Conor McCarthy
Business Development Manager at ipTEST
Executive MBA (2018-20)

I have several years’ experience working on product development and enjoy the challenges that come with working on the latest technology. However, to take my career to the next step I needed get a wider understanding of the business environment. My academic background is in science, and I wanted to learn practical commercial skills that would complement my background, allowing me to take on a wider role in the business of science. Warwick Business School (WBS) is uniquely positioned, as it maintains its focus on innovation and change, whilst keeping the practical realities of the business world at the forefront of the teaching programme.

I was first attracted to WBS from their unique programme of ‘professors of practice’ which brings to life many business theories by delivering the teaching through an industry experienced professor. Warwick’s modules cover all of the essential topics needed to succeed in business, but specifically allow specialism in leadership, which was a key factor for me. Another critical aspect for my industry is the rapid growth in emerging markets.

WBS’ lecture theatres are state-of-the-art, and geared towards maximising in-class participation. The facilities are designed to encourage networking with the rest of the cohort and the dedicated meeting and project rooms make it easy to work on group projects.

Whilst demanding and thought-provoking, the lectures are delivered in a way which keep the class engaged the entire time. Weather it is analysing various video excerpts, giving presentations or dissecting real-world case studies, there is plenty of time for the entire cohort to discuss and debate.

The ‘extra’ evening career-focused modules are invaluable. These lectures cover topics such as pay negotiations, career progression and courageous conversations. The variety and quality of the speakers has been impressive and gives another insight for students to get an edge for progressing their career. These lectures are ran outside of the main modules so do not affect the core teaching time. 

Studying for an MBA requires a lot of dedication, particularly to complete the assignments. However, the assignments are set in such a way that the reading materials are practically relevant to my day-to-day role, meaning they add value throughout. The MBA itself is eye-opening in terms of the collective experience of the cohort and how much they can add to your own knowledge.

The support from the careers team is exceptional. They are extremely professional and most importantly are present in person for each day of the module, even Saturdays. They kick off most modules with logistical updates and are constantly present on the WBS portal to answer queries.

They have been particularly helpful for organising rescheduling of modules when you have an unmoveable diary conflict and appreciate that each student is balancing work demands but also a personal life.

Since starting the WBS Executive MBA my confidence and impact within my business has grown significantly. My goal is to leverage this higher level of business acumen to take on larger projects within my business and take full ownership over a high profile strategic operation.

Before starting the MBA I would ensure you have full support from your organisation. They need to be aware of the time out of the office and input proactively into any assignments which would benefit your business.