22 December 2022

The role of an MBA in a creative career

Author: Diana Sofía López Zuluaga - International Full Time MBA student

In my career path as an industrial designer, I had the opportunity to develop my own business back in my home country, Colombia. We designed and commercialized apparel for urban cyclists; in this case, product development was the key to the business, to understand the needs of the consumer to create something innovative that pushed the brand further. Nonetheless, even if I had the creative tools to develop new ideas and strategies, my managerial skills were based on my experience, and not on strong academic foundations. This meant that the business was centred around the product, but in the end this wasn’t enough, as all the external factors were affecting the performance of the business.

After I took the decision to leave the business with the aim of getting more grounding in the managerial role, I found the MBA at POLIMI GSoM, and after a long review of the program I realized that it was the perfect match with the goals I had. The MBA provides a lot of tools for performing in a managerial role; it gives a larger perspective of the world and helps open the mind in a different way. But more than that, this business school really cares about doing things differently, cultivating an ambition towards a more socially responsible mindset, and nowadays this certainly requires thinking out of the box.

On that basis, this training became a perfect way of laying down a structure for creative thinking, to be able to lead creative teams towards better and more innovative solutions. This is possible by considering all the aspects and areas that are not only relevant at company level, but also at country or global level, and using them to achieve a better result. So, in the end, it becomes a way of expanding the mind into a whole new level, which allows you to be better prepared to lead teams that will achieve goals from a perspective outside the box, and this is where both the creative and the managerial skills combine. In addition, on the other hand, it enables you to bring design thinking not just to new solutions and projects, but also within the organization towards a better development of the company and its intrinsic goals.

Even if one of the reasons I took the MBA path was because I was looking for new ways of thinking, the technical and soft skills are also very important, as my long-term goals are still focused on having my own business. In this case, the education has been opening my mind to new organizations and new markets, making things seem approachable, so that the ambition within me has been growing. Furthermore, the approach of a purposeful way of achieving goals in our personal and working life can also create new spaces for developing projects with real meaning. On the other hand, the specific hard skills enable us to analyze and better understand the operations in all areas of a business, the economic point of view that can’t be overlooked, the performance and KPIs, but also the relationships, goals, values, and vision of a company, one that moves forwards and becomes ever more committed to its people.

So, in the end, for me, creative thinking can occur with a better understanding of the situation, having all the tools to create, leading to better results in terms of differentiation and diligence for the business. This is what the MBA allows, the training of new leaders who can take their previous career paths and skyrocket their skills and vision towards a better understanding of the economy and of companies. So, why choose an MBA for creative industries? The answer is easy: your vision of the world will change; you will arrive at a whole new level, and it will allow you to be a better and more structured creative thinker.

22 December 2022

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