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Confidence to lead firms in complex commercial world

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 11 July, 2018, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 11 July, 2018, 5:16pm

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As he made his way through the Kellogg-HKUST executive MBA, Michael Yue could sense the shift in himself from having a local or regional mindset to taking a far more global view of things.

That was clearly a function of the broad-based curriculum and the opportunity to take electives at leading business school campuses around the world. It was also the result of studying with a dynamic group of high-flying executives who represented a diverse mix of nationalities, cultures, industries and viewpoints.

“If you get one chance to do an EMBA, you should aim to do it with the best,” says Yue, who is graduating this summer with the KH20 class.

“I was impressed throughout by the high calibre and different experiences of my classmates. What they were able to contribute made for some incredible classroom discussions and, on many occasions, really opened my eyes,” he adds.

He says that the first couple of months, when getting used to new commitments and realigning priorities, were the toughest. He was ready for that, though, having sought out alumni beforehand and listening to their advice on what to expect and how to get the most out of the programme.

“They were very generous with their time, gave thoughtful advice, and helped to guide me through the initial decision-making process,” Yue says. “That gave me a sense of the great culture that HKUST and Kellogg have developed. And the ‘sample’ class with Professor Milind Rao, where he made complicated concepts easy to understand, was a defining moment because it convinced me to apply.”

Early on, Yue had also considered what opportunities there would be in his day-to-day role as the head of learning and development, APAC, to put new skills and learning to practical use. As things turned out, he has already been able to engineer a career switch within his company, opening the door to different responsibilities and more diverse involvement. He sees this as a first step and is looking ahead to a future where he can lead with purpose and make a real impact as the pace of change continues to accelerate.

“The EMBA has given me the confidence to lead in an increasingly complex business environment,” he says. “Not only do I have new tools to use, but now I also have an extensive network of classmates and other alumni to lean on if unforeseen or unfamiliar issues come up in future.”