Meet the MBA Class of 2022: Bhargav Viradia, Yale SOM

Bhargav Viradia

Yale School of Management

“An optimistic tech enthusiast excited to learn and create positive community impact.”

Hometown: Rajkot, Gujarat, India

Fun Fact About Yourself: I had tried all the items on the Starbucks menu at one point in life; albeit it has been difficult to keep that up with new regular new additions

Undergraduate School and Major: Georgia Institute of Technology, Industrial and Systems Engineering

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Tesla, Inc (Senior Analyst, Supplier Operations)

The Yale School of Management is regarded as a purpose-driven program. What is your mission? How will your MBA at Yale SOM help you fulfill that mission? I want to bring my manufacturing, operations, and automation experiences back to India and help Indian businesses. My drive to contribute to India’s economy aligns with Yale SOM’s mission to create leaders for business and society. The MBA will help me expand my knowledge in key areas such as strategic thinking and decision making that play a critical role in successfully running businesses, irrespective of their geographical location.

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of the school’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? A portion of the first-year curriculum focuses on learning fundamentals from different perspectives such as customer, competitor, and investors. This “perspectives” approach is a unique way of learning business, as it puts me in the shoes of different stakeholders. Given the relentless push for collaboration in the work environment, these outlooks make it easier to understand and address varying concerns that I will have to deal with as a leader.

What quality best describes your MBA classmates and why? Integrity. As business models, organizational structures, and corporate finance get convoluted, it is tempting to lie to skirt by difficult situations and conversations. However, my classmates are guided by a strong moral compass that helps create an open and truthful environment where everyone’s focused on growing as a leader.

What club or activity excites you most at this school? Hockey club – it is a rite of passage and an essential step in the bonding with second-year MBAs through an annual competition called the Garstka Cup!

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I was part of a group of students who created the Mental Health Student Coalition in my undergrad. Five years since its establishment, it continues to champion and raises awareness around mental health at Georgia Tech.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? Working at Tesla was a deep and enriching experience that built on my engineering background. However, it also highlighted the critical areas of knowledge that I lacked, especially when it comes to leading others. To become a better leader, I wanted to build my business acumen and sharpen my communication skills, which led to pursuing my MBA.

What other MBA programs did you apply to? Stanford GSB, Haas, Duke, Sloan

What was the most challenging question you were asked during the admissions process? “Why MBA?” – a cornerstone of most B-school applications. An honest answer required a lot of time being spent on introspection.

How did you determine your fit at various schools? I primarily looked at three factors: culture, class size, and placement. I wanted to be part of a collaborative, small community with a substantial employment prospective. Class size and employment statistics are readily available in the public domain and helped narrow down schools’ shortlist. Then, most of my research was based on talking to either current students or alumni since they represent school culture. The conversations that I enjoyed the most represented the best “fit” for me.

What was your defining moment and how did it prepare you for business school? Coming to the US for my undergrad was a defining moment in life. Both countries have different underlying value systems, and yet both seem to function well. It forced me to confront, challenge, and adopt differing opinions. The diversity of the cohort provides an excellent place for me to test and evolve my values.

What is your favorite company and what could business students learn from them? Tesla. The company prides itself on its “scrappiness” – achieving results with scare resources. It’s a lesson that students would greatly benefit from since we will be making decisions in resource-constrained environments.

What is the most important attribute that you are seeking in an MBA employer? Innovation. Employers that are focused on innovation tend to create value over a more extended period and reduce the risk of going obsolete.


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