It is a small apartment – one room and a bathroom. The room is partitioned into two: the kitchen is separated with the rest by a bar counter that runs along its edge; the rest of the room has a bed, a showcase, two single-seater sofas, a small dining table with a couple of chairs, and three bar stools next to the counter. The side facing outside has windows running end-to-end – the room is filled with light during the day. From the balcony one can see lake Geneva in the distance, and, on clear days, the mountains on the far side.
I’m in Wife’s apartment in Lausanne, Switzerland. It sounds strange to me as well, the phrase “Wife’s apartment”; I’ll have to get used to living in two places over the next eleven months, when Wife shall be doing her MBA at IMD.
We got here last Sunday, driving through snow-covered meadows (I still cannot decide if I like Switzerland better in its green outfit or white). Our routine in the last few days has fallen into a pattern: I get out in the morning and walk to the parking lot next to the lake to place a ticket for the day (it is too expensive to park in front of our apartment), and on my walk back I pick up fresh croissants for breakfast. We spend the morning and afternoon indoors – reading, cooking, setting up the apartment – and in the evening we go shopping (the never-ending list containing things needed for the new home) or meet other IMD batchmates who have recently moved in.
It is a mixed batch, with people from various backgrounds and nationalities. Most students are over thirty (the average experience of an IMD MBA candidate is seven years), and have been in middle-management. Conversations so far have revolved around their background and past experiences, why they chose IMD over other schools (with INSEAD topping the list of discarded colleges), what salaries the previous batches received ( $120K per annum seems to be the average), and what they intend to do after their MBA. It appears most people are looking for a change in their line of work – they’re hoping to figure out what they’d like to do as the course progresses. But there are some who wish to get a broader outlook on management (in contrast to the specific area – like Sales – they have been working on so far), and a course with a focus on General Management seems an appropriate choice for such candidates.
Lausanne is a beautiful city. I’ve seen only parts surrounding the lakeside (I had posted some pictures last year) – there is a lot more to explore, and I hope to do that during the weekends I come visiting over the next eleven months.