MBA student perspective series : Pejman, MBA candidate at Haas, shares his first hand experiences about MBA life

Hey all,



Am so excited to post the 1st ever interview with a current MBA student on my blog. To begin with I have with me Mr. Pejman, MBA candidate at Haas school of Business and Co-founder of GMAT prep site "Magoosh".

In this fun chat, Pejman will share his thoughts about MBA, Career, B school, Magoosh and more. Hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed doing this interview.

             Madz : Hey Pejman, welcome and a big thanks for coming up to share your perspective with me and my blog readers. Please introduce yourselves to our readers. Tell us briefly about your educational and professional background.

Pejman : Hi everyone, my name is Pejman Pour-Moezzi. I am a second-year full-time MBA at Haas-Berkeley. Prior to Haas, I was a consultant at Deloitte in the technology practice and prior to that I studied and graduated with a BA in Cognitive Science at UC Berkeley. Most recently, I have co-founded the online test prep company Magoosh.
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Madz : Why did you decide to pursue your MBA?
Pejman : While consulting was cool, and I certainly learned a lot, my clients were mostly in the public sector and healthcare space – not exactly known for being at the bleeding edge of technology. My undergrad had equipped me with skills and interest in design and user experience and I felt like I could best leverage this experience in consumer technologies. I’m pursuing an MBA to prepare myself for this transition by building out my skill set, particularly in strategic marketing and opportunity recognition.
      Madz :  Tell us about your MBA experiences thus far.

Pejman :The experience has been awesome. It kicked off lightning quick with classes and club/social activities; so much so that it was a bit overwhelming but once you catch your breath you realize that it allows a tight-knit community to quickly form. With Haas being so small (~240 per class year), I love walking onto campus and knowing everyone I see. At the same time we’re part of a huge, world-class university so there’s really no limit to opportunities.

       Madz : How is active participation in campus organizations contributing to your MBA experience?

Pejman :Getting involved with organizations is key in my opinion. But I think this is an example of where the “less is more” philosophy applies – pick one or two groups and go deep. Having done just that with Berkeley’s Digital Media and Entertainment Club (DMEC) has helped me build strong industry contacts and knowledge. Our big annual event, the >play conference, is just around the corner – I definitely recommend checking it out!

      Madz : In retrospect, what do you know now that you wish you knew before you pursued your business education?

Pejman :One thing that seems consistently true but that people have a hard time coming to terms with is how quickly time passes by. Your MBA experience will be over before you know it and while it is a great place to “find yourself,” the more time you can spend defining priorities in advance of the MBA the better off you’ll be. I share this after observing so many classmates with start-up ambitions that are feeling the pressure of graduation looming around the corner. If you can come in with an idea already well formed and ready to execute you can really take advantage of your two years.

           MadzWhat factors should prospective students consider when choosing an MBA program?

Pejman :The different programs out there vary greatly in terms of strengths and culture – which is great as people are just as varied. Make sure you take the time to get to know the programs to find your best fit. Don’t just go off rankings!

           Madz : How available are internships and other hands-on student experiences? Any tips for landing?

Pejman :Recruiting, in my opinion, is less about resumes and cover letters and more about connecting with people. The most successful applicants have already networked with several people at a prospective employer, learning the intangibles about a company’s culture and as a result appear as more than just another data point on a recruiting roster.

      Madz : Tell us about your entrepreneurial business career. How did you initially get involved in Test Preparation Business “Magoosh”?
      Pejman :My friend, Vikram, and I formed Magoosh after our experiences with taking the GMAT. We saw an opportunity to utilize technology to deliver an educational experience more dynamic than a book and lower in cost than a classroom. We built Magoosh on the idea that “practice makes perfect.” Instead of forcing students through hour-long lectures, we believed the student is most successful when they learn by doing. So our platform is built around practice problems and keeping students active. We give the student hundreds of practice problems just like the ones they’ll encounter on the actual exam. By providing video explanations on every practice problem, the student learns salient lessons at moments of high concentration. The feedback so far has been phenomenal and we’re looking forward to improving the experience even more.
            Madz :How has your business education benefited your entrepreneurial career thus far and vice versa?

      Pejman :Lessons in customer development, rapid prototyping and business model innovation have been huge. In many ways the lessons I’m learning are very counter-culture to what people think of as traditional business education – but I can tell you that Haas has helped me develop these skills, so it’s good to check assumptions!

Madz : Anything else you want to share with our readers.

      Pejman :Take some time out to reflect on things – make it a habit. Success is less about horsepower and more about focus. The more genuine your goals are the more successful you’ll be!

It was a fun and informative experience talking to Pejman. You can visit his Linked In profile here. If you want to know more about Magoosh or enroll to its services visit http://www.magoosh.com


Hope you enjoyed reading this post. Be sure to leave your opinion !!

--
Madz



2 comments:

kiramatali shah said...

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way2 college said...

Investment in a Business Management program is much more beneficial compared to investment in other academic programs. Perhaps, more so in the current situation of recession. Thanks for sharing a nice information.
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