Yaasha Hasan, a Laidlaw Scholar at London Business School, on expanding healthcare access using technology and promoting an inclusive community at LBS.
I am an MBA Candidate at London Business School. Prior to this, I was the Merchandising Lead at Macy's Inc and Gap Inc., where I spent 6 years developing and implementing assortment strategies in collaboration with several stakeholders to drive multi-million dollar businesses.
After a life-changing health diagnosis and treatment in 2017, I decided to get an MBA to pivot to a career in healthcare to expand healthcare access to more people using technology. I spent 6 months working in the Digital Transformation Team at the NHS, spearheading several projects to optimize the UK health system. Right after, I joined Sensopore as the CEO & Co-founder, defining the strategy alongside two colleagues to bring our innovative cancer detection device to market. Although the start-up ultimately didn’t work out, I am excited to be in the space working closely with other dreamers to make the healthcare world a better place for all!
Outside of work, you’ll find me dancing to beats of music from all around the world (Salsa, Bollywood, Hip Hop, etc.), advocating for equity and social justice (Women in Business Conference Lead, Healthcare Club Lead, Socioeconomic Inclusion Club Lead), and travelling to places near and far in search of adventures!
I applied for the Laidlaw Scholarship because I always knew I wanted to pursue an MBA but I also knew that journey would come at a cost that I wouldn’t be able to afford. After learning more about the Laidlaw scholarship and its values, I realized that securing it would actually make it possible for me to pursue my dreams - and it has absolutely proven to do exactly so!
What is your favourite memory of your time as a Laidlaw Scholar?
One of my favourite memories as a Laidlaw Scholar was hosting an event at London Business School, the first of its kind, to have a discussion around socio-economic inclusion in the community. For the first time in the school’s history, a conversation around what could be done more to create a more inclusive space for individuals from all economically different walks of life - from the classroom environment to extracurricular activities - had taken place. This conversation led to school club leadership to create more economically inclusive opportunities for all members of the school through subsidized tickets and other activities. I am happy to have contributed to the beginning of what I hope will be a legacy of a more inclusive space for students at LBS.
How have the people you've met impacted your experience?
There is really a culture around kindness and generosity at London Business School, at a level that I have never seen before anywhere. From relationships built in the classroom, to those in conferences through the healthcare club and Women in Business Club, to those in the adventures across the many countries travelled around the world - my life has completely transformed. A spurt of curious thought leads to genuine professional exploration in just a matter of minutes over the phone thanks to many kind and generous souls that respond so positively to my cold LinkedIn messages just because of my London Business School connection. I have secured my dream summer internship at NHS just like that, and later met my former co-founder at Sensopore. And this is only the beginning - I have seen hundreds of doors open professionally into the world of healthcare, a world that I had no familiarity with before the MBA. I cannot wait to see how much more lies ahead in the future.
With all that I have received during my time here, it’s imperative for me that I pay it forward. I do that through speaking to as many people as possible who are interested in learning more about any topic I can be of help - LBS for prospective students, healthcare for current students or alums, or people curious about the MBA from all parts of the world.
Paying It Forward
I initially promised to pay it forward by being an avid ambassador for the foundation and London Business School by offering mentorship, interview prep, and any other help to prospective or current students.
Now that I have (almost) finished, I look back to realize that I have paid it forward not only by being an ambassador, speaking individually or as a panellist at different events, but I have also invested time and effort in several initiatives on campus to bring awareness and create opportunities for students from all gender and socioeconomic backgrounds by taking leadership positions in the Women in Business and Socio-Economic Inclusion Club.
Top 3 tips that will help someone become a better leader
- Invest in emotional intelligence - understanding people’s motivation and being empathetic will help you gain trust and influence.
- Lead by example to inspire but also encourage and appreciate authenticity!
- Be curious - Always be ready to learn, absorb, and adopt - you never know what comes in handy and when!
What advice would you give to a future Laidlaw Scholar?
If something sparks your curiosity in a conversation - whether it’s the industry you are interested in or the function or just a hobby - reach out to that person for a coffee chat! You never know what will come out of that conversation: the worst thing that will happen is that you will get to meet someone new!
Briefly describe a scene from the future you are striving to create.
It’s the year 2050, and everyone can afford and access the healthcare they need, regardless of differences in identity, whether it be socioeconomic, racial, or gender. Every human on earth will receive equitable healthcare.
📺 Currently binging: Casa de Papel
🎵 My current anthem: ‘Ekla Cholo Re’ by Rabindranath Tagore. Personal favorite - Classic Bengali song that encourages authenticity!
📚 My top book recommendation: The Master & Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov. One of a kind - what a whirlwind of a story - really makes you think!
🎧 Podcast obsession: How I built this with Guy Raz
🌆 The View out my Window: A beautiful street of London
Yaasha is a Laidlaw Scholar at London Business School. The Laidlaw Women's Business Education Scholarship aims to help build a pipeline of future women leaders through access to best-in-class education, resources and global networks by providing full and half scholarships to women who would not otherwise be in a position to reap the benefits of attending an outstanding school.
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