This year, Mike Fischer graduated cum laude on the International Action Learning MBA. On Business School Netherlands’ Graduation Day in the Kurhaus in Scheveningen (the Netherlands), we took the opportunity of asking him a few questions about his MBA journey, Action Learning experience and impressions of the Graduation so far.

BSN Alumnus Mike Fischer MBA and Juanita Bouwer MBA (Director: International, Business School Netherlands)Can you share with us what brought to this moment on Graduation Day?
This journey has been an unexpected pleasure. I met a professor on a flight from Nairobi to Johannesburg 10 years ago, and he made a point that I should consider doing this. I mulled over it for 5 years and eventually said ok, you either do it or you don’t do it, and I made that decision to do it. Once I started, I realised there was the possibility of doing this exceptionally well or just finishing the programme. I decided to do the latter and strove for a cum laude degree. It took an exceptional amount of work, and I’m thrilled that I managed to achieve that objective.

What has been your absolute highlight during the MBA?
Well, truth be told, I have managed to convince many colleagues in my work environment, who also endeavour to study and better themselves. I think they have taken great inspiration from the fact that I’ve tried this and finished it with honours and a cum laude degree in my latter years, and I think that has helped them grow as individuals. That, to me, has been a tremendous experience by creating a learning culture in our organisation and it has been very satisfying to me.

Does this learning culture include aspects of Action Learning as well?
Yes, it has specifically been that. As a human being, I’ve always had a view that the implementation of knowledge is the key to success. It’s not just about theory, and it has been tremendously gratifying to find a programme that has inculcated that as part of their philosophy, and it has been great to be able to develop a structure around which to share the knowledge.

What will you miss most about the MBA programme, since you have graduated now?
I will miss having something to do in the evenings. I work in Nairobi, and my family is in South Africa, and it has kept me sane in the years I’ve been working on my projects. I do business turnarounds, so I’m now striving to do something else in the academic field, but I’ll miss the pressure of having to deliver and complete the tasks on time. It has certainly given me a sense of purpose to figure out what are the next challenges.

Speaking of which: could our DBA be considered your next challenge?
Maybe, we’ll see!

For more information on our Action Learning MBA and Management Programmes, send an email to international@bsn.eu.

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