Name: Kudzai Mtemeri
Last job title: Accountant, Allan Gray
Previous degree: BSc Accounting and Finance, University of Birmingham
1. Why did you choose RSM for your MBA?
“I was looking for a one-year programme in Europe. I did lots of research and noticed that many MBAs focus on one area, such as banking. At RSM, you can tailor your own MBA and be open-minded.”
2. What has been the most challenging activity?
“The Living Management Project was really challenging. You work on a real case, not just theoretical stuff, with other people and a lot of pressure in a short space of time. You keep asking yourself if you can do this, as it’s what companies expect after the MBA. But you grow as a person during this time. If it was earlier in the programme it would have been a nightmare, so the timing was perfect.”
3. How has the Personal Leadership Development Programme affected you?
“You face reality with things you don’t want to deal with, like areas you want to grow in. For example, I was scared of public speaking. But I was forced to face things that are out of my comfort zone. I’m not perfect at it, but it’s getting better.”
4. Do you notice different cultural approaches to working within global teams?
“Definitely. Initially, we just wanted to be nice to each other. Some cultures are more direct, but some are more respectful and don't want to speak up to negatively affect dynamics. People are now more likely to speak up. We’ve adjusted to each other well.”
5. Can you define the 'RSM MBA experience'?
“It’s like a family. It’s very personal. The small class size means we get to know each other, and it’s genuine. We win spirit awards at external events for a reason. I’m glad I came to RSM.”
6. What transformation in your professional life are you hoping to achieve with the full-time MBA?
“It’s about seeing the bigger picture. I was focused on accounting and finance. But I see things from operations perspectives and other angles now. I’m learning to be a leader, and can now see myself leading a team and dealing with things I’ve not done before. It’s really good practice.”
7. What advice would you give to others to make the most of their MBA experience?
“You have to be really open-minded. It’s an international class and you can learn so much from everyone else. It’s amazing what I’ve learned. And, for example, if I ever go to Japan I have two classmates from there who have taught me a lot.”
8. How do you feel about living in the Netherlands?
“On the first day it was raining snow, and I wanted to turn back! After Birmingham, I didn’t want to do this again. Then spring rolled in and it was beautiful. I enjoy living in Rotterdam. I felt at home straight away. The Netherlands is seen as a liberal country. You can be yourself here, people mind their own business. It’s very diverse.”
9. After the full-time MBA, what does the future hold?
“I would love to stay in the Netherlands and work in impact investing. It’s not about just get a profit. It’s about people, planet and profit, so investing in things that benefit our world. After a few years, I’m thinking of moving to South Africa and put to practice what I’ve learned here.”