Group Head of Operations at Physical Properties Testers Group (PPT Group).
Hello, my name is Kevin Diskin, and I am an alumnus of the University of Huddersfield. I recently completed the part-time MBA course with Huddersfield Business School, whilst in full-time employment at Physical Properties Testers Group (PPT Group).
The Master of Business Administration (MBA) is a globally recognised postgraduate management degree that is highly valued by top employers. Completing an MBA enhances individuals’ professional development by providing leadership skills, improving communication, and helping develop a strategic and global management perspective.
When studying for an MBA at Huddersfield Business School, the programme has an overarching focus on responsible leadership and offers four areas of knowledge and skill development to prepare individuals for senior management roles. The part-time MBA course at Huddersfield Business School lasts for two years and allows individuals who work full-time to study for an MBA qualification whilst continuing in their current role.
In this blog, you will hear from Kevin Diskin, the Group Head of Operations at Physical Properties Testers Group (PPT Group). Kevin completed the part-time MBA course with Huddersfield Business School in 2022 after previously studying Mechanical Engineering at the School of Computer and Engineering here at the University. In 2020 he returned to obtain the prestigious MBA qualification to further his career.
I previously spent four years at the University of Huddersfield, studying for a part-time degree in Mechanical Engineering. Within those four years, I came to value the University’s facilities and the wealth of experience and knowledge that resides in the staff.
When I was deciding to return to university and undertake my MBA, I had no doubt that I would return to Huddersfield. Between completing my degree and starting my MBA, it was clear how much the university had invested in expanding the campus and its facilities.
Additionally, the University of Huddersfield continues to attract a high calibre of staff, along with a variety of students that choose to study there from a multitude of industries and cultures. This offers a fantastic opportunity to get accustomed to the vast array of learning opportunities on offer.
Up until starting my MBA, most of my working experience, skills and knowledge were based on the operational elements of the engineering and manufacturing sectors. However, I had the desire to develop a broader skill set within the business environment that would allow me to perform at a higher level for my employer and support my ambition for career development ultimately leading to roles with wider remits of responsibility.
The MBA has provided me with a globally recognised qualification and helped me develop my knowledge within business functions that I had only limited exposure to previously. This has given me the confidence and ability to better understand, and competently communicate, with all business functions both locally, and globally, from a variety of cultures, allowing for a more informed and beneficial interaction.
The MBA has also allowed me to build my professional network with other learners whose shared experiences offered new insights and ideas which resulted in both, very interesting lectures, and innovative solutions to apply in the workplace.
As the course is accredited by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI), it also offers a route to chartership which helps me to continue down the path of lifelong learning. The MBA has given me more confidence in my ability, and given me the tools to successfully apply what I’ve been taught on the course, into the workplace, which as a result has opened up the door to different career opportunities.
After completing the MBA, I was promoted from a local UK site role to a more senior position in a globally focused group role. Further portraying the benefits of the MBA and the professional development and career opportunities that obtaining this qualification offers.
Every module of the MBA offered skills which were beneficial to my previous and current roles:
An overarching learning point was the importance of having a strategic outlook to gain a competitive advantage as a business. This strategic theme was woven into several of the modules.
The MBA gave me more financial acumen which in my previous and current role, is key to succeeding - given that operations management is the continual improvement of numerous business functions to maximise efficiencies and profit through the management of the associated resources.
It helped to develop my leadership and people management skills which are key to developing high performing teams that can work towards improving organisational performance.
My MBA offered me the valuable skill of self-reflection which is often regarded as one of the most important skills when looking to personally develop and learn.
I often communicate and work with teams across the world and that comes with a variety of cultures. I now have an elevated appreciation of the differences this presents, which has helped me in my approach to different teams.
Through my MBA, I developed my academic research skills and learnt how to apply these to solve prominent business problems.
Additionally, it has given me the necessary skills and motivation to become a continuous learner which will help me continue with my personal and professional development.
My employer offered me their support from the start - allowing me the flexibility in my work schedule to commit to the time required on campus, along with their sponsorship. Throughout the MBA, I found the best way to reinforce and expand on the learning from the lectures, was to discuss it with those that work in the business functions that we were studying at any one time.
My family encouraged me from the start and did everything required to afford me the time I needed to study outside of work. This was pivotal, as balancing a challenging career, family life and part-time study was at times demanding.
Huddersfield Business School
Huddersfield Business School provided additional lectures on academic writing to ensure that anyone undertaking the MBA who may have taken a break from academia for an extended period, could get up to speed quickly and confidently.
Each lecturer was open to debate and elaborated on the lecture material when asked, further developing our understanding. They were also available outside of lecture time for further questions and to provide advice. This helped me close the loop of learning when I had gone back to work, spoken to people, applied the learnings, and had further questions beyond the lecture material. This means that the more you put into the course, the more you get out of it.
If you are interested in studying the Master of Business Administration (MBA) and would like more information, please visit the MBA course finder page below.