Lessons in leadership

Ms Kathleen Martinez hopes that her MBA will allow her to develop her managerial skills and make better business decisions.
Ms Kathleen Martinez hopes that her MBA will allow her to develop her managerial skills and make better business decisions. PHOTO: PSB ACADEMY

Entrepreneur Kathleen Martinez hopes her MBA at PSB Academy will help her become a better manager

For entrepreneur Kathleen Martinez, 34, pursuing a Master of Business Administration (MBA) at PSB Academy is but one part of her busy schedule.

The founder of cosmetics company K. Godfroy Cosmetics has been designing and creating make-up since 2016 in partnership with co-founder Mr Josh Ching.

It has nine full-time employees (including Ms Martinez) and a presence in Singapore and the Philippines.

Ms Martinez decided to pursue an MBA to develop her managerial skills and have a better understanding of how to make strategic decisions in business. She is also passionate about academics — her father is a university professor — and has a desire to network with like-minded people.

She says: “An MBA is more than a title. It’s preparation for a senior management role in business.

“You’ll be exposed to successful leaders and increase your chances at getting investments from venture capitalists.”

A top-notch education

Pursuing her MBA overseas was an option that Ms Martinez considered, but she eventually decided to stay in Singapore.

In September last year, she enrolled in PSB Academy’s MBA programme offered by the University of Wollongong (UOW), which is ranked among the top 40 universities in Asia-Pacific by Times Higher Education in 2016-17.

She was drawn to PSB Academy because of the flexible structure of its programme, attractive payment options and central location of its City Campus — perfect for a busy entrepreneur like her.

The UOW MBA is a 24-month part-time course comprising 12 modules. It includes real-world case studies, experiential learning that includes planning and executing an integrated business project, and an emphasis on peer learning.

Says Dr Sam Choon-Yin, dean of PSB Academy: “The UOW MBA programme is focused on creating a sustainable model of teaching that incorporates work-integrated learning for students, with the help of our industry partners.

“Our students, like Kathleen, are the best evidence of our commitment to developing leaders who are recognised for their capability, quality and success in the global workplace.”

Managing a busy routine

Ms Martinez’s day usually begins at 6am, when she has breakfast with her son. She then spends most of her day managing the K. Godfroy Cosmetics store at Tangs, VivoCity.

Her lunch and tea breaks are spent catching up on work or assignments. After a quick gym session, she heads home at 5pm, with the occasional grocery shopping trip along the way.

If she has a lecture, she will then head to PSB. Her lectures are held from 7pm to 10pm, up to three times a week.

Ms Martinez spends free evenings with her son and only continues with her studies or work after his bedtime.

“Having a positive mindset helps me manage my day so that it is not just a mundane routine. I have also learnt to multi-task and balance my time between personal needs and responsibilities,” she says.