October 13, 2008

Bad Timing


"I read the news today, oh boy..." - John Lennon, A Day in the Life

I distinctly remember last year when were still taking Economics under Prof. Federico Macaranas, he said that our is graduating on a time that's very inopportune. He shared that by the time we graduate, the effects of the then simmering United States subprime mortgage crisis would be felt immensely. And, boy, is the world feeling it.

The financial crisis , now a global issue, is big news these days. A search for "financial crisis " in Google News  would yield over 400,000 news stories on the past month alone. Newspapers here have placed global financial crisis news in their respective front pages. News have covered a various range of issues: the subprime issue, crashing stock markets all over the glob, U.S. banks' bailout, the fall of investment banking, tons of money vanishing in a snap. But these news all have carried the same message: very bad financial times are imminent.

I can't help now but relate this situation to me, post-MBA studies. Given the external issues, how would this affect what I will do after graduation?

A good portion of our class came into business school with hopes of scoring a nice job upgrade. But will the opportunities be there? The writing was on the wall early this year when the some of the members of the MBA batch that preceded us lamented that the jobs in some sectors that used to be there weren't there. Does that mean we're all screwed?

If there's one nice thing studying in the Asian Institute of Management has taught me, it is that crisis means "danger" and "opportunity" in Chinese. Maybe there are some little pockets of opportunity that need to be discovered in this messy situation. Perhaps there are industries or sectors that are impervious to the financial crisis. Bottom-line: my own plans need to change, in light of the current situation.

Expectations also need to be adjusted. If you're unrealistic at this point in time, that is bad timing.

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