I came into the IBEAR MBA knowing that we had a formidable course load ahead of us. Unlike most students, I came in having already taken the course outside of the program I wondered, what if anything I would learn above what I had already taken.
I was pleasantly surprised by what I ultimately learned in class.
Our managerial statistics course started predictably with a discussion of measures of center and measures of variability. What I found the most gratifying was that the class discussion and lecture went beyond the simple statistical definitions but touched on the specific business applications of these concepts. The professor made a real effort to tie the theoretical material to its applications in business.
For example, we talked about the modes of a distribution. While the literal definition of a mode is the point(s) that has the greatest concentration of data, from a business perspective we learned that a distribution of data may have many modes and that there is something significantly interesting going at the modes of the distribution. From a commercial perspective, we should dig deeper into what factors are causing a concentration of the data.
We went on to apply this principle to a distribution of the age of customers in an industry. As we discussed looked at this distribution we were given the average age of users in the distribution and asked to come up with a strategy that best targets are demographic.
Previously, I would have taken the simple average of the distribution and decided to focus on that age point and I think many of my colleagues at my previous position would have done the same thing. However, we learned that averages are susceptible to outliers that may through off the final number. Taking the various modes from the distribution would be a more effective way of targeting a meaningful concentration of users.
I left class that day with a distinct sense of accomplishment as I realized that knowledge can come in many forms and today I was able able to deepen my understanding of a topic I had already known and learn how to apply it in business.