Feeling uncomfortable but doing it anyway

I attended the AGSM New Students Day yesterday. I met graduates and faculty as well as some of my fellow students.

There was an fun little moment were we had to congratulate ourselves and each other on getting in. How the students reacted was interesting. There were those (mainly marketing types) who got into it. There were some who refused to do the “silly” bit – must be the accountants. Then there were the one’s who were obviously uncomfortable but did the exercise anyway. I realised that I want to get to know that group. These are people who are out of their comfort zone, but willing to try something new in the hope or belief they’ll learn or grow.

I’m not sure how to deal with the one’s who withheld participation. On the one hand they are confident enough in themselves to march to their own beat. But did that mean they were more scared of appearing stupid? Or were they that pragmatic that they didn’t want to do any of that feely-touchy stuff? Either way I can find that sort in most places and my initial reaction is to avoid them as inflexible.

Obviously I can get along famously with the party animals who’ll try anything in case it’s fun.

Interestingly I’ve decided to kick off the MBA with only one subject Accounting and Financial Management. One of the adjunct faculty members said she got the least value out of the term when she did two subjects. All she focused on as doing the required reading and barely kept up. She was aiming for internalising the subjects. Really considering the issues and allowing herself to come up with her own thoughts and attitudes on the subject.

Another vote for “the MBA is the journey” school of thought – which I am rapidly converting to. Who cares if it takes me longer to finish if I am changed by the experience. Heaven forbid I do all this work and all this study to emerge as the same person and the same skills as I started with.

This will be a life-changing experience.


2 responses to “Feeling uncomfortable but doing it anyway”

  1. Aside from those who were into congratulating themselves and those who weren’t, what’s your initial impression of the group in terms of age, gender mix, background (educational and professional)? M

  2. Hi Mark,

    Thanks for the question. I was told they were expecting about 150 students on Saturday, and I think about 120 showed up. AGSM keeps statistical data that is available later. My anecdotal thoughts follow.

    The age range was spread nicely around although skewed to the 30-35 age range. I didn’t notice too many really young people.

    Women seemed to be about a third of those present. Which I’m told is an increase from last term.

    Professionally I encountered lots of bankers and telecoms executives, but also consultants, non-profits, HR and self-employed.

    Surprisingly, ethnically there were more Southern Asians than South Eastern Asians although I encountered students from around the world.

    Being an Executive MBA everyone had a job in Australia.

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