To mark Fintech Week London, we speak to cyber security specialist and Weekend MBA candidate Chika Eze about blockchain technology and embracing technological disruption in business
Blockchain technology has the potential to completely transform the way businesses handle transactions, and it’s top of mind for cyber security specialist and Weekend MBA candidate Chika Eze. At his recent presentation at Imperial College Business School, Chika showcased the massive change that blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies could potentially have on today’s business world.
From cyber security to fintech
Chika comes from a professional background rooted in cyber security, designing, implementing and managing end-to-end solutions for clients across a range of industries. Currently based in Reading, Chika’s work at one of the Big4 companies is mostly London-based, or wherever his current clients are residing.
It was only until his recent work on the implementation of a global digital security platform that it really dawned on him how emerging technology like blockchain could be used to support and enable banking and financial services.
Seeing the need to change
Chika’s main driver for pursuing an MBA was observing a widening gap between technical managers and business executives in implementing wide-scale future-thinking changes, causing them to fall behind the curve. On one side, he witnessed technical managers with diverse knowledge of technology but little focus on the big picture. In contrast, he saw business executives with strategic vision who often didn’t see the need to innovate, transform their business process and, most importantly, invest in securing their company’s “crown jewels”.
Chika saw many companies only embracing disruption when threatened by start-ups entering their market or when hit by cyber-attacks. For these businesses to innovate proactively, Chika believes it’s time for a new breed of business-technical managers and executives, who are experts in both technology and business strategy. His desire to be at the forefront of this new generation saw Chika turn to higher education to synthesise his technical skills with strategic business knowledge, specifically an MBA.
The MBA is an instrumental tool in building this new breed of business-technical managers – managers who are not only interested in securing a business at reasonable cost but are also active players in achieving the strategic goals of the business. I intend to be at the forefront of this business and technology revolution and I hope to be in a position to help transform this narrative as it unfolds.
On choosing Imperial Weekend MBA
Committed to riding the waves of technological disruption and business innovation, the Imperial MBA was the logical step towards helping Chika achieve his career goals.
I needed an MBA programme that is rooted in technology and how it can be used to transform businesses. I was also looking for a part-time study arrangement that would offer me the same exquisite MBA experience as studying in a full time program without having to leave the UK. And finally, I was on the lookout of schools with a rich array of electives that can be tailored to accelerate me into meeting my career goals. Imperial College Business School satisfied all this criteria. So far, it has exceeded my expectations.
Immediate career impact
The biggest benefit of the Weekend MBA, Chika says, is the ability to immediately apply his learnings to his work in cybersecurity, giving him the opportunity to reflect on what works and what doesn’t. The flexibility of the programme also meant Chika had the ability to study in a dynamic environment such as London while still being able to remain in Reading for his work.
The MBA has made me realise the kind of leader I want to be. Applying learnings from courses such as Organisational Behaviour and Managerial Economics to my work, exemplified me from my peers and positioned me for better roles and opportunities with my previous organisation. I am currently a manager in a Big4 firm and in a way, the MBA contributed to that happening.
On balancing his MBA with his new role, Chika admits that time management has been the central to success. Setting out priorities early on and strict time allocation for his study have been a key for Chika in finding a solid balance between his job and his MBA.
But for Chika, it’s the people in his cohort who have been the highlight of his MBA so far, both in terms of sharing learnings from each other’s experiences, but also in making connections with highly skilled professionals from across the globe.
It’s quite motivating being around young professionals around the globe from various backgrounds with diverse success and challenging stories. The networking opportunity is endless and refreshing.
The MBA in a technological world
With access to the world-class facultys and the very latest research in business, technology and science, fintech-focused MBA candidates like Chika are reshaping their approach to business, technology and innovation, preparing them to drive success in an era of constant fintech disruption.
I would definitely recommend the Imperial MBA. The faculty are really knowledgeable in the technology industry but more importantly, the MBA experience will help translate the fintech expectations into realistic and more strategic goals that will add value to the transforming customer experience.
MBA and Fintech career opportunities: meet Chika and Imperial MBA alumni
Working in Fintech and want to take your business skills to the next level? Take a bold new step in business innovation with the Imperial MBA. Our Recruitment team put on regular meet and greet events with Imperial students and alumni like Chika. Bring your questions and find out how the MBA is equipping candidates with business skills and the innovative edge to become the fintech leaders of tomorrow. Find upcoming events here.