Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Pre-MBA Learning

I have been thinking of the academic skills that I need to sharpen in the coming months before I join the MBA course at the University of South Australia in Adelaide.

I consulted with a couple of friends who have passed out of the Indian School of Business. This is what they suggested.

Study Accounting, Business Statistics including probability and some calculus. Since I am interested in Strategy I decided to study some Strategy too.

I have decided to take the following courses. I will be studying on my own with possible inputs from my friends and definitely use the Internet as much as possible.

1. An Introduction to Financial Accounting
2. Business Mathematics
3. Management Information
4. Strategy
5. Corporate Finance
6. Case studies

Readings and Source Material

I am using a basic accounting text for financial accounting. I have learnt accounting in my bachelors and hence do not need to worry much.

Business Math is a fascinating subject. How do we use the vast power of math in business. My friend who graduated from the Indian School of Business (ISB) provided me the textbooks and material used at his school. The business math casebook was prepared by profs at Wharton. It is an amazing book. Easy to understand and geared towards learning the ability to use statistics and probability to take business decisions rather than learn formuales.

Some years back I found a book written in the 1970s in the United Kingdom on Management Information. This book is aimed at understanding the various ways maths can be used in business to solve problems and present information in a easier to understand format. This is one of the easiest books I have seen which teaches the application of mathematics in business. This is on a priority list for me.

Strategy is my favourite subject. The ISB has a wonderful book on Startegy with case studies, relevant articles and chapters from different books. It is a wonderful compilation and a good introduction to Srategy. I just about finished reading a article by Porter on What is Strategy? published in the Harvard Business Review in 1996. (will post about it later)

I have also added Kenichi Ohmaes' The Mind of a Strategist as part of the reading list. This will provide the right mental paradigms. If time permits, I will add Sun Tzu's Art of War and A Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi.

Corporate Finance will be dealt with if I can get through with the others. I am not sure I have the time for that.

Other Sources
This is the plan for the next couple of months and hopefully this will get be ready for the course in April, 2005.

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