Melbourne Business School News MBAs are all in the family

MBAs are all in the family

Good-natured sibling rivalry extended all the way to Melbourne Business School for sister and brother Kim Heath and Michael Tinkler.

Kim and Michael found themselves undertaking their MBAs at the same time in the early 1990s, which Kim said led to some “good natured competition”. 

And as if two members of the family doing MBAs wasn’t enough, Kim (MBA 1996) said their younger brother Andrew, who now works for Hydro Tasmania, had also moved to the United States to complete his MBA fulltime.

Kim, who is Head of Technology Enterprise Applications at National Australia Bank, did her undergraduate degree in Computer Science and was at Ansett as the IT Business Solutions Manager at the time she started her part time MBA.

“We all took a different approach to the MBA, so we did talk and compare our experiences,” Kim said.  

“The three of us each had our first child while doing the MBA so it was a busy time.  I think having this common experience was much more uniting than it was competitive,” she said.

“The benefits have been as much about professional and personal growth as career opportunity,” Kim said.

The MBA provided some broader skills but also the confidence to tackle challenges or take on opportunities that weren’t clearly aligned with what I’d done in the past.” 

Michael (EMBA 1994), who is the Chief Executive Officer of Peter’s Ice Cream, said from his perspective there was no competition with Kim because she is “way more academic than I am”.

At the time he started his EMBA, Michael was working at Johnson & Johnson running a Total Quality Management Program for the company. Prior to that he’d spent a decade working in Sales and Marketing at Unilever and Cadbury Schweppes. 

He said he chose Melbourne Business School because of its reputation and the EMBA class structure.

“I wanted to prepare myself to move to a director level role. To do so I needed to broaden my knowledge base and an MBA was the logical way to do that,” Michael said.

“The EMBA gave me an exposure to, and a greater understanding of the functions in which I hadn’t worked like finance, manufacturing, logistics, human resources and IT.” 

“As you move from functional specialist into general management roles, a broader understanding of how a business functions is essential.  An MBA provides that breadth.” 

Kim said she’s looking forward to catching up with classmates and friends from the at this year’s Alumni Reunion on 17-19 June.

It’s a particularly special occasion as Kim will celebrate her 20-year reunion and is one of the 1996 class representative to help coordinate celebrations.

“I made some lasting friendships but there are others I’ve not seen for a while so it will be great to see everyone again,” Kim said.

“I’m also interested in hearing some of the thought leadership sessions and hearing the latest developments.”

Alumni Reunion is on 17-19 June. To view the event program and book tickets go to the