Here is an introduction to Meredith Caldwell who will be joining the MBA programme in September 2017. Meredith will be a regular blogger on this site, sharing her Oxford experience over the next 12 months.
Q1. In one word, how would your best friend describe you, and how would you manager describe you?
Best friend: Loyal
Q2. Tell us about where you have come from and what has led you to Oxford.
I am from Australia, where I have been working as a Management Consultant to help people deal with change. Most recently, I have been researching the skills needed, especially for vulnerable populations, to prepare for digital disruption.
My drive to make positive change was embedded from my work at the World Economic Forum, Switzerland, where I worked with global leaders on the importance of water scarcity. I believe sectors will need to work together to tackle wicked problems, so it was a natural decision to choose Oxford to learn more, meet people from across a wide range of departments and develop a systems-thinking framework.
Q3. What have you done to prepare yourself for the MBA?
I would like to attend lectures from guest speakers from across departments. As such, I have been familiarising myself with the various departments and centres across Oxford. Additionally, I have been meeting my classmates and buying a bike!
Q4. What do you hope to gain from completing your MBA?
I hope to gain an international network of friends and colleagues and to maintain relationships with lecturers and other leading innovators.
Q5. What is the best advice you received before commencing your MBA?
Don’t worry too much about rankings, but pick the course that is right for you. Ask yourself what you want out of an MBA and then find the best school or university that gives you that.
Q6. What excites you about your new journey at Oxford?
I am excited about being challenged, being out of my comfort zone and learning things I have not yet even considered.
Q7. What do you think will be the most challenging part of the programme?
Knowing when to say ‘no’. Oxford has so many amazing opportunities that one person cannot do them all. Targeting what I will get the most out of, as well as identifying the new things I want to try will be a challenge but also the best thing about the programme.
Q8. How do you plan to take the learnings from the MBA to influence positive change?
There has never been a more critical time for populations to be equipped with resilience. Following my MBA, I wish to apply innovations to workforce development to better prepare people for the next industrial revolution.
Q9. Lastly, what’s your favourite hashtag?
I currently have two favourite hashtags:
#futureskills keeps me up-to-date with what research and companies identify as important for the future
#liptember is a fresh new campaign for mental health; I’m watching keenly what impact it can have.