Alight senior manager Bola Mustapha has a key to improve your business network

Bola Mustapha says getting an MBA is a personal choice

Bola Mustapha is a senior manager for the AI personalization engine at Alight Solutions, a leading cloud-based human capital technology and services provider that powers health, wealth, and well-being for millions of people and dependents.

Mustapha was present at the National Black MBA Association conference and spoke with rolling out about Alight Solutions, the importance of an MBA, and how they can help your career goals.

What is your role at Alight Solutions?

I’m the program manager for our AI personalization engine. My role has a lot of different aspects. One is [an] admin list of administrative functions that I perform, and the other portion involves evangelizing our product to other work streams. Another part of my role involves identifying KPIs — key performance indicators — that we need to reach to make sure that our product is doing what we’re supposed to be doing along the way.

Why was it important for you to get an MBA?

Getting an MBA is a personal decision for each individual. Whichever entity you choose, you can get the return on investment that you need to set out on. Some folks are doing it because they want to increase their business acumen, and some people want to increase their network. Some folks want to make a pivot in their career, [as] they’re currently doing one role and they want a different type of role. An MBA helps to strengthen areas where [you] might be weak or need improvement. It’s also great because it widens the scope, or [deepens] the depth of the knowledge in certain areas, [in] which probably you weren’t as strong.

As far as getting an MBA, each individual has their own reason as to why they might want to pursue one. Personally, I used to be in a different industry and I was looking to make a shift to [another] industry. So the MBA helped with my career pivot, and it’s been a great experience so far.

How can an MBA help your career goals?

I think you’d have more opportunities that are presented to you, either organically or inorganically. Organically, if you have an MBA, you have a larger network, and a lot of times that network, they might have an opportunity for you, [at] my firm, or a friend of theirs may have an opportunity that aligns with your goals and career aspirations. Inorganically, if you have an MBA, it helps you stand out from other folks who might not have an MBA.

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