Ulas Malli

Executive MBA
Job after graduation
Global AI & CVM Senior Manager, Vodafone
Year of graduation
Ulas Malli EMBA Experience blog
Ulaş Malli, Executive MBA 2022
“I decided to study for an Executive MBA at Imperial to enhance my business skillset and advance my career in the technology industry. Specifically, I wanted to develop my strategy, innovation and entrepreneurial knowledge; all areas in which Imperial College excels, making the School a perfect fit for me.”

Read Ulaş' story

Developing my skills

During my 10-year career, I have worked for many different companies in a range of sectors. I am currently working at Vodafone’s London office as a Global Senior Commercial Manager in the Big Data & Artificial Intelligence department.

Throughout my professional life, I have had enormous opportunities to learn different business processes, understand the obstacles and problems that business face, and come up with creative solutions. I have also designed digital tools that develop or transform business processes. Besides this, I have given more than 50 speeches as a public speaker. My stories and speeches were listened to by more than 30,000 people who wanted to learn from my experiences. Some of the topics I have discussed are motivation, the future of business, and technology.

Choosing a university with a global focus

I decided to study for an Executive MBA at Imperial to enhance my business skillset and advance my career in the technology industry. Specifically, I wanted to develop my strategy, innovation and entrepreneurial knowledge; all areas in which Imperial College Business School excels, making the School a perfect fit for me. I have already met people from numerous countries and diverse cultures and begun exchanging different viewpoints on business issues in my classes.

I chose Imperial because I have observed the positive impact and many success stories of the Imperial alumni who are senior executives in many companies globally. I also hope to broaden my international perspective by studying in Berlin and Hong Kong; two cities I have never visited prior to joining Imperial.

After applying, I was absolutely thrilled to be awarded a partial scholarship with Imperial’s Executive MBA programme.

What makes this programme unique

With Imperial’s multiple classes around the globe, flexible curriculum and diverse student body, it is a great place for me to achieve my career objectives. I strongly believe that I will gain a thorough knowledge of essential business disciplines as well as have opportunities to learn more about myself and my managerial style.

In this programme you are exposed to many industries and companies: You don't get the chance to learn so much so broadly in any other programme. As you're studying more than five modules in each term, you learn the value of project and time management. You are forced to prioritise, work smart and plan ahead, as you cannot afford to spend your time inefficiently. Learning how to manage my time effectively to balance my professional and private commitments has been the most challenging part of the programme.

You are also constantly presented with opportunities to network. You meet new people who are students, alumni or academics from the university. Every time you are assigned coursework or projects, you are forced to meet new people from your cohort. Many of these people will become friends, business associates or good contacts for favours further down the line.

Stepping out of my comfort zone

Making the choice to study an Executive MBA programme is difficult for many because it feels like the additional workload will be too much for those in advancing careers. However, the programme is a chance to take a quick detour to explore areas and interests that you may never get the chance to otherwise. The moment you step into the programme is the moment you leave your comfort zone. In each class, we encounter unique situations that call for innovation and open-mindedness. This tests our debate and conflict management skills and these skills are absolutely crucial for our entrepreneurship journey.

Learning the skills that will enable me to achieve my goals

After completing the MBA, my short-term professional goal is to become a commercial director who is in charge of leading AI-driven products and services in my current company. In this position, I am aiming to have end-to-end responsibility for AI-driven products & services from the ideation stage to the go-to-market strategy.

My Executive MBA journey is giving me the knowledge and the skills needed to become a better leader. This programme shows that it takes time, effort and the willingness to continue learning to identify my leadership style and improve my communication skills, etc.

I really enjoy most of the modules like Managerial Economics and Organisational Behaviour, but Marketing has been my favourite topic so far. You can learn a lot about consumer and brand insight strategy, as well as other areas like new product strategy, digital marketing and analytics, which are quite important for my future goals.

Gaining insights through guest lectures

I am proud to be part of Imperial College Business School’s community which enables me to expand my professional network by attending many events and activities. In particular, guest lectures during my MBA journey provide a valuable source of teaching for personal development and bring an added dimension and real-life insights to our teaching activities. I think the lecture on cryptocurrencies which use blockchain technology was quite interesting for me as it helped me to learn how the future will look in terms of financial technologies.

Applying my newfound knowledge and skills

The MBA programme has a creative approach to teaching. Each module uses a range of videos and case studies which allow students to apply their learning to real-life scenarios. I have been applying the new leadership techniques I have learned to create responses to real-life problems.

My experience studying with an extremely diverse cohort

Perhaps the best part of the MBA programme is learning how to work with a truly diverse cohort of people of all different backgrounds, interests and ambitions. I think all those differences are highly important for MBA students who can analyse many perspectives and life experiences that have been brought to the classes from all over the world.

I believe that the most valuable part of the group work experience is the support you get from and give to, one another. No one is strong in every subject, nor does anyone have experience in everything. Therefore, the success of this journey is highly dependent on the group projects. I am learning a lot about myself and my colleagues in the process.

Developing a global business perspective

The global elements of my programme are super exciting for me because I have been studying various topics which are helping me to develop different skills such as leadership, collaborative style, analytical intelligence, creativity and global awareness.

The Executive Leadership Journey

Imperial’s comprehensive programme for Executive Leadership is quite interesting. The programme is designed to teach how to implement effective and collaborative leadership in businesses and harness the capabilities and potential of teams and other colleagues. The programme helps you to focus on developing your own leadership capabilities, as well as exploring team working for competitive advantage, change and renewal.

Making the most of living in London

My favourite things to do in London are exploring new and historical attractions, attending many sports events and visiting the amazing green spaces/parks around the city. I really enjoy taking a walk around Hyde Park after classes on the South Kensington campus.

My advice for future applicants

The Executive MBA is a great stepping-stone for advancing one’s career. You should think about your end goal before applying for the programme. You should also think about the needs of your family members before applying for the programme because it is obvious that the MBA journey requires quite a lot of effort and time to get the full benefits from it. If you know how to manage your time, you will find yourself achieving tasks more efficiently. After taking the decision to start this amazing journey, take advantage of the networking opportunities of an Executive MBA programme and learn as much as you can from your peers!

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