Year Graduated: 2015
Current Role: R&D Project Leader at EUROCONTROL
The class experience was enjoyable, particularly because classes were enriched with real-world examples shared by both the faculty and students.
Why did you decide to do an EMBA and why did you choose the INSEAD EMBA?
When I was a consultant, doing an MBA was a standard path. But before I had a chance to start the MBA process, I got a job opportunity at EUROCONTROL in France. The plan to do an MBA re-entered my life in 2014, when EUROCONTROL decided to do a pilot programme and (partially) sponsor an EMBA for one employee. It was an open selection process, where out of 1200 employees, approximately 20 applied and I ended up taking the spot. Although I was not in a position to choose the school, I was extremely happy that my employer chose INSEAD!
How has the INSEAD EMBA changed your life and/or perspectives?
The inner transformation I experienced during the programme was a lot deeper than I expected. Initially, I thought that the EMBA would just involve learning content and having discussions with fellow participants and faculty members. But the entire programme, coupled with the leadership development journey and the exposure to talented individuals from 55 countries, enriches you so much that a transformational effect is unavoidable. I returned to my job with a lot of knowledge and fresh perspectives, which I am now trying to apply in the non-profit context.
Do share with us your class experience.
Being an engineer, I found corporate finance challenging, but the faculty members were able to make any subject interesting and appealing. The faculty are world-class professors that have an excellent track record and very good class delivery. The class experience was enjoyable, particularly because classes were enriched with real-world examples shared by both the faculty and students. It was easy to make direct connections between cases studies and our jobs.
How did the multi-campus structure benefit you?
The multi-campus structure is an excellent idea. Not only do participants come from different parts of the world, but we also get to take classes in different countries (in our class it was not only Fontainebleau, Singapore and Abu Dhabi, but also San Francisco and Beijing). Visiting countries such as the UAE and Singapore, meeting successful alumni, attending high-profile conferences and events contribute a lot to the entire journey one takes in GEMBA. Coming from the aviation sector, I was really impressed by the progress that the UAE and Singapore have made in the aviation sector. Thus, the multi-campus structure is both culturally and professionally enriching.
Is there a particular module that you enjoyed most, and why?
I enjoyed the Electives and Key Management Challenges (KMCs). In particular, the Negotiation elective in Fontainebleau and Innovation management KMC in Singapore because I could relate my day-to-day work challenges to the topics and at the same time, learn them in a culturally different environment.
Did the Leadership Development Programme (LDP) make an impact on you?
We all believed we knew who we were until we started to receive some “tough love” from our coach and LDP partners. We started to question everything. For example, when I compare my first LDP reflection paper with the last one, it is evident how big of an impact the journey had on me and on my learning agenda. I am grateful to my LDP partners and coach for all the moments spent together.
What advice would you give potential participants considering an INSEAD EMBA?
Try to get a lot of good sleep, as it becomes very precious (and important for your health) and sort out work challenges before starting the GEMBA programme. The study is tough, but it is also a lot of fun. You will make lifelong memories and cultivate new friendships.