2020 Best & Brightest Online MBAs: Alex Hayman, IE Business School

Alex Hayman

IE Business School, Global Online MBA

Analytical, but practical – always seeking out new ideas, projects, and theories to test out.”

Age: 25

Hometown: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Fun fact about yourself: When I used to travel a lot for work, I got into plane spotting when waiting at

the airport – now I can identify any commercial jet.

Undergraduate School and Degree: Queen’s University, Engineering Physics

Where are you currently working? Food Cycle Science, Director of Strategy

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? In my previous role, I led the evolution of our consulting department from offering custom dashboards to helping our clients solve their most difficult space management challenges. The impact we were able to make was so much greater once we took on that advisory role and accelerated our growth with key clients.

Why did you choose this school’s online MBA program? I was attracted by IE Business School’s solid reputation and the program’s diversity – it was a unique opportunity to meet and network with people from all over the world. A lot of MBA programs I looked into felt very focused on certain industries (often finance and consulting), but IE Business School had such a broad mix of professional backgrounds.

What was your favorite part of being in an online MBA program? I really enjoyed being able to take the learnings and apply them directly on the job, or take real work challenges and use them as the basis of course projects. It was very practical.

What was the most surprising thing about an online learning environment? I was surprised by how interactive and team-based the program was. It’s not just watching videos – everyone is connected live at the same time asking questions, doing simulations, etc. Each course has a major teamwork component and you are working (remotely of course) with your team to get it done.

How did your online experience compare with your in-the-classroom experience as an undergraduate student? The classroom experience I’d say is the same more or less. There are lectures and projects, assignments to complete, and exams to take. Of course, the difference with the online classroom experience is indeed primarily online.

What is your best piece of advice to an applicant for thriving in an online MBA program? Make sure you can dedicate enough time to it – it’s non-stop for 18 months, there’s lots of readings, discussion boards, group work, etc. They all take time. To get the most out of the experience, you need to put in the effort.

What would you change about an online MBA Program? Some elective courses and an additional in-person module would have been nice. It’s always a tough balance with residential weeks since not everybody can take that much time off their jobs.

How has your online education helped you in your current job? The online MBA reflects how we work today – and that has suddenly become even more true than ever before. Work happens online and you need to build and maintain relationships online. Learning to work with a globally distributed team in different time zones, cultures, industries, and ways of working is extremely valuable.

What is your ultimate long-term professional goal? I’m enjoying working in a start-up right now and building something new. One day, I’d like to start my own business or non-profit.

Don’t Miss: The Entire Honor Roll of the Best & Brightest Online MBA Grads of 2020

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