“The impact of my own MBA on my career has been huge,” says Lisa Day, new University of Liverpool Director of Studies for the Liverpool Online MBA.
“It was important in terms of taking my CV to that next level. And it’s fair to say that I did get the £20,000 a year salary increase that a lot of MBA candidates hope for,” said Lisa. “The MBA enabled me to continue in a strategic management role but switch to a completely different industry – from telecoms to banking. In the interview, it was clear that they were looking for someone with a good MBA”.
Earning her MBA through part-time study from the Cranfield School of Management, gave the mother-of-two a taste for academia. “I just got the bug. I wanted to carry on and do a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) or a PhD. The road to academia was paved so when the opportunity came along, I moved into teaching and learning”. After 18 years in management and strategy roles in the UK – in Marks and Spencer, BT and Abbey National (now Santander) – Lisa made her career switch, landing a job as a lecturer at a London university.
“It was a reduction in salary at that point,” said Lisa, “But management was my passion. In the end, for me, the MBA had nothing to do with a salary bump and everything to do with doing the job I love. It opened doors that would not have been open otherwise.”
Lisa lectured on strategic management for nearly eleven years, combining her job with part-time study – first for an MA in Learning & Teaching for Higher Education and then for a PhD focusing on Strategy as Practice. She is due to complete her doctorate, from the University of Bath, UK, in 2017.
“One of the great benefits of part-time study is that you get the best of both worlds. You retain what you have as a practitioner – the ability to make decisions quickly with perhaps limited information – and you acquire the academic side or critical reflection, drawing on different theories and ideas and seeing different perspectives.”
“Those are the senior-level thinking skills that we’re looking to develop in our MBA students.”
What is her vision in her new role? “I want the Liverpool Online MBA to have the recognition it deserves. It offers working professionals a fantastic opportunity: a research-led, world-class management education with the convenience and flexibility of the online format.”