Why a healthcare specific MBA?
MBA in International Healthcare Management / 21 March, 2019
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MBA IHM Class of 2020
Veronika is Marketing and Sales Director and Member of the Board of Olainfarm, the largest pharmaceutical company in the Baltic region.

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I began my career as a surgeon in Belarus. I practiced for four years then moved into the pharmaceutical industry, starting as a sales representative. I had good career progression with my company, and I was then invited to move to Latvia to assume my current role where I lead the marketing and sales team and also sit as a member of the Board of Olainfarm. I am responsible for both strategy and operational planning for the company.

Olainfarm has offices throughout the CIS and I make three to four trips per month in the region. Along with my family and children, my hobby is studying the accordion. I enjoy playing this fantastic instrument, and would like to achieve some level of accomplishment.

Why an MBA?

I wanted to do an MBA because I want to continue to progress with my career and in one moment I understood that I need more education to do this. I also have ideas about starting my own company one day, perhaps in a laboratory/diagnostics area, and this MBA will give me the skills to do that.

I learned about the International Healthcare Management MBA through an internet search, and I realised this program is exactly what I need for my skills development. Although I have good experience in marketing, I need to make decisions on financial KPIs and explain to our stakeholders why the company should invest in projects and what we should expect for a return on our investment. In addition to finance, I also want to learn more about managing people and leadership. I manage a team based in Latvia but also in different countries, and it is very important for me to learn to manage cross cultural teams well.

Why a healthcare MBA?

I chose a health specific MBA to learn with others from the same industry. Pharmaceutical companies try to offer healthcare professionals new solutions and cooperate with other industry players to improve health outcomes.

I have colleagues from every area of the healthcare sector in my MBA class. Our in-class assignments and discussions help me understand what is important to other healthcare professionals, allowing me to gain a better understanding of their different points of view. We constantly see new trends in healthcare systems and it is important for everyone in the industry needs to have a thorough understanding of these trends, especially from an international perspective.

The values of an IHM MBA

A healthcare specific MBA is a valuable learning experience for people who deal with health care delivery. Successfully implementing leadership, financial management and controlling to heathcare is a big issue and I like the specific focus that this MBA brings to these topics.

The Frankfurt School IHM MBA has more than fulfilled my expectations. It is international and gives me the opportunity to see different models of health care and their strengths and weaknesses. My class mates are such interesting people with huge expertise in different areas of healthcare. Being in a room with people from these diverse backgrounds helps me do my job better and understand different perspectives. I have completed three modules of the IHM MBA so far.  It was very interesting for me to see the German health care systems in Module 1 and 2, and to understand that all systems have strengths and weaknesses. The site visit to Merck was very important for me, I enjoyed seeing the amount of diversification they have achieved beyond just the pharma area.

Balancing study with a busy career

My advice would be to speak to your employer about the investment of your own time in your education. My family is very supportive as well.  The seven-day modules are a good way to concentrate learning and you can plan the time commitments for the whole program in advance. With planning and agreement from everyone, you can do it!