mba survival guide

A Survival Guide to the MBA Galaxy

Olafur Arnarsson offers a glimpse into the day of a typical Copenhagen MBA student and shares his MBA survival guide.

The first days of the Copenhagen MBA are intense, and you will spend a lot of energy taking it all in. How to survive this onslaught of new impressions, academic pressures and rigorous demands on your time? By managing your energy levels wisely. I am now in my eighth week of the MBA and, to be honest, my energy levels fluctuate up, down, and sideways. Some days the energy levels are high and other very low. This is normal, and our people (meaning the administration) at CBS have experienced this phenomenon many times with previous MBA candidates.

I have never heard about any MBA candidate that didn’t survive this one-year program, so don’t worry; it will be an amazing journey.

One of the biggest challenges is how to organize your time and what tools to bring out to tackle this task. To that end, I am going to share my MBA survival guide with you and let you in on how I organize my time and how I prioritize.

Here are the tools you need to bring with you to the Copenhagen MBA; what I like to call the 8Ks:

1.       Know yourself

2.       Know how you recover your energy physically and mentally

3.       Know how to listen to your body and soul

4.       Know your limits

5.       Know how to disconnect

6.       Know how to tell your brain positive stories

7.       Know how to work in teams

8.       Know how to be nice

If you already possess these tools in your toolbox, then you are more than ready for the MBA journey, sit back and enjoy the ride.

We all know that there are only 24 hours in one day, so how do we get the most out of these 24 hours?

Let’s explore a normal day at the MBA.

1.       Recommended sleep: 7-8 hours

2.       Travel time to and from CBS: 1 hour

3.       MBA classes: 7 hours

4.       Teamwork or group studies: 1 hour

5.       Reading preparation for class: 2 hours

The Copenhagen MBA will consume 10-11 hours of your day, so my advice to you is to use the remaining 5-6 hours well, and prioritize your time as best you can to add value and achieve quality of life.

Then there is always the weekend to catch up with friends and family and enjoy Copenhagen.

Olafur comes from a small fishing village in southwestern Iceland, his last position was Managing Director of an aquaculture company in the country.