LBS Sloan Masters in Leadership and Strategy Student Interview

Naren from LBSGet ready to read about Narendhar Sunkisala’s b-school adventure at London Business School’s Sloan Masters in Leadership & Strategy Program – here and on his blog My Journey to Admission in London Business School. Thank you Naren for sharing your story with us!

Accepted: First, can you tell us about yourself: Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad?

Narendhar: I was born and brought up in Godavarikhani, a small town located in Andhra Pradesh, India. I completed my Bachelors in Electronics & Communication Engineering (ECE) from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Kakinada (Andhra Pradesh, India) in the year June 2000. Over the last 12 years I worked extensively in the Information & Communications Technology (ICT) Industry in diverse roles across the globe.

I enjoy traveling, reading, playing tennis, cycling, cooking and lately blogging.

Accepted: Why did you choose to attend London’s Sloan Fellows Program? (In other words, why pursue the degree and why London?)

Narendhar: Management is what I liked inherently ever since I was in college. In 2008, after gaining some work experience, I started researching for a 1 year management program. I first heard about the Sloan Masters at London Business School (LBS) when one of my ex-managers joined this program. After doing a lot of research about Sloan Program, I decided that Sloan Masters in Leadership and Strategy at LBS is the ideal program for me for the following reasons:

•   Curriculum fit with my objectives: This program has several courses that would enable me to realize my career goals.
•   Class maturity: Sloan students at LBS come with an average of 16 years’ experience and are already accomplished professionals in their industry.
•   School credentials: LBS has been consistently ranked among the top b-schools in the world.
•   Value for money: The fee at LBS is the lowest of all three Sloan programs offered worldwide at LBS, MIT Sloan and Stanford.

Accepted: What is your current job? Do you plan on continuing in that industry/function after you receive your Sloan MSc or switching careers?

Narendhar: I am currently working as a Principal in Telecom Practice based out of Melbourne with Infosys Limited, Australia. I work in consulting roles with telecom service providers in the Australia and New Zealand region.

Consulting and Product Strategy are two key functions I worked in all through my career. Post Sloan program, I would like to continue in the same industry and would like to transition into leadership roles in strategy in IT Product/Telecom companies.

Accepted: It looks like you’ve lived/worked/studied all over the world. Where do you think you’ll end up long-term, or do you plan on continuing to globe-trot?

Narendhar: Travel is something that I enjoy personally as it gives opportunities to meet new people, visit new places and experience different cultures.

However I am more keen about the role I would get than the geography. I would like to get into a role where I can apply the skills acquired during the program. In the long term I would like to settle in India.

Accepted: As a successful applicant to a top program, you must have some good admissions advice. What would you say are your top three tips for Sloan MSc or MBA applicants?

Narendhar: In my opinion, applicants have to spend quality time on the following (assuming GMAT is done at this stage):

1. First jot down your career goals. Think objectively to see if an MBA program will help you get there. This clarity is important for sustained motivation.
2. Find a school/program that helps you achieve your goals. Do thorough research on school websites (course details, faculty, class profile, career reports, research centers etc), attend information sessions, and talk to admissions officers, current students and alumni.
3. Be honest and accurate in your essays. It is important to demonstrate that you bring in a breadth of experience and quote relevant examples from different projects/instances spanning your entire career.

Accepted: Why did you decide to blog about your experience?  

Narendhar: When I started my application process for Sloan, the primary source of information was the school website. I wanted to get more insight into the actual student experiences right from the application stage to what goes on during the 1 year at school. While I could find a few articles here and there, I could not find everything at one place. The idea of this blog is to share the information, resources combined with my experiences with prospective students.

I am glad that a lot of prospective students are finding this blog informative and useful. As of today this blog is followed by readers across 48 countries.

I also do career counseling as a hobby. I am providing a starting point to prospective students through this blog.

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