Alum of the Month - February 2019

Elisabeth Prager

'In both a work and a personal sense, the programme has provided friends, coaches and colleagues in a way I hadn't expected'.
Elisabeth Prager


  • Programme studied: Executive Global MSc in Management
  • Year of Graduation: 2017
  • LinkedIn profile

Alum of the Month for February is Elisabeth. Since graduating, Elisabeth has gone from finance to healthcare, from London to Mumbai and from for-profit to charitable foundation.

What’s your current job?

Director of Strategy – Tata Trusts Cancer Care Programme. What does this mean on a day to day basis? Well, it means that I support in the creation and subsequent implementation of a strategy to roll out India’s most ambitious cancer care programme.

The Cancer Care Programme has the vision of transforming cancer care in India and aims to provide affordable, accessible and high-quality cancer care to the low and middle income population. There are multiple aspects of strategy that play into this, including what the overall healthcare model looks like, what the unique value proposition will be and how the commercials, the business, the operating model and the culture of the organisation will support this.

Once all of these questions are answered, it is up to my team and I to make sure the implementation is in line with the strategy and is tracking against pre-defined performance indicators and long-term outcomes. Naturally, all of this is easier said than done!

Where have you worked previously?

I have spent the majority of my career working in several roles in the financial services industry. This allowed me to get exposure to a wide variety of roles within organisations, understand how a company really works and partake in some strategic and complex change programmes. Armed with this commercial understanding I then became a management consultant where I got even more exposure to solving problems, creating and building new commercial propositions and developing and implementing strategy.

How has the programme you studied helped your career since graduation?

The programme has helped me in three main ways:

1) Mentors and colleagues: in both a work and a personal sense, the programme has provided friends, coaches and colleagues in a way I hadn’t expected. For instance, I’m in India only because one of my classmates recommended I join the project!

2) Content: Naturally, I learned a lot from lectures and the reading we were given. Those most helpful for the roles I’ve been in have included theories about culture, organisational behaviour, leadership, marketing and (of course!) strategy.

3) Appreciation of perspective: From two counts, this has been helpful: firstly, the discussions we had throughout the course – whether formal or informal – gave me an insight into multiple different points of view. Secondly, the conversations we had gave me an appreciation of things I can and perhaps cannot influence in a bigger picture.

How are you having an impact on business and society?

I’d like to think the programme I’m working on is doing just that…

On top of that, I have the honour and opportunity of working in a country which is grappling with subjects like gender equality. As a woman in the leadership team of the cancer care programme, I try to role model certain behaviours that I hope will impact and inspire some of my junior colleagues – both male and female.

What motivates you?

Learning, adventure, making a difference to someone else’s life both big and small, taking something and making it bigger and better.

What are some of your best memories from studying in the Department of Management?

The treasure hunt we did on day one as an ice breaker, lengthy and intense conversations about some managerial or leadership problem, sitting on a bus in Bangalore traffic, a classmate dressing up as superman on our last formal meal, enjoying an after-class cocktail at the Hoxton.