Name : Burhanudin Noordin Ali
Age : 38
Qualifications : MBA with Distinction, University of Strathclyde (2014)
Job title : Vice President Aerospace and Defence
Employer : Contraves Advanced Devices Sdn Bhd
Having this qualification is all that I imagined it to be because it allowed me to equip myself with the necessary business management skills to progress further in my career. The combination of my prior technical experience and the MBA provides a strategic advantage in the operation and management of any organisation. It has certainly opened doors in terms of career progression and opportunities.
There were a number of institutions in the Klang Valley that offered an MBA program. I wanted an MBA from a reputable university. The triple accreditation and the availability of experienced faculty members from the UK, weighed heavily in influencing my decision to go with University of Strathclyde. I was convinced that the Strathclyde MBA programme provided value-for-money education. The knowledge and skills I have gained through the MBA programme has certainly helped in the overall management of my business division. The part-time MBA program offered suits my schedule as a working professional. Weekdays were primarily focused on work while most weekends were devoted to my studies. The Strathclyde MBA is regarded as one of the best in the world specialising in Corporate Strategy and in addition to learning business management fundamentals such as Finance, Accounting, Marketing, Human Resource, and Operations, the MBA program focuses on Strategic Management
I enrolled into the MBA programme after having 14 years of work experience under my belt. In my opinion, a certain level of maturity and working experience is needed in order to understand the relevance and value of a postgraduate course. Personally, the timing was right as I was transitioning between a technical role to a management role in my career. I would be lying if I said that I did not have problems adjusting to studying again. Pursuing a part-time MBA course meant spending most weekends and evenings attending classes and completing assignments. Juggling between work, studies, and family life was a real challenge. I had to adapt and divide my time accordingly every single day. Being a very disciplined and structured person certainly helps. I also had my wife to thank for being so supportive and understanding while I was pursuing my MBA.
Burhanudin pictured with his wife at MBA Graduation
The best bits of the programme is where real life case studies demonstrated how theoretical knowledge can be applied in certain business areas. I also enjoyed the group work, which allowed the exchange of different ideas, different point of views, and gave us the opportunity to learn from the experiences of others. The course facilitated the development of a network of new contacts. Throughout the MBA program, we have shared heated debates, sleepless nights, disappointments, life experiences, laughters, and joys of success…..all of which have led to the development friendships that would last a lifetime.
I am currently managing and leading the Aerospace and Defence (A & D) division in the company I work for. I am responsible to manage the production and delivery of critical aerospace and defence systems and components to some of the world’s largest A & D organisations whilst ensuring profitability of the business. The knowledge I have gained from the MBA programme have certainly helped in terms of business planning, management, and operations of the division.
The MBA course had certainly made a positive impact on my professional and personal life. At work, the awareness and knowledge that came with the MBA had influence my decision-making and management approach. My advice to those who aspire to do an MBA is to “Do it!”. It is a worthwhile and life-enriching experience. Completing an MBA requires perseverance and hard work. Enjoy the educational journey, make friends, and do not give up!