Baylor EMBA 2015
Co-Founder & CTO, Valify
Knowing he had gone as far as he could go in his career as a software developer, Matt Clark wanted a better understanding of business to bolster his technical background as well as have the credentials to go along with that. Though Matt had an affinity for Baylor as an undergraduate alumnus, he researched the different EMBA programs in DFW. He selected Baylor because the schedule was the best fit as well as he knew the ROI would work financially.
In fact, less than a year after starting the program, an opportunity arose for Matt to start a new business. “I took what I was learning in finance real-time to model the current business I was in to determine that it was not worth my time to remain on my current career path. Even with the higher risk, starting Valify was going to be worth more to me than staying where I was," says Matt.
An unexpected benefit of the program that Matt found was the Baylor Network. “I’m generally an introvert. I did not go into the program thinking I was going to make great connections," declares Matt. The contacts he made during the Baylor program have been invaluable and personally rewarding. In talking about the Baylor Network, Matt emphasized that professors are a large part of it. He continues to stay in touch with professors, reaching out for the occasional business advice.
The biggest takeaway from the MBA experience for Matt has been lifelong learning. The ability to read current articles and books, and then take the time to sit back and apply that knowledge to Valify has really driven how we build our company. The structured approach to preparing and executing negotiations has proven incredibly invaluable as he applied those techniques to acquiring funding, hiring employees, and arranging channel partner agreements. “There is not a week that goes by that I don’t apply a lesson I learned in the program to our business," says Matt.
Balancing working full-time, staying involved at home, and earning an MBA is not for the faint of heart. Matt wants others who are considering earning their MBA to know, “You get out of it, what you put into it." Matt came to Baylor for very specific objectives and left with a completely different perspective as well as a brand new company experiencing triple digit growth.