2021 Best & Brightest Online MBAs: Bharat Datt, Jack Welch Management Institute

Bharat Datt, Msc, CCP, CPC, FPP, MBA

Jack Welch Management Institute

“Passionate leader trying to make a difference and learning every day how best to inspire others.”

Age: 53

Hometown: Newmarket, Ontario

Fun fact about yourself: I play several keyboard instruments, like the piano, accordion, and harmonium. My grandmother was a classical pianist, so I learned to play at the young age of four because of her influence. My children now also play.

Undergraduate School and Degree: I earned my undergrad and a Master’s in Bio-Sciences at the Sri Sathya Sai University of Higher Learning, where I earned a Gold Medal in academics. I did my perfusion degree from the University of Toronto, The Michener Institute of Applied Health Sciences and was awarded the Edwards Life Science Scholastic Achievement Award for my cardiovascular perfusion course. Then I challenged my American board exam and earned the CCP, a Certified Clinical Perfusionists degree, and then CPC, the Canadian equivalent. I also have a fellowship in pediatric perfusion, FPP, awarded by the American Society of extra corporeal technology—AMSECT and am a Fellow of the American Academy of Cardiovascular Perfusion—AACP.

List Company and Roles:

Founder, CanAmerica Cardiopulmonary

Formerly Director of Perfusion, Children’s Hospital of New Orleans – CHNOLA

Formerly Chief Perfusionist- Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, Orlando, Florida

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? It’s a tough question, but I would say earning my MBA is what I’m most proud of. I completed it at a phase of my life when most people aren’t usually inclined to continue their educational growth. And I finished it while working full time and while also in a leadership position. I not only succeeded in my endeavor, but earned the Welch Scholar award. Healthcare has demanding requirements and many pressures, so earning my MBA while in this position is such an outstanding achievement.

Why did you choose this school’s online MBA program? My job is a 24/7, 365 days-a-year job. When you work in pediatric perfusion, your life is on hold for a sick baby when you’re on call. So for me, the flexibility of an online MBA was paramount. And the number of benefits and resources which JWMI offers students is tremendous. I am a skilled healthcare professional with a medical science educational background. However, I lacked business executive presence and knowledge for even simple things like anchoring a conference call or giving a Ted Talk-style presentation. JWMI promised all of that and more and delivered that promise.

What was your favorite part of being in an online MBA program? The ability to question everything and be rewarded for that curiosity was my favorite element within JWMI’s online MBA program. Other than some of the leadership values, the content in the program was brand new to me. With this new vision, I became a better leader; I learned to question not just what I was learning but question what I was doing in my day-to-day job. You want to come to work and ask, “How am I going to do this today?” “How can I make it better for our patients?” “How can I make it better for our institution?” “How can I make it better for our team?” You’ve got to have that energy to do that every day. And while we will all have challenging days, you should be coming into work with a passion and curiosity. Because whether you are in business or healthcare, it’s not about being right; it’s about getting it right. And curiosity is the key to improving outcomes for you and others.

What was the most surprising thing about an online learning environment? I was surprised at the value JWMI placed on authenticity. You might wrongfully assume that an online program would lack a focus on authenticity as it lacks face-to-face contact. But it’s the opposite. The online learning environment validated my leadership style and gave me more confidence. In my other educational experiences, I had been told I was too passionate and that I couldn’t change everything all the time. It never felt right to me. But, going through the leadership course at JWMI and learning about authenticity, I saw how important it is to be honest and bring passion, energy, edge, and the ability to execute and energize to each endeavor.

How did your online experience compare with your in-the-classroom experience as an undergraduate student? The online experience was much more bi-directional than uni-directional. In my undergrad courses, even in my cardiovascular perfusion course at the University of Toronto, there was a great emphasis on instruction but a lack of discussion around that instruction. You would simply listen to a lecture, and then you’d go home and study for an upcoming exam. But at JWMI, you have discussions about topics. And, you aren’t just learning from your professors, but you actually learn from your classmates. The level of interesting discussions and learnings from my classmates was unique.

What is your best piece of advice to an applicant for thriving in an online MBA program? There are a few pieces of advice I could offer an applicant:

  1. Read everything. Absorb the curriculum. There are so many great resources available each week at JWMI, Harvard Business Review case studies, Executive of Practice videos, and course-specific books, just to name a few. Going above and beyond to digest it all will be a great benefit.
  2. Stay one or two weeks ahead. Working ahead gives you the flexibility to account for unpredictable events. In my job, I could go to work and not come home for 24 to 48 hours. I didn’t want that to happen on the day I had an assignment due. Working ahead gave me the flexibility to get the job done on my timeline.

What would you change about an online MBA Program? Nothing. I wouldn’t change a thing. It was an amazing experience. If there’s something you could do to supplement it, I would suggest an expansion of the networking events. I live in a small town, and the networking events were often in big cities. However, I would have flown or driven to an out-of-state networking event for the opportunity to meet my professors and fellow students.

How has your online education helped you in your current job? JWMI has helped me to optimize patient outcomes. There are two words in clinical science which are very important, especially in the context of the patient. One is quality, and the other is safety. In my career as a perfusion leader, I was able to apply JWMI principles and make a number of important clinical changes. We optimized blood management, reducing the utilization of blood by 60%, which is hard to do with little babies since they have so little circulating blood.

JWMI taught me values that I’ve used to inspire my team to do the right thing for the patient. The program gave me more confidence and newfound self-awareness. I was able to assess my strengths and weaknesses and use that assessment to tap the skills of my team. We’ve been able to collaborate towards a single shared value, which is optimizing outcomes for our patients.

Number of Hours Per Week Spent On Online MBA: I spent most of my time working on the weekends. I put in five hours on Saturday and five hours on Sunday, and probably another 30 to 60 minutes each weekday. I prefer to watch the videos and print out and read the material, but on occasion, I would also utilize my drives to work listening to the “readings” on Audible.

What is your ultimate long-term professional goal? I want to continue to make a difference to the patients and their families, and also to my team. JWMI has given me an opportunity to explore different options. That could manifest itself in a number of ways, working in an industry setting or in healthcare institutions. Regardless of the leadership role I would take, I know that my ultimate goal is one that allows me the satisfaction of watching others and my team succeed. Because leadership is not about my success, it’s about growing others.


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