Work Life Balance for the EMBA
The executive MBA is a great option for mid-career executives looking to build their business acumen while maintaining a stable career. However, it also comes with its challenges. For one, an EMBA program can be tough place to balance with a full-time career and a family.
Finding a Support System
When the times get tough, it’s okay to reach out for support. And this is especially true for EMBA students.
Jackie Dawson, who recently graduated from the University of Pittsburgh’s Katz EMBA program, tells Poets & Quants for Executives that it’s important for EMBA students to reach out for help.
“There will come a time, probably more than once, when you will need help in understanding an assignment, meeting a deadline at work, or meeting your family obligation,” she writes. “Use your support system. Do not be afraid to reach out to professors, co-workers, and family members to enlist them to help you to be successful.”
Sebastian Cerezo Montañez, who recently earned his EMBA degree from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, says EMBA students need to have a proper support system in place and that your employer knows your challenges.
“[Make] sure your bosses share the value of the program, understand your reasons for taking the MBA and will respect your out-of-the office weeks are of essence,” Montañez says. ”Additionally, building a strong team to back you in your study weeks is also a pivotal aspect.”
Kevin Zhang, an EMBA alumni of Stockholm School of Economics, tells The Local that being open with your employer is crucial.
“You have to be open with your employer. I explained I needed to work part-time while I studied. That support was very important,” he says.
How an EMBA Can Pay Off
An EMBA is tough, but it can pay off if you make it work.
Karin Ebbinghaus enrolled in the EMBA program at Stockholm School of Economics in 2014. Ebbinghaus tells The Local that having her husband and her mother help out with her children was a huge benefit. Additionally, Ebbinghaus would spend days away from her family to travel to Stockholm from her home in Southern Sweden to attend school.
“If you’re living away from home during the programme weeks, that can be really beneficial because you are really just in the MBA bubble. You can focus fully on that which is a luxury,” she tells The Local.
Now employed as an investment manager for a green tech fund, Ebbinghaus says her EMBA has paid off.
“I don’t think I would have got this position otherwise,” she tells The Local. “The MBA was a real benefit and enhanced my chances of getting hired.”
It was a tough challenge, but Ebbinghaus says the EMBA can certainly pay off if you put in the work.
“If you want to do it, do it,” she tells The Local. “You will find the time, you will find the finances. Just don’t overthink it and take one week at a time. Everything will sort itself out.”