Emily Adams: Featured MBA Advisor

Can you please tell us about your academic and professional background?

I graduated with highest honors from University of California (UC), Santa Cruz where I received a bachelor’s degree in anthropology with a concentration in physical anthropology and a minor in earth science. I recently completed my MBA at the Lorry I. Lokey Graduate School of Business and I’m passionate about integrating social & environmental impact into for-profit business models. My professional experience includes 5 years working with small businesses and entrepreneurs across a variety of functions, including operations, finance, marketing, and consulting.

Why did you decide to join Centro as an MBA Advisor?

I recognized that Centro would be a unique learning opportunity. As an MBA Advisor not only would I be able to use the skills I was learning in my coursework to help an entrepreneur grow their business, I would also learn lessons that can’t be taught in the classroom; what it’s like working with clients, relationship building, balancing different work and communication styles, dealing with ambiguity, and overcoming the numerous obstacles to small business ownership, just to name a few.

One of the perks of working with chefs and food entrepreneurs ... the samples!

One of the perks of working with chefs and food entrepreneurs ... the samples!

Which businesses/entrepreneurs did you advise?

Azalina’s Malaysian food cuisine

Can you tell us about a challenge that you faced?

Time. Entrepreneurs and MBA students are inherently busy creatures. Syncing schedules is always rough, and it can be quite a challenge for entrepreneurs to plan for long term growth and stability when there are myriad activities demanding their attention in the present. As the advisor, it is important to manage time well, setting clear deadlines that respect both the entrepreneur’s and your time, and to communicate clearly with the entrepreneur to keep the project moving forward. It can often be challenging but it’s a great opportunity to learn.

What are you up to now?

I just completed my MBA and recently joined One PacificCoast Bank & Foundation as a Financial Analyst and Program Manager.