Portrait of Priyanka

“The Copenhagen MBA was an extraordinary year in my life”

Alumna Priyanka Bansal began her career in India, came to Copenhagen as a consultant in 2011, completed an MBA in 2012 and now works for Ikea. Here, she explains how the Copenhagen MBA provided extraordinary growth and revealed new career interests.

When I embarked on my career in 2004, I was a engineering graduate fresh from a top university in India. I started out as a software engineer in my first year, but I figured that business – or more specifically, finance – was closer to my heart. I discussed with my then-employer if I could jump into a finance consulting role, but since I didn’t have the relevant educational background, it became too much of a stretch for them to take the leap.

Nonetheless, I managed to convince them into offering me business consulting in the second year. That was the first game-changer in my career. I started to travel internationally, consulting for several Fortune-500 clients around the world, working on establishing their best practices in Customer Relationship Management. Years went by.

I started to enjoy global business consulting, living and working in different countries, and learning and growing as I met different people from a variety of backgrounds, cultures and experiences. My dream of getting a business education stayed alive in the background, but I never really took a serious look at it again – until 2011. Back then, when I was on a consulting assignment in Denmark, my dream started to take shape. Together with a friend, I prepared for the GMAT, and – voilà– a year later, we were both enrolled in the Copenhagen full-time MBA class of 2012-13.

The MBA was an extraordinary year in my life. It gave me a new injection of energy, immense knowledge on subjects, old and new, and fantastic times with many highly skilled people. The growth and learning curve in that one year was, to say the least, phenomenal. The MBA also revealed a new side of me. I realised that it was indeed a wider variety of subjects that I liked, such as corporate finance, management accounting, change management, strategy, economics and leadership development.

It was a wonderful year, one where we did all the ‘hard’ work and dreamed of pivoting this into a new life.

Seven years out of the MBA, I now am slightly closer to a corporate finance role, responsible for securing and implementing a corporate Portfolio Management Office for my company. The MBA studies gave me the confidence to participate in any business discussion at all levels be they strategic, tactical or operational, and that, I believe, is a big strength. While I am cautious about using the term ‘MBA’ in my work-environment – which is primarily influenced by the local culture – I certainly put into practice the things that I learnt in that wonderful year of 2012-13.