It’s hard to believe that it’s been a full year since I donned a robe and cap to ceremonially celebrate my graduation from my MBA program at Cornell. It has been an amazing year since my graduation, even if the year passed quickly, as they always seem to.
The best news for me is that despite the quick passage of time, I don’t look back on it and see a blur. The year was filled with distinctive memories, each reinforcing that an MBA was the correct decision for me.
In the months after graduation, I was what many graduates deem “funemployed”. It’s the time during which you have a job lined up, but no income coming in. There’s a level of stress involved since the bills keep coming, but the goal is to enjoy that time. That was accomplished in a grand manor, with several weddings stretching from East to West. A marriage in the mountains. Nautical nuptials on boat. Two train trips from Wisconsin back to upstate NY. It was a little exhausting, but totally worth it.
While planning all the travels, I was also planning a move to a new city. There’s a whole blog post to be written on that subject alone, but suffice to say that many lessons were learned along the way. Short version: use caution when doing a cross-country move.
The next act was the start of work at Bain & Company in Chicago. After about 2 weeks of training it was off to my first project (or “case”, in Bain lingo). It was a project that had me traveling each week to help a retailer reevaluate their planning and forecasting process. Given my experience at Lands’ End, it was interesting to see similarities and differences between the two companies. That case took me through the holidays and into February 2015. After a few days on the beach (not staffed to a case), a little client development, and a week of additional training, I landed my next (and current) case for a large Industrial client. This case focuses on evaluating Sales & Marketing for both effectiveness (what can we do better / where can we invest) and efficiency (where can we save money).
Outside of work, life continues to look more like real adult stuff. My wife and I successfully completed Therapy Dog training for our goldendoodle Orzo. Student loan payments kicked in, draining a small fortune from each paycheck. My extended family has continued to evolve with new bundles of joy and celebrations of lives well lived. Friend and relative visits must be planned well in advance, but ties are kept strong with texts, Snapchats, email, and a variety of other communication platforms (since life wasn’t complicated enough).
As I said, it’s a lot to pack into a single year, but I’m happy to look back and say “that was awesome!”