My EMBA journey has helped me step into my Managing Director role at AME Group

Richard Proctor, Executive MBA Student
Richard Proctor
MD AME Group
Executive MBA
Richard shares how his Executive MBA helped him accelerate his career and develop new insights into business practices.

The EMBA helped me get to where I wanted to be in my career 

I started out professionally working in magnetics engineering and worked my way up gradually from a student intern to leading the department; delivering new products with a small team of engineers and with shop floor staff working with me. I began my EMBA whilst leading this team and have since moved to AME Group  prior to completing the EMBA.

I wanted to progress in my career, get experience and an understanding of areas of the business world that I would not get from behind an engineering computer. The EMBA at the University of Sheffield seemed a good way to start that journey. The Management School, or SUMS as we call it, has a great reputation. The syllabus looked compelling and the opportunity to be part of a dynamic cohort was a benefit too. 

Growing as a leader

Apart from the EMBA course, which has been an enjoyable challenge so far, I am the sort of person that goes looking for challenges and complications to try and solve them and make improvements. My biggest challenges have been personal ones, learning to reflect on who I am, what I am doing and how that plays out and affects others. 

The EMBA has taught me that desiring to solve problems is great but that I don’t have the monopoly on good ideas. Learning to let go of that enables others to try out their own ideas and bring the company on in ways I would never have thought of. The main learning outcome was that the team is way cleverer than I am and I can shine a light on their excellent work.

Working while studying is all about balance

Studying the EMBA has been both stretching and rewarding. The quality of delivery has been excellent and has dovetailed neatly into work situations. I was nervous about achieving at masters level at the beginning but have been pleased with the support that I have received. I have taken the challenge in my stride so far. 

However, working and studying, especially during the pandemic, has been challenging at times. I have found that a little bit of planning upfront has gone a long way. 

It has been a lot of work to get through but the alignment with my day-to-day responsibilities has enabled me to complete my assignments without compromising my work duty. Taking on a new role with AME Group has really cemented the study because I am now responsible for driving the business under the mentorship of the board. The breadth of study has made this transition easier. 

Reflecting on my practice has helped me to build confidence

The programme helped me to reflect on my own practice and this has helped me to be confident in many situations. I also have no fear about needing to learn a lot about a subject in a short space of time. These two things are beneficial for me on a regular basis. 

Securing my promotion

Recently, I have taken the MD position at AME Group, which is a great company and a real challenge for me. The board recognises the benefit of my study and they are involved in supporting me to complete it. My EMBA journey has given me credence with the board and a good grounding in the business ecosystem.  

I was told at the outset it would change your life. For me, it has but not without some hard work and dedication. For anyone thinking about the Executive MBA, I would recommend planning out your time to study, be aware of the requirements up front and use the support from the SUMS staff wherever possible – they are a reliable bunch. 

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