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Page updated 22.12.2019

Master School spurred a financial expert on a new career

In working life, do you feel like you no longer have aces up your sleeve? Expert in the field of trade Hanna-Maria Ojala decided to open a new deck of cards and start to deepen her expertise in trade with a Master’s degree.

Between the bookshelves of the library of Kaarina, you can hear the pages of books on sales and the economy being browsed.

– Here you can find the business books I used in my thesis, says Hanna-Maria Ojala. She has paced the corridors of the library many times before. Here Hanna-Maria not only studied but also wrote her Master’s thesis for Turku University of Applied Sciences in autumn 2018.

However, before we get to that, let’s go back to the starting point of this study path.

Master School combines work and studies flexibly

Hanna-Maria graduated from Turku University of Applied Sciences with a BBA degree in 2003. After that, she spent almost 15 years in working life, before the curious and reform-minded Hanna-Maria started to think about going back to school.

– I wanted to study to deepen my expertise and gain new insights into my work, she describes her feelings from a couple of years back.

She got down to business and submitted her application! Soon Hanna-Maria noticed that she was about to start her studies at TUAS’ Master School, in the degree programme in Business Development. In the working life oriented Master School, studies are completed flexibly alongside work. A central factor in the studies is that students can easily create an entity, which is suitable for them.

– It was great that I got to decide what I wanted to focus on. I could also do exercises about topics that interested me on the courses. This way, I could deepen my own expertise, Hanna-Maria says thankfully.

New interests and people

The Master’s degree study module in business administration, which lasts two years, is a versatile combination of practice and theory, not forgetting new acquaintances. Hanna-Maria says that she was pleasantly surprised by how different professional groups the members of her study group came from.

– It was exciting to notice that people do a lot of similar things in the public sector as we do in the private sector. Especially libraries are pioneers in many things, such as in responding to the challenges of the future, she praises.

When you feed a curious mind with new things, you will have a similar experience as Hanna-Maria – you start to crave more.

– At first, I wanted to deepen my expertise in finance, but I soon got interested in entirely new things. In the end, I was inspired by well-being at work and teamwork, for example, she reveals.

Let’s get back to the library of Kaarina and the present moment. Hanna-Maria says that in the end, the thesis which she wrote in the building handled utilizing Twitter in B2B sales. How did a finance expert come up with the idea of combining social media and B2B sales?

– For my entire career, I’ve worked with sales and customers. I chose social media as the topic of my thesis, because I wanted to better understand the opportunities it provides for sales work, she says.

“The idea of what I want and what I don’t want got stronger”

Masters of Business Administration often work in expert, development or managerial positions. Hanna-Maria also considers Master School having had a great impact on her career. 

– During the studies, the idea of what I want and what I don’t want got stronger. Now I see that my interests are in sales, customer relations and developing the business of companies, she says.

Hanna-Maria recommends the studies especially to those who wish to learn new things and feel that career-wise they’re stuck in a rut.

– Self-development is important, because workplaces and working life seem to change all the time. As long as you have the stamina to study and learn, you will always be a pioneer in working life.