Saji Khullar joined McKinsey & Company’s Helsinki office as an Associate in November 2021, towards the end of her studies in the Aalto MBA program.
Khullar explains that her entire career has been steered by one goal: continuous learning.
“I started off as a software engineer and I am working as a management consultant today – this journey is driven by the curiosity to know what’s on the other side,” she says.
“Prior to starting the Aalto MBA program, I worked in various consulting and corporate leadership roles in different industries for 22 years. A few years ago, I noticed that my learning curve flattened even after changing roles. I wanted a spark: a radical, exciting, and challenging change,” she reminisces.
Khullar decided to join the Aalto MBA program after completing two modules as a visitor.
“Participating in two modules before formally starting my Aalto MBA studies was a great decision for me. It proved that I could indeed balance work, family life and studies – and convinced me that the Aalto MBA was exactly the kind of spark I was looking for,” she emphasizes.
“All in all, the Aalto MBA was a miraculous experience. It enabled me to connect all the dots from everything I had learned in the past and it elevated my thought process.”
Amazing people, prestige, and a great program structure
Khullar explains that three contributing factors made her Aalto MBA experience rewarding: people, prestige, and program structure.
All in all, the Aalto MBA was a miraculous experience."
“The program attracts ambitious and self-driven candidates from very different fields. This made every interaction intellectually stimulating. When you participate in an outstanding program, you also get to share the experience with outstanding people,” she points out.
“Prestige is also an inherent part of the study experience. I am proud to say that I obtained my MBA from Aalto EE. The program’s triple accreditation, the impeccable level of service, the architecture of the Aalto EE building and the art surrounding you – everything is first-class,” she continues.
“Finally, there is the program structure. It strikes a great balance between highly relevant traditional modules – such as corporate strategy and finance – and a specialization layer of modules focusing on future skills, which you can cherry pick from to gain new tools and insights to boost your own professional growth.”
The Aalto MBA transforms how you see the world
Khullar underlines that the Aalto MBA had a significant impact on her career.
“I wanted a job where I could not only apply all the tools and skills I acquired from the Aalto MBA in different contexts, but also continue to learn. McKinsey was indeed the right place for me,” Khullar says.
“We are a global management consulting firm committed to helping organizations accelerate sustainable and inclusive growth. I work with clients across the private, public, and social sectors to solve complex problems, combining bold strategies and transformative technologies to create long-lasting impact,” she describes.
“For me, this is a dream job. I work with the industry’s best talents, and I have continued on an incredible learning curve.”
Aalto MBA is an exceptional program for people who are hungry to grow and who have the conviction to transform their careers."
Khullar affirms that she warmly recommends the Aalto MBA, but notes that the program is not for everybody.
“The Aalto MBA transforms how you see the world and broadens your outlook. It is an exceptional program for people who are hungry to grow and who have the conviction to transform their careers,” she says.
“It gave me confidence, empowerment, and an overall sense of achievement emerging from my improved skillset. I also gained a great professional network from my MBA cohort, professors, and guest speakers – and wonderful new friendships.”
Support from your family is vitally important
Although the MBA takes time and effort, Khullar confirms that the task is not unsurmountable.
“Many people have asked me how I managed my time. I always give them the same answer. Just jump on the train and I am sure you will find your way. During the first few modules, everyone finds their own rhythm. And once you finish, you will find it was worth every effort,” she remarks.
“That said, I believe that support from your family is a prerequisite to successfully completing the program. My husband and our two teenage daughters provided amazing support throughout my studies, which made a world of a difference.”
Since this interview was conducted, Saji Khullar has moved to another organization.