2017 Best MBAs: Lolita Munos Taub, IE Business School

Lolita Munos Taub

IE Business School

“Woman-in-tech, feminist, travel and sushi lover, advisor, speaker, writer, business woman, always in beta.”

Age: 31

Hometown: Carlsbad, California

Fun fact about yourself: I used to be a Greco-Roman wrestler on an all boys team, weight class 53kg (117lbs).

Undergraduate School and Degree: University of Southern California. BA, International Relations (Global Business)

Where did you work before enrolling in business school? Glassbreakers, VP of Sales

Where did you intern during the summer of 2016? As a contributor for The Huffington Post Tech, I wrote an artificial intelligence column where I interviewed investors, founders and experts in the field. As a speaker, I gave keynotes, and talks on women and tech.

Where will you be working after graduation? I plan to work at a Tech Fortune 100, straddling the startup and corporate world, and pushing innovation forward as a proud woman in tech.

Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School:

Forbes 30 Under 30 Finalist, Forbes

100 Most Inspirational MBA Recognition, MBA World Summit

Inspirational Woman Project Recognition, The Huffington Post

Mentor, Junior Division, Technovation Challenge Madrid

Advisor, STEAM Women Project, United Nations Women Empower Women

Judge, Startup Chile

Host, Venture Network, IE Business School

Career Representative, IE Business School

Career Blog Contributor, IE Business School

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? As a mentor of Technovation Challenge Madrid, one of my proudest moments has been hearing my 9 to 12 year-old mentee girls tell me that they’re excited about becoming leaders in tech and business. Their words are a great achievement because I care about the fact that less than 12% of tech Fortune 500 company executives are women; and I care to change that. These girls’ words are a step in the direction of a world that has more women tech leaders.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? Growing up, my dad used to tell me, “Work hard so you don’t have to rely on a man; you can take care of yourself, and do whatever you want with your life.” For almost a decade, I’ve worked hard as a woman-in-tech — a consultant, a sales professional, and an entrepreneur — and through that I’ve reached my biggest professional achievement: becoming a self-made and financially independent woman. I’m proud of this achievement because it’s what my dad always wanted for me; it’s what I’ve wanted for myself for a long time; and it’s what allows me to further invest in myself (get an MBA at one of the top business schools in the world), and further invest (my time and resources) into tech and gender parity progress.

What was your favorite MBA Course and what was the biggest insight you gained about business from it? My favorite MBA course is Managerial Decision Making (MDM). This class has made me realize that along with tech savviness, a general manager needs to truly appreciate, learn, and know how to leverage numbers. MDM has opened up my eyes to the cool-factor that is taking data sets, running simulations, and gaining insight to help decision makers make more informed decisions.

Why did you choose this business school?I chose IE when I realized that this was “an unusual school for unusual people.” I’ve never fit into any particular mold and, in my business school hunt and talks with alumni and current students, I noticed that this was the same for them. It was the unusual-factor that drew me into IE.

What did you enjoy most about business school in general? The people. It’s incredible how much you can learn from the comments in class and the meals, drinks, and coffees you share with a group of some of the most eccentric and talented people from around the world. Their stories empower, their interests and values inspire, and their diversity (55+ countries strong) drives you to think global.

What is your best piece advice to an applicant hoping to get into your school’s MBA program? Pride yourself in your uniqueness and know that your differences will be celebrated (and challenged) at the IE Business School.

What is the biggest myth about your school? There’s a myth going around IE Business School that says you can only have two out of three S’s: sleep, socializing, and studying. Coffee helps.

What was your biggest regret in business school? Not having more time to get to know all my peers at a deeper level.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? I most admire my friend Ejike Nick Izejiobi, from Lagos, Nigeria. He is a smart and kind man who believes in gender equality. Ejike advocates for women, speaks proudly of strong women, (like his wife) and provides support to them. For example, Ejike is supporting his wife in getting her MBA as well and making sure his little girl knows she can be anything she wants.

I knew I wanted to go to business school when…I realized that an MBA would allow me to learn from the best and brightest businessmen and women from around the world.”

If I hadn’t gone to business school, I would be…hustling in the startup and corporate world of Silicon Valley.”

If you were a dean for a day, what one thing would you change about the MBA experience? I would give everyone the day off to catch up on life and work.

What is your ultimate long-term professional goal? Fortune 500 Tech C-Suite, supporting diversity and inclusion efforts in the tech industry, and investing in women and minority led endeavours.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? My 3rd grade elementary school teacher, Mr. Magat. He saw potential in me and invested in me. Mr. Magat lent my parents money to buy my first computer, when my parents couldn’t afford it, and spent his Saturday mornings teaching me how to use it. That was my entry into the tech world I love.

In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? I would like my peers to remember me as someone who is driven, an accessible resource, and always available for a good conversation over coffee.

Favorite book: Siddhartha

Favorite movie or television show: Hidden Figures

Favorite musical performer: Beyonce

Favorite vacation spot: Kerala, India

Hobbies? Yoga, traveling, reading, meeting people who want to change the world

What made Lolita such an invaluable addition to the class of 2017?

“Since the beginning of the digital innovation MBA course, Lolita has been an insightful, sensitive, and goal-oriented student with a clear sense of direction and purpose. Lolita doesn’t rest on her laurels and natural talents, but rather, is hard-working and committed to improving as a business leader. She is truly special for her enthusiasm and commitment to learning and helping others. As Steve Jobs once said, “People with passion can change the world,” and Lolita is one of those people. She has been passionate about the digital world, and she will be a great transformer of organizations and an exemplary motivator. I am excited to see how far her educational and professional journey will take her in the future.”

Jose Esteves
Professor of Information Systems
IE Business School

DON’T MISS: THE COMPLETE HONOR ROLL: BEST & BRIGHTEST MBAS OF 2017