Question: It is 4:30 on Monday afternoon. Your new boss informs you that she wants your report on her desk by 8:00 a.m. tomorrow morning. You have at least six hours of work left on the report, and class starts at 6:00 p.m. What do you do?
The simple answer is that I would attend class and then work through the night (with help from my co-workers, if possible) to complete the report by 8:00 a.m., according to my boss' wishes. Regardless of the effort that would be required, this is the only solution that would satisfy all constituents
The scenario depicted above would not be a unique experience in my career. Throughout my career at [deleted] Consulting and other technology companies, I have managed multiple projects simultaneously, which has required me to balance my workloads to meet deadlines, and to keep in close communication with my supervisors and subordinates to ensure I have enough resources to complete projects within the designated parameters. When I asked my supervisor to write a letter of understanding for my TEMBA application, I mentioned I would be asked to address the above situation in one of the entrance essays. We both agreed this was a realistic scenario, and I assured her that I would work to ensure that my class attendance would not interfere with the quality of my work. Based on our discussion and my performance to date, my supervisor felt that I would be able to effectively manage the task.
During my career with [deleted] Consulting I was a competitive triathlete. My commitment to the sport required me to apply myself to a demanding exercise regimen. While working over 50 hours a week I would rise before dawn to complete one workout session and completed at least one other during lunch or after work. Today I am less focused on competitive athletics, but this experience taught me to strike a balance between meeting my personal needs and excelling in the workplace. Sometimes this level of commitment has meant squeezing every minute of the day to achieve my goals.
Since July [deleted], I have been sharing time between two of my company's offices. An [deleted]-based team of Engineers is building one of the products I manage and a team based in [deleted] is building the other. Working remotely with teams that are in different time zones has produced many situations that have prepared me for challenges that I expect from the TEMBA program. During this experience, I have successfully balanced multiple scheduling conflicts and managed my obligations in both locations for products that are critical to my employer's product suite. Although I have demonstrated my ability to effectively manage both product lines, as a show of commitment to my participation in the TEMBA program, she has agreed to reduce my workload and make my responsibilities less location-dependent to minimize travel demands. By eliminating the need to divide my time and resources between geographically separate product teams I will be able to more effectively strike a balance between my work obligations and the TEMBA program.
More than anything, the given scenario illustrates the critical need for communication between the student and the employer. It is notable that my supervisor realizes how much she has to gain by my participation in the TEMBA program. Not only will the coursework benefit me in my career growth, but it will also make me a more well-rounded, strategic thinking employee, who will be an important participant in the success of the department and growth of the company overall. Moreover, it is likely that my workplace will become a virtual lab for the lessons learned in the TEMBA program.
Over the course of a three-year program there will assuredly be situations that will test my ability to manage my obligations and balance my time between work and study; and I am fortunate that my employer recognizes the value that my education will bring to my role on the job. We made a commitment to one another that we will work together to prevent my coursework from interfering with the quality of my job performance and my interaction with customers; while ensuring that I derive as much knowledge as possible from the TEMBA program.
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