Tariro Matanga is the founder and director of Esperer, a wholesale pharmacy business exporting pharmaceutical products from the UK to Africa.
A trained pharmacist, she wants to pursue an MBA to learn the skills she needs to develop her business.
For the determined entrepreneur, international business school INSEAD is the only choice.
What do you hope to gain from an MBA?
I am looking for a new way to challenge and re-invent myself.
I trained as a pharmacist and, although the work is stimulating, I consider myself to be more of an entrepreneurial person. My undergraduate degree didn’t have a core business foundation and I want to learn more about business and finance. An MBA will give me a chance to fill that gap.
Why have you chosen to study at INSEAD in particular?
INSEAD is an international school with a strong network of alumni. I like the fact that the program is structured as an intense 10 months MBA.
The fact that INSEAD has two international campuses also appeals to me and I would love to have the opportunity to spend time in France and Singapore. I was also looking for a school with a strong reputation, which focuses on entrepreneurship. INSEAD seems like the right choice.
I love taking up a challenge and I am good at juggling many things at the same time, so I think I will fit in well with the INSEAD way of life.
What has been the biggest challenge in the application process so far?
Writing my essays has been the biggest challenge, but also giving up my free time to study for my GMAT has been difficult. It seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day!
How are you preparing for the GMAT?
I’m being helped by a private tutor who’s helping me work on my weaknesses. I am also doing the Manhattan practice tests, reading blogs on GMAT websites, and listening to webinars on certain subjects. I have dedicated about 120 hours to prepare for the exam and identify what I need to do to get a top score.
How do you plan to fund your MBA?
I plan to use my savings, apply for a scholarship and also apply for a loan.
What are your future career plans?
My 5-year plan is to run my wholesale pharmacy business full-time in Nairobi. Currently, I am still in the initial stages of the business where I am forming relationships with future clients and future suppliers.
I am also thinking about doing a summer placement while pursuing an MBA, to keep my options open.