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Using Creativity in New and Productive Ways

Rohan Bhatt (MMM '22) has always been a creative person. Thanks to Northwestern's MMM program, he is learning to use that creativity to drive impact and create change.

Rohan Bhatt (MMM '22)Rohan Bhatt (MMM '22) has always loved the creative process. Growing up, he was frequently in his school’s art room to work on a new project, or behind the keys of a piano trying to perfect another song. 

Now a professional, Bhatt is working to meld that creativity with the technical side of his brain. After spending five years working at a strategy consulting firm, he enrolled in MMM, a dual-degree program between Northwestern Engineering and the Kellogg School of Management. MMM features a unique combination of design thinking and foundational business knowledge that allows Bhatt to use his consulting experience to analyze information, and his creativity to help solve problems. 

“When I found MMM, it seemed to provide the perfect mix of creativity, design, technology, and core business acumen,” Bhatt said. “The program pulled together all the threads that would enable me to pursue a career placing creativity and innovation at its core.” 

One year into the program, Bhatt is already seeing the coursework's impact on his own strategic thinking, particularly when it comes to solving problems. Before MMM, he broke an issue into parts, researched each one, and then hoped to arrive at what he considered a “right” answer. That was often based on conventional wisdom or what worked for others, though, not by his own methods at finding meaningful results.

Thanks to MMM, Bhatt now sees problem solving differently. He begins tackling an issue by speaking with the people affected by the problem to get their perspective on what is going wrong and how it may be corrected. Then, instead of jumping to what he feels is the right solution, he creates pools of potential ideas and then refines his understanding of the problem. This approach epitomizes the human-centered design approach at the core of MMM.

“MMM fuses a traditional MBA with an innovative design degree,” Bhatt said. “It's critical to note that the design component isn't necessarily about aesthetics. Instead, it's about developing empathy to understand human needs and then iteratively and creatively developing tangible solutions.” 

This past summer, Bhatt implemented this approach and other knowledge gained in MMM as an intern at Adobe, where he was a product marketing manager within the company’s Commerce Cloud team. He since has signed on to join Adobe full time after graduation. 

Thanks to MMM, he not only is finding a new way to flex his creative muscles, but he's learned how to use them to drive impact and create change. 

“The MMM program doesn't just teach a bunch of business knowledge, but really focuses deeply on a methodology for tackling problems, be it designing a new product or service, growing a new company from the ground up, fending off competitors, or whatever else I might face,” Bhatt said. “Creativity is an incredible asset in the business world, so own it and share your ideas.”

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