I am passionate about building great technology products. After moving to the US in 2010, I started enquiring about b-schools in the area. TMMBA program stood out because it is fast-paced (18 month program) and the emphasis is on technology management. I signed up to visit couple of classes and after attending a Finance class and a Macroeconomics class, I decided this was the right program for me. However, I was really skeptical about my ability to manage the program and a highly demanding job at Amazon. It didn’t help when a few of the TMMBA alumni confirmed my skepticism. In order to convince myself that I could do it, I came up with a two week challenge for myself – getting a good score on GMAT with only two weeks of preparation. The fact that I am writing this post now might give you an idea whether I met my goal.
My wife, who works for Microsoft, shared similar career aspirations and felt TMMBA was the right program for her. After some thought we decided that it was smart to do the program together. Firstly, expectations were automatically set while we went through the same set of challenges together. One of us was not planning a vacation while the other crammed for an exam 🙂 Secondly, as the program progressed, we realized that learning was twice as much, mainly because we could discuss our points of view on topics ranging from personal finance to business strategy right at the dinner table. Some people might consider this extreme and they might be right. Our social life during the program was close to nil. Our close friends jokingly comment that we come out of our hibernation only once in 3 months (which is not completely untrue). However by doing the program together, we saved ourselves 18 more months of crazy hours. As our economics professor would put it, there is something to be said for opportunity cost of time.
Based on our first-hand experience, I would highly recommend TMMBA for couples who live and work in the Greater Seattle Area, and are brave enough to attempt it. Almost 17 months into the program, we think our decision to do TMMBA together was spot on. Although it was challenging to juggle personal, professional and student lives, career-wise, both of us are in a much better place.
The MBA program is so well structured that it has enabled me to build a mental map of approaching problems from various angles such as strategy, marketing, sales, accounting, finance, tax, legal and so on. At work, I am now able to contribute at a strategic level because my perspective has broadened significantly through interactions with amazing professors and smart classmates. In my opinion, TMMBA is creating a small but growing group of unique professionals who can analyze every article in the “Wall Street Journal”, talk “Blue Ocean Strategy” and at the same time create innovative technology products. The program has transformed my personal and professional lives forever in ways I never imagined possible!