, and how its market positioning impacted the adoption of the programme.
- Strategic Advantage – The terrorist attacks on Mumbai in 2008, and specifically the Taj Mahal Hotel. For this case study we had to consider how their corporate strategy affected the level of preparedness for such an attack, and then look at how the management teams responded both during and after the attacks. I have spent quite a bit of time looking at the Tata Group over the last few years, and so it was interesting to apply some of this experience using the theories from the course.
One aspect of the Warwick MBA that I don’t think I’ve mentioned yet is the assignment tutors. For each module we are allocated a tutor who is primarily responsible for marking TMAs and answering questions on my.wbs. However, some tutors also make themselves available to support students on a variety of topics – I have contacted them to get more insight on some of the concepts we have studied, clarity on how to approach the assignments, and advice on a number of other topics as well. Overall the response has been excellent – their guidance has been really helpful when writing assignments, and it has been good to have a one-to-one discussion, which doesn’t occur often in a distance learning environment.
Shortly after my last blog post I made the decision to change my elective module for next year. I had previously selected Entrepreneurship and New Venture Creation because I felt it would be interesting, and provide a different perspective to working in a large global organisation. However, as this year has progressed I started to think that it might be better to choose something more in-line with my current career path.
The module I have chosen is Corporate Finance. This involves topics such as how an organisation deals with capital funding & investment, interacts with stock markets, and deals with risk. I had a few options to choose from, but one of the reasons for selecting this was that it’s not the type of subject that I could easily buy a book for and read about following the MBA, whereas some of the other interesting alternatives I feel I can study in my own time when I’ve finished the course.
That’s it for this blog – only a short post this time as I’m concentrating on finishing three x 3,000 word assignments which are due in a week’s time. Good luck to everyone else who’s in the midst of writing assignments and preparing for exams – the finish line (for this semester at least) is in sight now!