November 30, 2022

Business School

Business Opening

How I Sourced My Internship Exterior of the US: Abena Nyantekyi-Owusu – MBA

When Abena Nyantekyi-Owusu (MBA 2021) arrived to HBS soon after 7 many years at GE Health care in Ghana, she introduced with her the help of critical mentors, a solid fascination in engineering, and have faith in in her instinct. All three would play a portion in her job setting up and decision-generating method as she sought out an internship and afterwards a full-time job, even if they weren’t always in fantastic alignment.

An Possibility for Reflection

For Nyantekyi-Owusu, the selection to shell out two many years at HBS was driven by a motivation to pivot and a need to reflect. “The majority of my career had been in well being treatment and I was fascinated in exploring a transition within just infrastructure or thinking about a occupation in technological know-how offered my curiosity in the effects of tech on rising markets,” she spelled out. “I also desired to develop into a senior leader as my vocation progressed and this was an opportunity to be reflective about my subsequent actions and identify the sort of leader I preferred to be.”

The two-12 months program at HBS was especially pleasing to Nyantekyi-Owusu mainly because of the career pivot she hoped to make. “Originally I was taking into consideration universities in Europe, but then felt drawn to HBS and the two-calendar year plan simply because I required to consider chances and consider new matters as I refined my limited- and extended-expression targets,” she said. With that brain, Nyantekyi-Owusu established foot in Boston prepared to check out and choose gain of all HBS experienced to give.

Coaching, Finding out, and Instinct

As an RC, Nyantekyi-Owusu commenced utilizing occupation methods appropriate away. “In the initial few of months, there ended up plans with CPD job coaches to enable you think large-amount about what you wanted from your own and experienced career, and I attended pretty a number of of all those classes,” she shared.

By way of the assessments and packages, she consistently discovered herself drawn to small business advancement and tech and felt a potent feeling of direction. Talking with alumni in the discipline bolstered and validated her fascination, and sparked the concept of signing up for a startup for the summer offered her background was primarily in large corporations.

The up coming dilemma was around geography, and to make that decision she turned the imagined procedure inward. “Initially I considered that I would like to have knowledge doing work in the US about the summer season due to the fact in Africa owning US function expertise is celebrated and has a signaling influence that you have worked in extra created markets,“ claimed Nyantekyi-Owusu. “I listened to this recommendation from my personal mentors as well but spending the summer in the US didn’t set me on hearth. It did not give me that buzz. My intuition instructed me to glance for prospects with startups in Africa, and even although that felt like traveling in the opposite course of the suggestions I’d acquired and it gave me pause, I knew what I desired.”

Checking out the Startup Landscape in Africa

Nicely ahead of the COVID-19 pandemic located her finishing out the 2019-2020 college 12 months in Ghana with her loved ones, Nyantekyi-Owusu had begun discovering the startup landscape in Africa from afar. She was energetic in the Africa Business Club and spoke openly with her classmates about her ambitions.

“A classmate place me in contact with her sister who was doing the job at OPay (a fintech corporation in Lagos, Nigeria) who was incredibly generous connecting me with persons in her community,” Nyantekyi-Owusu mentioned. Nyantekyi-Owusu also labored closely with her career coach, Phillip Andrews, to develop a concentrate on list of 10 firms utilizing LinkedIn investigation and CB Insights. From there she identified contacts and launched herself.

Even though some of the discussions stalled at the starting of the pandemic, Nyantekyi-Owusu was capable to keep linked and in the long run was introduced with 4 opportunity opportunities in Africa. However, the conversation with OPay had caught in her thoughts and finally, she made a decision to pitch herself for a summer internship with the corporation.

“There ended up a whole lot of exciting items going on at OPay with a large wave of funding and I preferred to contribute,” Nyantekyi-Owusu reported. “They hardly ever experienced an intern before, but by applying the HBS methods on how to propose an internship I was able to place with each other a pitch.” OPay was energized to provide Nyantekyi-Owusu on board into a function on the product team, a situation exterior of her ease and comfort zone but one particular that permitted her immense option to find out.

Vital Learnings and Guidance

Nyantekyi-Owusu’s summer time knowledge furnished her with key learnings about what she preferred to do upcoming. Performing in Africa about the summer reinforced her interest in constructing her career on the continent in the shorter to extensive term and she also enjoyed the publicity to the tech marketplace. In addition, Nyantekyi-Owusu appreciated the option to be stretched in her position and be in constant understanding method.

For her upcoming phase, Nyantekyi-Owusu went back to her system of producing a focus on checklist and sought out a enterprise and a position that would enable her blend her interests and desires. This method led her to a rotational plan at American Tower where Nyantekyi-Owusu will be commencing with a Boston-dependent rotation soon after graduation. “I desired to merge my two passions of infrastructure (created by her job at GE Health care) and know-how and when I came throughout American Tower and figured out about their aim on rising markets it was fantastic,” she claimed.

Hunting forward to the foreseeable future, Nyantekyi-Owusu is fired up to rotate into different roles with American Tower around the following two a long time, with their Africa places of work large on her checklist.

For other learners searching for internships outside of the US, Nyantekyi-Owusu features the subsequent information: be proactive and be individual.

“Be definitely proactive, but also be ready to have discussions draw out about a small though,” she advised. “The recruiting cycle in global markets isn’t as structured as in the US and items may perhaps not move as speedily as you’d hope. It is critical not to get disheartened and to continue on networking, remaining involved in regional clubs, speaking to your classmates, professors, and CPD, and leveraging your connections.”