For Cranfield School of Management MBA Candidate, Prashanthi Priyanka Mallypally, there’s a single reason that drove her to one of the oldest business schools in the UK: international exposure.
But she’s also using the degree to discover the passions that will lead her career post-graduation.
"I wanted to scale my experience to international things"
Prashanthi grew up in Hyderabad, India, where she started her business career. For a time, she worked as a management consultant, before founding her own school for three-to-15-year olds.
The Kakatiya School, consisting of 350 students and led by 35 staff members, has been successfully running for three-and-a-half years. Within that time, Prashanthi increased its valuation by 200%.
“A major part of my life was between my school and client organization,” she says. “I did really enjoy my work, both were startups, and it was great to build an organization from scratch. But from the experience I gained, I decided to scale things up a bit.”
Prashanthi’s role as a founder has seen her raise investment, handle building renovation budgets, marketing, and recruitment. She’s also created teaching methods to help develop the skills of the children in her care.
It’s been a demanding and rewarding role, however Prashanthi now has her sights set on global endeavors, particularly the European market. That's why she looked for an MBA.
“My work was very regional—on my resume there was only India,” she adds. “I wanted to scale my experience to international things, so before stepping into an international company I wanted to experience working with people from different cultures.
“I thought an MBA would be the best place and a nice environment where I can experiment before I go in to a bigger company.”
"Cranfield develops leaders"
At Cranfield School of Management, the full-time MBA focuses on 'real-world learning', including courses on international strategy, challenges for leaders, investment, and risk management.
“I chose Cranfield for its rankings and the program structure, which is very interesting because it is focused on leadership and development rather than just academic models,” Prashanthi says.
“It has a small cohort size. It is a manageable level where we get to interact with everyone in the class both on a personal and a professional manner. You can talk to any person and learn, as the contact is very easy in a small cohort.”
Eight months into her course, Prashanthi already sees herself as a leader. “Cranfield develops leaders; it’s for people who want to go to that level. If you work on yourself, you will get ahead,” she says.
Prashanthi’s business school journey has allowed her to develop her own skills and develop a strong network. She hopes to come out of it with a clearer idea of individuality as an entrepreneur.
“I came to an MBA to understand more about myself and what I’d really love to do. I don’t want to be stuck in a 9-to-5 I’m not interested in,” she says.
"I achieved an all-round development through the MBA"
Prashanthi is now considering her options. From her experience on the Cranfield full-time MBA, she says she’s well-prepared for a variety of career paths.
“The Cranfield MBA helped me in self-awareness, my learning style and leadership style, and to develop knowledge in different functions and industries. When I take up a job in sales or marketing [for example], in addition to the knowledge in the sector, I now have knowledge in HR or finance or operations,” she says.
“I can say that I achieved an all-round development through the MBA.”