The Entrepreneurial Leader

25 July 2022

Full-time MBA participant, Abhinav Budhiraja, shares why he chose to pursue the entrepreneurship specialism at WBS.

Entrepreneurs are not born, they are made.

Regardless of professions, entrepreneurial thinking has become a quintessential skill in today’s innovation economy. An entrepreneurial leader is not only someone who starts a business. An entrepreneurial leader is someone who is passionate to build something new, excited about challenges, flexible to adapt and confident to articulate their vision. Now, aren’t you an entrepreneur? You are in your interviews at least!

In my tenure of working at India’s leading Automotive manufacturer-Maruti Suzuki, I was responsible for managing supply chain and procurement for multi-industry vendors including family businesses, multinationals and startups across the globe. Nine years of delivering cost reduction and revenue optimization projects with suppliers provided me exposure to all aspects of business functions, honed my stakeholder management abilities and enhanced my analytical thinking. Choosing Warwick Business School (WBS) to further enhance my depth of knowledge and leadership abilities has been one of the best decisions of my life. My desire to explore additional skillsets were heightened when I learnt about the entrepreneurship specialism available with the WBS Full-time MBA.

About 305 million start-ups are currently established annually. Given the disruption startups are creating in every industry, understanding how a startup is created, modelled and scaled for success is critical for every individual. I decided to take up the entrepreneurship specialism for two reasons. Firstly, to gain an entrepreneurial outlook to develop my skills, behavior and personality. Secondly, to spot the right opportunities and cultivate them into results- be it my own startup or my profession.

One can pursue the entrepreneurship specialism at WBS when you opt for the electives – Entrepreneurship New Venture Creation and Entrepreneurial Finance along with focusing your dissertation in the area of entrepreneurship. The three complement one another to provide an enriched learning of how to establish a business opportunity, cultivate the resources/finances and drive growth as the venture blossoms. Being part of this experience not only developed my expertise to add value to companies across different business journeys, but also boosted my knowledge to engage effectively with founders.

The journey of a startup is filled with challenges that require different skillset at every step of the way. The first elective, Entrepreneurship & New Venture creation, explained how to establish a new venture by identifying, evaluating and exploiting the right opportunity. Making informed decisions around team members, available resources, customer focus and organization structure enhanced learning of core modules such as Marketing, Organisational Behavior and Strategy. Panel discussions by eminent entrepreneurs during the elective provided a practical element of resilience and adaptability that underpin the startup journey.

The next module, Entrepreneurial Finance, was equally amazing. While establishing a venture is the first step, the requirement of financing it adequately for success is even more critical. The module integrated funding options ranging from crowdfunding to IPOs along with strategy of each towards the business. Moreover, learning from seasoned VCs, Angels and entrepreneurs through guest lectures gave an all-round perspective about investing. Ending the module with our business pitch to such experienced professionals was exciting and enriching.

Moreover, the specialism gave me the opportunity to practically implement concepts learned in the module in my dissertation. Choosing a consultancy project with a digital manufacturing start-up to define its strategy using design thinking and lean model canvas paved way to new competencies.

In my opinion, being entrepreneurial is not a skill, but a mindset. I recommend the entrepreneurship specialism to all students planning to garner a fresh approach in the current VUCA world.

With only a couple of months left of my MBA journey, I wish it lasted longer. Among others, this is one quote I take away from my entrepreneurship specialism.

“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune”, Jim Rohn.

Find out more about the Full-time MBA programme here

Related Blogs