I believe there are definite advantages to being a Weekend Executive MBA student—from both a personal and professional perspective—and the program format encourages us to learn soft skills and hard skills. Some specific advantages and lessons that have impacted me are:

3 perks to being a Weekend Executive MBA student:

  1. Being able to learn from and apply lessons from classmates’ real-world experiences in various professions.
  2. I found that the only place and way to meet, interact and learn from the elite crowd in this universe is through networking at MBA schools like The Fuqua School of Business.
  3. I have the opportunity to learn from an MBA program that is equivalent to a full-time MBA, while still working—this is rare. Duke’s Weekend Executive MBA program is very special, and the courses are comparable to those in the full-time, Daytime MBA program.

3 things I learned about teamwork:

  1. Fully listen to teammates first and then analyze.
  2. Define the end goal and stay on track throughout the journey by properly prioritizing your tasks
  3. Deliver the best output collaboratively, as a whole team.

3 things I learned about leadership:

  1. There are different, definable, and established leadership styles. Each style includes different approaches that are based on research. I learned about the different styles and how to apply them in the real-world.
  2. Take short-term and long-term goal setting more seriously.
  3. There’s value in a personal development plan. Creating a personal development plan helped me to bring more value to my entire community, and my professional and personal life. With the plan, I learned how to achieve more in my life.

3 things I learned about professional development:

  1. I learned to enjoy the path, the journey, and not just the reward. The journey matters and helped me to grow as a person both professionally and personally.
  2. It’s important to ask questions. If you practice asking questions, and get good at it, you will bring an “Aladdin” factor to your job search. I realized this when I interacted with my career coach. Your coach can’t help you to find potential jobs unless you ask about the possibilities.
  3. Write thank you emails and notes. After any networking opportunity, informal or formal, sending a follow-up note can have a long lasting effect. This note needs to be very thoughtful, though.