Spotlight on Excellence

image MJ Charmani, EMBA Senior Manager, Accenture

“This program is the jewel in the crown of any program in Dallas, and maybe the U.S.”

Charmani, a 2014 graduate of UTA’s EMBA program, is proud of his background and education. “I come from India,” he said, “with an engineering degree from one of the top universities.”

For this high-achieving professional, however, that wasn’t enough. He wanted to earn his MBA as well. He was convinced that, combined with his engineering degree, it would be the best of both worlds for his career. Charmani was interested in more than just boosting his salary; he wanted the gratification of being able to work more effectively.

As a senior manager at Accenture in Dallas/Fort Worth, Charmani also wanted an Executive MBA program that was the best of both worlds: one that was convenient in terms of both location and format. He also wanted an EMBA program that would adequately cover three areas essential to his job responsibilities:

  • understanding the global environment
  • building high-performance teams
  • making sense of financial data

“I couldn’t find a better program than the UTA EMBA,” Charmani said. The 15-month program, one of the shortest in the country, was perfect for him. “In my industry, everything is changing every six months. We are living in exponential times.”

The UTA EMBA’s cohort structure, a team-based environment, appealed to him as well. “I really wanted a cohort-based program so I could work with other seasoned professionals in industry.” Charmani said his cohort was definitely diverse, with students from Texas, Latin America, the Middle East, South America and all across the U.S.

Charmani said he needed an EMBA program that covered all aspects of finance for managers. He wanted a curriculum with more than “just one-off courses,” but that included activities, too. And he wanted to become more than just a good manager; he wanted a program that groomed leaders.

The UTA EMBA had it all — and then some.

That “some” is the UTA EMBA China immersion program. “This program is the jewel in the crown of any program in Dallas, and maybe the U.S.,” Charmani said. “I think it’s the most underestimated aspect of the program.” It not only gave him a global perspective, it was a life-changing experience.

And the one-on-one career coaching was icing on the cake for Charmani.

Charmani quickly began implementing the knowledge he gained from his UTA EMBA on the job. In his role as client engagement lead at Accenture, Charmani sells solutions to build next-generation platforms for sales and marketing organizations. It’s his job to bring in a team to implement the solution. “I must bring together people from all different walks of life on each project,” he said. “We need to hit the ground running. This was especially challenging for me. How do I get the team to work on one goal, one vision?” That’s when he drew on the course material on building high-performance teams.

The financial knowledge he gained was also extremely beneficial, for both internal and external projects. “I never looked into the financial reports of my own company as I did in the UTA EMBA,” Charmani said. He added that his financial acumen is valuable in terms of working with clients too. It gives him a new approach and insight, starting with examining the client’s financial data. “This was tremendously helpful. I used to walk through a client’s door, knowing just their names and type of business, asking ‘How can I help you?’”

For professionals considering the UTA EMBA, Charmani recommends attending a class preview where they can meet alumni and staff. In fact, UTA’s faculty is another reason he chose its EMBA program. The instructors are not all academicians; many are people with vast experience in the business world.

So what advice would Charmani give to these prospective students? ““Look no further. The UTA EMBA is a program that will definitely get you to the next level in your career,” he said. “It happened to me.”

Based on his own experience, in a LinkedIn article Charmani makes a case for the EMBA. He uses the term “intrapreneur” and explains this mindset, which is reinforced in the UTA EMBA curriculum: “At the end of the day, managers are running businesses. They don’t all look at it that way. They need to think like an entrepreneur within their own organization.”

“Once you complete the program,” he added, “that’s actually the beginning of the journey, not the end of the journey. Learning is lifelong.”

 

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