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Statement of Purpose

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Statement of Purpose
Master’s Applicant, Fall 2010

Efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things.”

- Peter Drucker

I wish to pursue a Masters in Finance with modules related to financial modelling, and managing investment portfolios. My curiosity to understand the world of business led me to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Management Studies. During this three-year program, I had the opportunity to understand several facets of a business and the various drivers, enablers and levers that can sustain or derail a business. I was most fascinated by the financial management aspects of a business and therefore have keen interest in specialising in this field. The current economic climate has demonstrated that theoretical knowledge of financial instruments and tools is clearly not enough. This has to be supplemented by robust policies and a deep ethical conscience that drives policy making and practice. I aspire to deepen my understanding of applied finance at such a holistic level and learn from the experts in the field.

Since my school days I have been a bright student. I was passionate about mathematics, chemistry and physics and thus pursued science for two years of my undergraduate studies. During this time, I studied Derivatives, Correlation and Regression, Linear Programming Problems, Integration, Matrices and Basic Statistics. I thoroughly enjoyed using my analytical skills and my inclination towards mathematics grew stronger. I became more aware of my strengths and that I enjoyed problem solving. Throughout the course Quantitative Methods of Business, Management and Cost accounting, Managerial Economics, Financial Management and Financial Accounting fascinated me. This fascination triggered my aspiration to gain more knowledge in these subjects.

My decision to pursue a career in applied finances was further strengthened by my internship experience. While working with Pepe Jeans (PJL CLOTHING INDIA LIMITED) as a part of their reputed marketing team during my first year summer break, I learned that marketing can drive business sales but robust financial planning drives profitability. It’s a seemingly obvious theoretical concept but that was when the penny dropped for me. And I can remember that distinctly because that experience made it quite clear to me that I wanted to study finance.

As an apprentice with the firm, I took keen interest in developing plans, generating ideas and formulating strategies along with the team that would enable maximization of revenues and minimization of costs. During this time I got practical exposure to negotiations with sponsors and partners and budget allocation for promotional campaigns. One of the greatest lessons I have learnt is that plans are much more than a document. Execution is all about making each word in a plan a reality. It’s important to list and consider all the internal and external factors that can affect a plan. If one can sense that things were going slow or not working out, we should stop to think about what needs to be changed and how, in order to make the vision a reality. This is also when I developed a better understanding of risk management.

It is good to borrow. It is better to repay. But that is passé. Today we can rephrase that adage as ‘It’s best not to repay. Everyone around seems to be working very hard at persuading lenders that it is divine to forgive the obligation to repay. If loans are forgiven the economy will boost and grow. The US, the land of free markets and capitalism, started the process with a few trillion dollars of forgiveness. Thus, in my final year, I prepared a literature review titled the ‘The Domino Effect on World Economy’. This research project gave me the opportunity to explore and understand the world of financial markets in a global context. The impact of the U.S sub-prime crisis on global economies formed the core of the review. Although this seemed like a daunting topic to set myself up for, I was eager to take on the challenge to increase my understanding of the phenomenon. I received positive and encouraging feedback from my supervisor, and the knowledge I gained during this project has only fueled my aspiration to study finance.

Globalisation has brought economies closer and created a wider web of interdependence. I am keen to study in a more global environment and UK provides an excellent multi-cultural base to learn about global economics, investment analysis, financial planning, strategic finance, international finance and global financial markets. I enjoy a good debate and am motivated by intellectual banter. Moreover, exchanging views with peers from different cultures and business contexts would supplement my academic learning. My ability to manage my time and balance study with extracurricular activities will assist me in making this a memorable learning experience.

With the dramatic meltdown of 2008 that the world almost succumbed to I realised the significance of financial planning and management. With stock markets collapsing and frozen credit markets, only those with well crafted knowledge in investments, financial instruments and financial management were able to tread along a progressive path while the others suffered sweeping losses that accumulated to billions and trillions of dollars. These losses were fatal not only for organizations but also for economies.

Thus, for me the magnitude of possessing such understanding continued to amplify. I chose to study Econometrics in my last semester so that when I am appropriately qualified I will be able to contribute my best efforts for the betterment of an organization not only in a period of recession but also act for extended periods of prosperity and escalation in profits for the organization and the economy in turn.

I have strived for and demonstrated excellence in all the opportunities I had. In these three years, I have seen and witnessed growth in two dimensions—personal and academic. Being a part of a 120-member student organization has taught me the true meaning of integrity and commitment and how that impacts leadership and culture. Personally, I have developed a greater understanding of myself as a leader and a team player. The feedback from my peers and professors has encouraged me to aim higher and follow my dreams of becoming an entrepreneur.

After a masters program in finance, I would like to gain experience working in the banking, investments or financial planning sector. I see myself working with a reputed company where I am a part of the finance division and contribute towards making the right financial decisions along with the team in order to enable them to multiply their sales, generate profits, ensure high returns, make unblemished investments and in a manner that supports economic stability. In the long-term, I would like to establish my own business in the innovative and dynamic field of real estate management. It is a sector that can make or break an economy especially as witnessed during the recent global recession.

I believe that masters in finance would be the first step toward fulfilling my career aspirations and goals. And having made the decision to excel and do nothing short of it, I’ve embarked on this challenging journey and have firm belief that my determination and hard work will take me places.

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