Alina Kovalevich, Russia
Alina Kovalevich, Class of 2012
“I learned how to listen to ideas which at first might look quite crazy, how to see a rational amidst the noise, how to do everything fast and focused, and how to prioritize since you are always in rush. I learned to not let “the perfect be the enemy of the good.”
Current place of residence: Tel Aviv
Current job title and place of work: Co-Founder, Ever.Travel
Why did you decide to pursue an MBA?
An international MBA was always part of my plan. So the first thing I did when I moved to Israel was check all the MBA program options this country offered. I knew that timing wise my move offered me a prime opportunity to take the time to change my career path, upgrade my business skills and, very importantly, grow my network.
What aspects of your IMBA experience, looking back now, do you really value?
I always knew I want to be an entrepreneur. The most value I took out of the program was to be fully immersed in an entrepreneurial environment. I learned how to listen to ideas which at first might look quite crazy, how to see a rational amidst the noise, how to do everything fast and focused, and how to prioritize since you are always in rush. I learned to not let “the perfect be the enemy of the good.
How did the program help you position yourself for your current professional role?
The IMBA enabled me to see the big picture. I cannot say the first time I felt it. I just realized that after a while I was able to see the big picture. I know where I need to put pressure and how I need to get where we need to go. I’m confident. It’s not something I can measure or point to in a book – it’s more of a result of the overall experiences I had, the accumulation of the cases we studied, and the influence of the people I met. I now have another way you see the world.
Did you change through the course of the program? If so, in what way?
I always felt myself to be out of “the box” and because of that I learned a lot, since you can learn something new only if you are out of your comfort zone. For example, I learned how to work fast in unpredictable, unknown, stressful, fascinating and challenging environments. I learned how to give up an idea if I saw that it wasn’t working anymore. I learned how to cope but not avoid a situation I didn’t feel comfortable in.
How did studying in Tel Aviv and/or Israel impact your studies?
Since I have studied in Moscow, Shanghai, Tel-Aviv and Hyderabad universities I definitely can say that Tel Aviv IMBA program has its unique entrepreneurial environment. I believe that this is a result of the city’s people, history, and culture and business attitudes. Israel is as “start up nation” and if you want to start your business you’d better study where people have entrepreneurship in their DNA.
How did studying with students from all over the world influence your studies?
I learned a lot from my peers. I made friends and I really appreciate the IMBA for that. Studying together, we always saw the same subject from different angles. I really learned a lot from my classmates.
Anything to add?
I wish I could do it one more time! If I were to do it again, I would push myself to spend more time out there meeting people at conferences and events.
To date, the Sofaer IMBA has an alumni community of more than 250 located all over the world engaged in a diverse range of professional pursuits, including entreprenurship. We’re proud to introduce you to a few of them through our Alumni Spotlight series. To learn more about the careers of our alumni post-program, we invite you to reference our IMBA Career Statistics.