My experience prior to enrolment in Seoul business school includes everything I need to succeed in the program and later on – technical expertise, leadership challenges, and work in multicultural environments. The course in Seoul business school will surely help me to take these skills to a new level and build on that course as yet another prerequisite for a successful career.
Since my background is in IT, I started to build my professional career with gaining technical skills in the area I believe to be the most crucial in propelling global growth and spearheading development. Working for 7.5 years as a technical project manager at the Bank of America in Korea, I accumulated substantial knowledge in my specific area.
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Being a highly qualified professional, I was appointed to supervise a project that involved IT specialists from both European and Asian branches of the company. With the environment being multiethnic, multilingual and multicultural, I found myself at the crossing point of various perspectives, viewpoints and ways of doing business.
At this point, I realized that the main focus of project management was not technical expertise that I had already begun to take for granted, but business communication skills specifically attuned to multicultural environments in global companies. Grasping intuitively for ways to bring the maximum efficiency to the project, I found gaps in my cross-cultural education and management skills.
Relying on my traditionally strong problem-solving skills, I was able to resolve most situations, but each time I came across a management problem, I felt that I could do better than before with help from a knowledgeable instructor. Since trying to do my best is one of my inherent traits as a professional, I decided to leverage my experience with the help of an education, which is the reason why I decided to pursue a new course in international management to help me advance the business side of my work.
This international focus is the reason why I chose Seoul business school, renowned for its international student body and diversity of program. I was impressed with the well-balanced curriculum of the school that provides intensive training in strategic management, building in students skills applicable in any part of the globe.
During my studies, I hope to make a breakthrough in my understanding of international management and learn from students with diverse backgrounds, incorporating their perspectives and transforming them into my own unique management style.
I do not expect ready-made answers from my business studies – instead, I am seeking a chance to rise above my current level with the help of new knowledge and take a bird’s-eye view of my future career path and goals. With the impact of a quality business education program, I am sure to attain new horizons in my career, becoming a successful international leader.
With my previous experience in leading projects and motivating people, I feel that I will be able to incorporate the elements of the program to achieve success in any future endeavours.
2) Tell us about a time when you came up with an innovative solution to a challenge or problem.
Most would think that IT jobs are mechanical and boring, leaving room for creativity. In my experience, however, I found that the greatest challenge is not the technical problems that can be overcome after some careful thinking; people, on the contrary, are an ongoing challenge as they generate all kinds of surprises.
Dealing with my IT staff, I had to bring up all my creative potential to help our employees open up THEIR potential for creativity, problem-solving and other skills.
Empowering IT employees was my greatest challenge since we all spent an enormous time sifting through petty technical problems. Forcing subordinates to run and check with me every small detail was consuming a lot of my time that could have been used for better purposes. At one point, I became so exhausted with the process that I felt some sort of solution was necessary to relieve them of the fear to make the decision on their own.
Teaching them to progress slowly seemed a good idea which led me to instruct them to solve at least one problem a day on their own, selecting from the range of problems they previously reported to me.
At the end of the day, we all had a five-minute assembly in which the team members would share what kind of problems they ventured to solve on their own and what solutions they came up with. It proved that their solutions were for the most part sound, so that our project did not suffer any major disruptions in its functioning.
The greatest asset of my invention was the psychological climate in the team that was suddenly transformed as employees began to sense a change in their role. No longer cogs in the machine, they were now independent thinkers, feeling the drive to expand the boundaries of their knowledge to meet their new function.
To do this, they shared information with each other in more frequent exchanges and would come up to me, but not with the details of a specific problem as before, but with broader questions that gave me a chance to increase their expertise. Our cooperation assumed a more lively character, and I could sense that my employees were now getting more satisfaction from their work.
Little by little, we went from one to two, then to three independently solved problems a day. This change significantly increased the capacity of my subordinates, expanding the productivity of our teams that could now process more tasks in the same limited timeframe. Most importantly, my invention helped to remove the fear of mistake in my subordinates, making them aware of their strengths at problem-solving.
Needless to say, I was deeply satisfied with the results and since then, have continuously been thinking about other possible innovations aimed at employee empowerment. I believe that helping people to bring out their potential is the most rewarding function of the managerial job that is lead to a breakthrough in the project’s chances for success.
3) Tell us about one thing in your personal or professional life for which you have a great deal of passion.
Throughout both my professional and community involvement, I have been trying to make my input valuable by trying assist those who are hampered by disadvantages that are no fault of their own. This can include helping the disabled, the poor, or those living in developing nations. Among the activities in which I engaged with a lot of passion, the memory of volunteer work in an NGO stands out from the rest.
Perhaps the reason is that, in my feeling, with this work I could make a real difference in the lives of many people. I first started volunteering simply out of desire to help a friend working at the same NGO. As I began to see the bigger picture of what they do, I felt the need to make my personal contribution to the lives of people in developing countries.
The work there really kept me in touch with what was going on in the rest of the world where people were less fortunate than myself and offered wonderful opportunities for striking up friendships and making contacts.
Having a successful professional background to draw upon, I felt myself both able and obliged to use my professional expertise to assist the populations of developing countries like Cambodia in improving access to information communication technology in rural and remote areas.
In my view, the capacity to utilise existing and evolving communication possibilities will be the key to these nations bridging the gap between their present condition and the industrialised world. It was exciting to think of how I can use my time and skills to help people around the globe make a transition to the information society which would be the necessary prerequisite for building sustainable economies.
My work in the NGO began from writing an e-mail newsletter and continued with preparation for seminar aimed at raising a subscription. Finally, I saw myself planning new initiatives within the organization to utilise existing capacities in the realm of information technology in order to facilitate information exchange with developing nations. We launched a few projects aimed at giving all people equal opportunities in the realm of information access.
I found working there that with my experience in the field I could often provide other people with advice that helped them to get a more coherent picture of what was going on in information technology and how the organization’s resources in this area could have been used with the maximum efficiency.
I believe that by applying our individual knowledge to help people in the less developed world we can truly make a difference since more affluent societies provide their members with more opportunities to acquire expertise in the professional field.
Once we absorb this professional knowledge, we can use our creativity of our minds to generate new ideas and connect them to the needs of other people. In my volunteer work, I did my best to leverage my previous experience to create a stimulating information-rich environment for other people where they, too, could have used their natural abilities to develop the economies of their nations. My deepest belief in the fundamental right of all people to have equal access to information fuelled my passion for this rewarding work.
4) Please detail the five-year plan for your career including the jobs you would like to have, how you would leverage your education, and how you would otherwise prepare yourself for this path. Tell us why your goals make sense given your plan and your background.
In my post-school years, I am determined to integrate my previous experience with the knowledge obtained in the school to succeed in a career that will incorporate my technical and management skills. Within a five-year timeframe, I hope to become IT consultant in a global company, concentrating on providing top-notch services to customers all around the world.
An education obtained in Seoul Business School will be an important factor in my success as IT consultant. Working in a dynamic, challenging business environment of IT consulting requires continuous improvement of one’s skills, ability to think on one’s heels, out-of-the-box solutions, and ability to meet the most unexpected customer needs.
A broad base of business knowledge I hope to gain from Seoul Business School will enable me to get a deeper insight into the nature of my clients’ businesses and prompt more productive solutions that can advance their operations in innovative, effective ways.
Having a quality educational background to draw upon, I would be able to utilise this knowledge to meet the diversified needs of customers with flexibility and speed, making a contribution to the success of many companies around the globe.
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