Graduation stories – MBA to Vice-President30 August 2013
Amanda Robertson studied the Abertay MBA course part-time, balancing her studies with a demanding full-time job and a young family.
Broadening her business expertise allowed her to rapidly climb the ranks of Stoneridge Electronics, from a sales and marketing background to becoming Vice President – Aftermarket Sales. We caught up with Amanda to find out more.
The MBA is now delivered in flexible four-week blocks – visit the MBA course page to find out more.
“The location and part-time structure of the Abertay MBA attracted me to the course, allowing me to work full-time and still attend classes.
“Online courses with other universities were available, but I knew that this wouldn’t suit me as I would always find it easy to delay studying instead of having fixed classes to attend, I find it easier to understand the subject if being communicated face-to-face, and the interaction with other students helps enhance the learning.
“When I started the MBA, my two girls were aged 2 and 3 and my job at the time also meant some European travel. It was therefore crucial that I was able to combine study with my work and family life. To be honest, it was actually easier at that age as they went to bed so early that it freed time for studying.
“However, it was funny to read my eldest daughter’s ‘weekend diary’ from school where in my final semester she had written, ‘Mummy was studying so we weren’t allowed to disturb her, unless it was to ask if she wanted a cup of tea’!”
From MBA to Vice-President
“In my second year, I moved from being European Marketing Manager to Head of Engineering. Although I did not have a technical background, the company felt that my general business acumen would help overcome some of the issues that faced the Engineering team at that point. The Change Management module certainly helped at that point!
“Then in my final semester, the Managing Director left the business and through a business restructure and I was promoted to the Global Directors Team in Stoneridge Electronics. As Vice President – Aftermarket Sales I have responsibility of staff in the UK, France, Spain, Italy, Sweden, Russia and Brazil and setting the global strategy for the aftermarket.”
Building business links
“The added benefit of attending a local university is also the contacts you make with the university staff. This has led to Stoneridge being involved in Abertay’s Innovation for Global Growth event.
“I was also asked to talk at a Business Breakfast by Abertay, and through this gained contact with the Chief Executive of Dundee and Angus Chamber of Commerce who was also a guest speaker and we have since met to discuss local business.
“I believe that Stoneridge will benefit from me having closer links to the university going forward.”
You can learn more about Amanda’s course, and the flexible study options, on the MBA page.