Sunday, November 01, 2009

From Engineering to Economics

Stack means LIFO and Queue means FIFO. The most basic data structures in computer science.
Well, apparently, they are also inventory costing methods used in Financial Accounting.

So what's the best thing about coming to a B-School from an engineering background?
Quant skills? Structured thinking? A sense of confidence that you would be able to survive it? Knowing the equation of a normal distribution and being able to handle probability?
No. If you ask me that is.

The best thing is that none of the courses are a repeat of what you did in undergrad. Which means that the balance sheets and the bond pricing and the supply, demand, interest rate graphs are all new for me. Yes, for some of the things, (and this is mostly in economics) Wikipedia had already given me a foundation to build on, but learning about how the Fed might lower interest rates to bolster investment in a formal setting is certainly helping me get a stronger grasp on it. Suddenly the articles in the WSJ have started to make sense. Like when they talked about Amazon, Wal-Mart and Target not being able to discount price books in Europe or when they analyzed various industries on the basis of cash as percentage of assets.

It's tiring and frustrating at times. Being asked to do so much in so little time. But at least so far, it takes just a moment to sit down, take a few steps and realize the tremendous potential these two years have. And I'm not talking about getting a great job and walking out with a fat paycheck. I'm simply talking about the perspective a B-School can (and already is) give to someone who hasn't studied about business before.


Lost Soul ( Nitin Pande ) said...

yep .. its always fun to expand the horizons of your thought .. firstly coming out of the engineers only friend circle and then studying things that are so new ... way to go .. lage raho :)

Oded said...

Hi Atish!

It is very interesting to read about your thoughts regarding b-school as someone that also come from engineering background. I am studying all sort of things about economics at the moment and feel the same way as you do many times. I look forward to start studying in Darden and share this experience with you.

I will use this opportunity to thank you for showing me around on my visit. It was really nice of you and I enjoyed my visit very much.

Good luck at school and take care,
Oded Onn (Israel)

Balaji Pasupathy said...

The economics is backbone of every business .. Being a engineering undergrad and taking a techie job seldom exposes you to the essence of an industry .... Its only when you get to manage it comes the true challenge .... finding resources and tying them up ... taking decisions fast and owing them become the part of learning curve .... But the most difficult part is the fact that as an MBA you deal with human beings and they don't quite work like machines that we are used to as techies ....

marry said...

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