UK MBA for a Career in Technology Management within the Finance Sector


Hi,

I graduated from my BSc Comp Sci degree in June 2008. I've been lucky to achieve very rapid, scary-at-times career progression, from being (roughly) a software tester > testing team leader > testing project manager > testing division manager (I manage a group of testing team leads). This hasn't been within 1 company, but it has all been within financial services, which suits me well (it's interesting, challenging, well paid, nice colleagues).

I would like to do an MBA. Why?
1) To solidify the foundation of my "snippets" of business / managerial experience; I'm often described as a natural / quiet / introverted leader, but I know there are gaps in my knowledge, and there are definitely "unknown unknowns"
2) I think it would be very interesting
3) Most relevantly, I have career aspirations towards Senior Management, most likely being a technology leadership position within financial services, as it's where my experience is, and I enjoy (and am good at) it

After re-locating from London, I now live and work in Edinburgh, and have for the last 8 months. I am the main (only) breadwinner, and support my wife financially and physically (she needs my help; would prefer not to reveal details). I could not (would not want to) stop work to complete and MBA. I cannot re-locate away from Edinburgh.

Advantages are that I have unlimited tuition funds to do this; unlimited time (I'm not rushing to get an MBA, I have a great focus on the learning experience; and my employer would support me with some time off for revision and being flexible with hours).

My options are therefore limited to attending a local university for MBA studies, or distance learning (Manchester is the only one on my shortlist so far, having discounted some of the others (e.g. Durham, quite academic; Henley, not enough relevant employer links from what I could tell).

So, I was considering looking into the Executive MBA that Edinburgh University (NOT Herriot Watt) launched last year / 2013, rather than Manchester via Distance Learning.

Questions:
1) Having given an overview of what I hope to achieve, what are the thoughts from the community on this plan? I feel like the accreditation status of Edinburgh Uni, the locality, the pitch of the Exec MBA is all very suited to what I want in terms of a boost into Technology Leadership within Financial Services; but does this ring any alarm bells?
2) Is there anyone on here who's actually on, or seriously considered, the Exec MBA from Edinburgh? If there are (I've searched and not seen a peep!) can you consider sharing your thoughts?
3) Is there anyone here in a similar position to me, career wise, who's done something I've not appeared to consider?

Thank you.

Hi,

I graduated from my BSc Comp Sci degree in June 2008. I've been lucky to achieve very rapid, scary-at-times career progression, from being (roughly) a software tester > testing team leader > testing project manager > testing division manager (I manage a group of testing team leads). This hasn't been within 1 company, but it has all been within financial services, which suits me well (it's interesting, challenging, well paid, nice colleagues).

I would like to do an MBA. Why?
1) To solidify the foundation of my "snippets" of business / managerial experience; I'm often described as a natural / quiet / introverted leader, but I know there are gaps in my knowledge, and there are definitely "unknown unknowns"
2) I think it would be very interesting
3) Most relevantly, I have career aspirations towards Senior Management, most likely being a technology leadership position within financial services, as it's where my experience is, and I enjoy (and am good at) it

After re-locating from London, I now live and work in Edinburgh, and have for the last 8 months. I am the main (only) breadwinner, and support my wife financially and physically (she needs my help; would prefer not to reveal details). I could not (would not want to) stop work to complete and MBA. I cannot re-locate away from Edinburgh.

Advantages are that I have unlimited tuition funds to do this; unlimited time (I'm not rushing to get an MBA, I have a great focus on the learning experience; and my employer would support me with some time off for revision and being flexible with hours).

My options are therefore limited to attending a local university for MBA studies, or distance learning (Manchester is the only one on my shortlist so far, having discounted some of the others (e.g. Durham, quite academic; Henley, not enough relevant employer links from what I could tell).

So, I was considering looking into the Executive MBA that Edinburgh University (NOT Herriot Watt) launched last year / 2013, rather than Manchester via Distance Learning.

Questions:
1) Having given an overview of what I hope to achieve, what are the thoughts from the community on this plan? I feel like the accreditation status of Edinburgh Uni, the locality, the pitch of the Exec MBA is all very suited to what I want in terms of a boost into Technology Leadership within Financial Services; but does this ring any alarm bells?
2) Is there anyone on here who's actually on, or seriously considered, the Exec MBA from Edinburgh? If there are (I've searched and not seen a peep!) can you consider sharing your thoughts?
3) Is there anyone here in a similar position to me, career wise, who's done something I've not appeared to consider?

Thank you.
quote
Duncan

Edinburgh and Strathclyde are the obvious choices. Edinburgh just relaunched its EMBA, so it's a very fresh programme that lacks Strathclyde's larger alumni base. However, the curriculum is perhaps better adapted to your needs. That said, surely Strathclyde has better careers services?

Edinburgh and Strathclyde are the obvious choices. Edinburgh just relaunched its EMBA, so it's a very fresh programme that lacks Strathclyde's larger alumni base. However, the curriculum is perhaps better adapted to your needs. That said, surely Strathclyde has better careers services?
quote

Thank you for the very fast reply (!). I see what you mean about Strathclyde having a larger alumni base, having done some research it seems there are a couple of people in my network (friends of friends) who went there for their MBAs, and it looks better respected than I'd realised. Having said that, the Edinburgh EMBA's course structure/focus looks better suited.

Which has left me with:

Manchester Global MBA (via distance learning)
VS. Edinburgh EMBA (in person, part time)

... as the real dilemma.

One of the things Manchester rates highly on is international repuation/etc which I don't care about. I'm thinking the value of a face-to-face MBA will be much more relevant/useful to me.

On the other hand, Manchester is very well regarded in rankings, very firmly established, so...

I seem to flip flop between which one looks better the more I think about it!

Any advice?

Thank you for the very fast reply (!). I see what you mean about Strathclyde having a larger alumni base, having done some research it seems there are a couple of people in my network (friends of friends) who went there for their MBAs, and it looks better respected than I'd realised. Having said that, the Edinburgh EMBA's course structure/focus looks better suited.

Which has left me with:

Manchester Global MBA (via distance learning)
VS. Edinburgh EMBA (in person, part time)

... as the real dilemma.

One of the things Manchester rates highly on is international repuation/etc which I don't care about. I'm thinking the value of a face-to-face MBA will be much more relevant/useful to me.

On the other hand, Manchester is very well regarded in rankings, very firmly established, so...

I seem to flip flop between which one looks better the more I think about it!

Any advice?
quote
Duncan

The big difference there isn't between the mode but the cohort. The Global MBA at MBS has a very junior cohort, while Edinburgh has an executive cohort (at Manchester, those people are in the GEMBA). Manchester is a very strong brand, but the experience in a triple-crown EMBA will be better.

The big difference there isn't between the mode but the cohort. The Global MBA at MBS has a very junior cohort, while Edinburgh has an executive cohort (at Manchester, those people are in the GEMBA). Manchester is a very strong brand, but the experience in a triple-crown EMBA will be better.
quote

Thank you. Again, speedy and helpful - appreciated.

Thank you. Again, speedy and helpful - appreciated.
quote

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