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Dorothea Edet, Master of Business Administration (MBA) Chinese Business Practice

Dorothea returned to education to broaden her knowledge and develop her understanding of Chinese culture and business

After an 11 year gap from education, she chose our Master of Business Administration (MBA) Chinese Business Practice to do just that.

New direction

"I decided to return to study to broaden my understanding of the ebbs and flows of business, acquire a broader knowledge of various business components and obtain key tools needed for my personal growth. I was happy in my life but decided I needed a boost, a new direction so to speak. I felt that if I did nothing I would continue to be content but would stagnate."

Dorothea believes it is crucial to have a good basic understanding of all major business nations, as well as any country which is making waves and look at why. "China has become pivotal in the world business and economic arena, its economic decisions have short, medium and long term ramifications for the rest of the world, just as the decisions of the US, Europe and even Russia does."

Realising a dream

The first semester of the course is taught at LSBU with the second based at Shanghai Normal University. As a long-time admirer of Chinese culture, Dorothea now finally had the opportunity to visit China for three months. "This was my first visit to China but I have dreamt of going many times before. I have always loved Chinese furniture, clothes, and martial arts – I wanted to be a ninja and a Samurai warrior when I was a kid. Now I have had a growing interest in Chinese philosophies which do contradict a lot of what I know and believe in."

The time in Shanghai wasn't all plain sailing for Dorothea who described it as: "A rollercoaster of a ride, frenetic, electric and a melting pot of the good, the bad, the ugly and the pretty amazing!"

In order to make the most of the course and the time in China, Dorothea believes it is vital to make a real effort to learn Mandarin. "Do not underestimate how important it is to have a decent grounding in Mandarin. In order to make friends in general, in business and to build trust you need to at least show that you have made the effort to learn the language. You cannot fully learn the culture unless you have an understanding of the language. Embrace learning Mandarin and know that it is a lifelong endeavour to learn the language, especially the art of character writing."

Confidence

"I really enjoyed going back to study after 11 years and challenging myself not only to keep up with the course but also challenge myself to integrate my life experiences with my studies. I ended up enjoying all the courses and as most of them were new to me I learnt so much. When you appreciate how applicable the modules have been in your work life it's pretty cool to realise that you have something to give, something interesting and valid to offer in discussions."

Next steps

She has already been approached by two Chinese individuals who heard her talking about her business plan and wanted to invest or be her Chinese partner – which can be a crucial addition to any small, new foreign business considering setting up in China. "This program has given me the confidence to know that I could do it. The knowledge is continual, you never stop learning as China and business never stops evolving. I have gained a deeper understanding of business in China and knowing it can be done."

 
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