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How it started/How it’s going – Simran Chattha, MEMBA ‘23


Quick Info

  • Name: Simran Chattha
  • Graduate Year: 2023
  • Morning or Evening MBA: Evening MBA
  • Current position and employer: Editor, Water Canada
  • Previous position and employer: Associate Editor, Water Canada

The initial steps

It was the desire to move to a more senior role that inspired Simran Chattha, MBA ’23, to enter the Morning/Evening MBA program at the Rotman School.

An Associate Editor at Water Canada, a publication dedicated to promoting better water management and stewardship in Canada, she felt she could make a larger contribution. In December 2020, she spoke with senior management and indicated her interest in taking on more senior responsibilities within the organization.

Although Simran had most of the fundamentals needed for the role, there were also opportunities for improvement. Learning this kickstarted her journey to advance.

For Simran, pursuing a Rotman MBA was an easy choice. The reputation of the School and the courses offered in the MBA program had strong appeal. Most importantly, the Morning/Evening program would allow her to continue working while pursuing the degree, and to take learning from the classroom directly into her role.

In addition to the above, Rotman’s recognized expertise in leadership development is a fundamental component of the Morning/Evening MBA program. Students integrate learning from a leadership course with their professional experience, 360 assessments, a leadership retreat, immersive simulations, group work, and personal coaching to build a skill set for their own desired leadership outcomes. Rotman’s Self-Development Lab offers transformative programs of personal discovery and leadership development to hone resilience and self-awareness. Students also have many opportunities to further their leadership skills through extra-curricular involvement and case competitions.

Getting ready to move up

In her first few months at Rotman, Simran could see that she was leveraging new skills and gaining the knowledge she would need in order to to achieve her career aspirations.

Time management was a significant ability that she learned to excel in. Another skill crucial to Simran’s transition was the ability to prioritize tasks and projects. Early on in her studies, she recognized that all these would be important if she was going to succeed in the program, due to her commitments at school and at work.

Making the transition

Over the course of three to four months, senior management observed Simran’s work, was impressed by her dedication and her improvement and recognized her potential as a leader. After that period, she was offered a promotion to the role of Editor at Water Canada. Simran now leads the development of all editorial content for Water Canada across digital and print platforms. She also identifies opportunities and drives new initiatives for reaching audiences, both online and in print, to advance Water Canada's brand.

"Although this transition might have been possible without the MBA, I think it set me apart from other candidates that might have been considered for the role…I can…move higher than anticipated because of Rotman's MBA program."

The time management and prioritization skills Simran learned at Rotman have helped her in the new role because she now has more responsibilities to juggle in the same amount of time day-to-day. Although there are days when she wishes she could do everything, she now knows that might not feasible. Using tools that help her prioritize tasks better, she has learned to be reasonable about what she can accomplish in a specific time period.

Advice for others considering an MBA with an eye to career transition

Simran attests to the strong foundation Rotman provides for individuals looking to move into a management role. Many of the core courses Rotman offers in the Morning/Evening MBA provide students with a large amount of knowledge in a short period of time, as well as broadening their perspective to include topics they may have not come across in the past.

“One of the reasons why I chose to pursue a Rotman MBA is because of the courses that are offered. Although there was a big learning curve for me, especially at the beginning of the program, I was able to get through it because of the resources offered (i.e., pre-courses, Scholar Sessions, etc.). I would recommend the program to others.”

“The Rotman MBA is great for people that are looking to venture outside of their comfort zone and learn more.”

To learn more about the Morning & Evening MBA and to ask questions, contact us and send us your resume for pre-assessment. 

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