Doing meaningful work with a dose of finance savvy

Despite doing well as a banking executive, Lynnette Wang Lingfang desired a socially rewarding career in healthcare. She says she’s found “the best of both worlds” in doing an MBA programme at NUS, given the business school’s consistently top global rankings and its tie-up with the university’s school of public health that would allow her to specialise in the sector.

Lynnette Wang Lingfang, Singaporean Part-time MBA Student. Class of 2015, Intake 2013

Lynnette Wang Lingfang, Singaporean Part-time MBA Student. Class of 2015, Intake 2013

Monetary incentives not the sole motivation

My career started after I graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor in Business Administration from the Singapore Management University. Like many of my peers aspiring to enter the banking industry, I was elated when I had the opportunity to join Citibank as a trade operations executive. Year 2008 was the onset of an economic downturn with the high-profile collapse of the Lehman Brothers company. With banks cutting jobs worldwide, I was glad I managed to secure that position. While work went on well, I started to reflect on what I really wanted to do as my long-term career. It became apparent to me that monetary incentives of the finance industry would not be the sole and main driver of my career; I wanted to do something that would be socially rewarding as well. Continue reading

Spotlight: Family Business Management

What’s the value of an MBA for family business management? In this post, Harry Santoso shares why he decided it was time to get an MBA, how he got his family board to see the value in this decision, how he’s been managing his time, and what he’s learned so far.

Family Business MBA Story

Harry, could you share about your family business & background?

My family is in the scrap metal trading (Examples of commodities that we deal with include aluminium scrap, copper scrap, stainless steel scrap, etc) and aluminium ingot manufacturing business. Our main export markets are Asian countries (e.g. China, India, Japan, Middle East, South Korea).

After I completed my undergraduate studies in accounting and finance, I immediately joined the family business. Since it was a family business, some job functions were customized and there is sometimes no clear-cut separation of duties. I was more involved in the general management, logistic planning, and marketing, because those three responsibilities are the core of the business. As the job functions imply, it involves frequent travel, overtime, and dealing with various kind of people, from warehouse staff right up to government officials or top management. While technical accounting and finance skills were useful to evaluate reports, certain soft-skills, such as influence, negotiation, communication, effective wielding of authority are very important too.

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Enjoying The NUS MBA Experience…

A part-time NUS MBA student shares her experience in adjusting to student life. 

“From tomorrow, Mama will be going to school too,” is that what I had told my puzzled 2 year old a few months ago. I showed her my backpack, she brought out hers, and we chuckled together…but at the back of my mind, I was nervous. I had not been in an academic setting in more than 8 years and the last time I had been a student things were much different– I had no filial responsibilities. This was not the first time I was getting out of my comfort zone, and I decided to give the best to and get the best out of the MBA experience.  While prioritizing time and activities will be vital to success; enjoying the journey will be most important.

When I reflect on my undergraduate years; I think of the friendships, on-campus jobs, mentors, student clubs, research-conferences, and internships which enriched my learning outside the classroom. I yearned for a similar student life experience through the MBA. With more than 36,000 students spanning over 100 countries, 70+ student clubs and several world class research centres, NUS offers unparalleled diversity in campus culture and opportunities.

Here is a glimpse of student life during the first two months at the NUS MBA –

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Transiting into life as a Part-time MBA

Luke Goh explains his decision to take up a part-time MBA and shares tips on transitioning into life as an MBA candidate.

This year’s part-time MBA programme recorded one of the largest student intakes, both in student population and proportion in relation with full time intake, and I am proud be part of this history making cohort. With the economy making incremental recovery since the last recession in 2008, it is no surprise that many people – like myself, have decided to hold onto our jobs while pursuing our MBA dream. In fact I am glad that at NUS MBA programme, we have the liberty to choose between doing a Part-time and a Full-time programme. It offers potential candidates the opportunity to tailor make the programme to the amount of time they can commitment.

However, the decision between a Part-time and a Full-time programme is not one without careful considerations. After all, most of us would probably be only doing our MBA once in our lifetime, thus want to maximise our investment. Prior to my decision to take up the Part-time MBA offer at NUS, I have thought of several implications on doing the MBA as a Part-time student. I would often question myself on things I would miss out on if I were to pursue the Part-time track. Am I able to juggle my work commitment, social life and student life all at the same time? Would I lose out on the chance to network with other students?

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