Being Uncomfortable at HBS

Minh_Chau_Pic (3)Strategy consultant. HuffPost blogger. Passionate foodie. Avid trekker. Tech enthusiast. I was a whole host of things prior to Harvard Business School – and I still am. Although part of me likes having a routine to maintain a healthy dose of sanity, another part is always on the lookout for novelty. If curiosity killed the cat. Then, lucky I am not a cat. Therefore, it isn’t a surprise that I enjoyed my time as a consultant, because it enabled me to jump from helping to develop a strategy for a large health system to supporting the merger of two large payors to designing a pro bono marketing plan for a NYC restaurant.

However, I am starting to feel the itch to dive into uncharted waters once again – and I can’t think of a better place to do it than here.

I came to HBS to be uncomfortable. I don’t mean the “awkward silence” type of uncomfortable, but rather, the type of uncomfortable that challenges me to go beyond the limits I have set for myself – stretching my imagination, questioning the status quo, learning through failure, defending my assertions, and confronting my own fears.  While I don’t know with certainty which direction the wind will blow (startup? social enterprise? back to consulting?), I know for sure how I want to spend the next two years. As I recently wrote in my reflection as part of the RC course, FIELD, I’ve set forth the following promise to myself:

I commit to challenge myself – to take risks – to see past obstacles – to be uninhibited – to be afraid, but courageous – to be embarrassed – to be humble – to be honest, but thoughtful – to be grateful – to be deliberate. I will break out of my comfort zone and let my passions and interests, rather than social expectations, guide me. I will develop relationships that cut below the surface, knowing that I will reveal my vulnerabilities, but recognizing that the sincerity and honesty of the relationships will be worth the risk. This is how I will use the next two years at HBS.

– Minh Chau, MBA 2015


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