Birmingham native Andy Tromans quit a management job at the Wall Street Institute language school in Rome to return to the Midlands for an MBA at Aston Business School. He tells us why!
Andy developed a love of languages while at the University of Wales, Swansea. After a year abroad in Lyon during his undergraduate studies, he went to Italy to learn Italian at language school. He then went to work at the Wall Street Institute as a teacher and, eventually, a centre manager.
The Wall Street Institute is one of the world’s largest providers of English language instruction, with over 400 centres in 28 countries. Andy taught for a year and eventually became the manager of a language centre in Rome. Next, he was promoted to the flailing flagship centre in Rome, and finally he was made regional manager.
However much Andy loved living in Italy he says that “living in Rome is difficult. Meritocracy doesn’t really exist, salaries are low and jobs are precarious as there are either fixed contracts where you can’t get sacked, or contracts that aren’t worth the paper they are written on.”
In his role as Regional Service Manager Andy was having to go to many language schools and examine business models, advertising and management theory such as organisational behaviour, leadership and HR. “I was really enjoying it but I felt it needed a bit more theory to balance it so thought about an MBA. I also thought an MBA would open doors that previously would be closed.”
Andy mulled the idea of an MBA for a couple of years and when he decided to take the plunge, for financial reasons, he had to live at home outside Birmingham. “I went to Aston and also Birmingham business school to talk about the course. And I really liked the informal, friendly atmosphere of Aston from the first interview and walking around the business school.”
The Aston MBA for Andy was “an amazing experience; looking back on it you forget the stress and anxiety of coursework. I loved the course content and with so many international students you got to see how different cultures work and approach problem solving.”
For the final live consultancy MBA project Andy worked for an IT consultancy company. “They wanted to have more informed options to make decisions, as a new company they followed their intuition and so I implemented a few new models and frameworks.”
Andy was hired by Aston business school to consult them on a marketing assignment and is searching for a more permanent role. “I would like a role as a consultant, in strategy and business development in any sector really. What I am finding is that there are jobs out there but employers are more specific. Square peg square hole.” But the job will have to be in the UK as Andy says he needs a British salary.
He is currently in talks with a major European Bank in Birmingham for a position as an internal consultant, after Aston Business School put him in touch with the CEO of the Bank's Europe offices.