German. Saint Petersburg State University GSOM, Russia. Cems Master in International Management, 2022 graduate. Currently on exchange at Cornell University, US
What made Saint Petersburg the ideal solution for you?
I’ve always been curious to think outside the box as many of my friends and family have studied in places Germans choose more often, like London. I wanted to go places that I haven’t been to much before, if at all, to get out of my comfort zone and see how things are in different countries.
And I had a general interest in Russian culture, language and people. I’ve heard that St. Petersburg is amazingly beautiful, which it indeed is. The school also has an excellent reputation. It gives foreigners the chance to earn a government funded place, which I did, so I don’t have to pay for my study program.
In addition, the political situation between Russia and Europe is not always easy, so in the future it would be good if I could help build bridges instead of burning them. I think it’s important to have this cultural exchange.
Danish / Australian. Copenhagen Business School, MBA. Graduated in 2021. Partner, McKinsey, Copenhagen, Denmark
What advice would you give to people considering an MBA?
My advice is to think about the reasons why you want to do this. Whether it’s building your business toolbox, expanding your professional network, changing industries or jobs, or moving to a new country, it’s important to think through your goal so that you can focus on what counts for you throughout the MBA.
It’s a busy year and staying clear on your goals is essential to achieving them. Do your research on which schools are best for you based on your career goals and your reasons for studying an MBA. Look at the curriculum, including major subjects, leadership and personal development programs, additional tracks, and the size and diversity of the cohort.
On a practical level, research the location of the school, expected cost of living and duration of the program, and consider the overall cost of the course.
Finally, prioritize the schools you want to apply to and send your applications. You have an exciting journey ahead of you.
Ranking of the 95 best European business schools of 2021
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American / Belgian. Vlerick Business School, Executive MBA Weekend, 2021. Global Head of Cell Therapy Policy, Novo Nordisk, Brussels, Belgium
How do you apply what you learned in the course to your work?
I moved to a new job two months before starting the MBA. It was an advantage to do the MBA at the same time as starting the new job because I applied my coursework directly to the company.
During financial management, for example, I studied annual reports in detail. For the other trainings, I interviewed colleagues from different departments to understand and analyze the approach of our company.
Additionally, as a public affairs manager, it was essential for me to gain a thorough understanding of my new business. The success of the function depends on in-depth knowledge of the company and on close collaboration between many departments, including regulatory, commercial, operational and research functions.
The MBA allowed me to connect and collaborate cross-functionally in a more meaningful way across geographies and departments.
Colombian. HHL Graduate School of Management, Master of Science, finance track, graduates 2022. Intern at SpinLab – The HHL Accelerator, Leipzig, Germany
How has the master’s in management helped your career?
It really changed my career.
I had worked for three years at the stock exchange in Colombia. Doing a master’s degree in management, especially in Germany, changed the idea I had previously of having a successful future working in a large, well-known company.
The masters at HHL have taught me that there are tons of opportunities to build a successful career by being innovative and focusing on responsibility.
I am now aware that I want to generate an impact. It starts with being a leader now and in the future. It starts with doing something in the present and understanding that it’s not just about growing in a big business, but building and helping small businesses grow.
Swiss. inside management training, including the management acceleration program. Medical Director, Anesthesiology, Thun and Bern region, Switzerland
Did something surprise you in the course?
It surprised me how easy going the business school people are.
Insead is a fountain for business and it’s the place to be, so I expected more arrogance. But it was really friendly and the teachers called us by our names.
Another surprise is the diversity of the people they choose for the program. There were 34 course participants, from 17 countries, and all held different positions and leadership profiles.
Most of the people were in fairly large positions because the program was funded by their company. It was very interesting for me as a doctor because I couldn’t understand some of the jobs they described. I had a new outlook on life: it opened my eyes and I’m happy for it.