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MBA Alumni meet current MBA Students

Each semester, the MBA Pforzheim arranges the event “MBA Alumni meet current MBA Students “. Eight MBA-alumni from different industries joined the meeting this time. The event offers current MBA-students interaction with the ones who already finished their MBA-studies and are successfully established in the working world.

MBA program director Prof. Harald Strotmann inaugurated the event. Then each alumnus held a short individual presentation, in which they introduced themselves, spoke about their MBA experience, their current job position and gave useful advice to current students:

Dr. Reha Tözün (MBA Class of 2004), Business Manager and Senior Consultant at BridgingIT GmbH said, when looking for a job, grades were important for the pre-selection process, but once invited to an interview, the personality and story of each student was what matters. For the MBA-studies, he recommended building relation- and friendships with fellow-students. He also mentioned the importance of putting effort into learning German. 

Simon Hog (MBA Class of 2009), Management Consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers AG, pointed out that Consulting was not for everyone but that the field was very interesting and one could get to know a lot about different industries, clients and products. To current MBA-students he recommended to be a team-player, to spend time with each other and to support each other. 
 
Luis Jimenez Encabo (MBA Class of 1998), General Manager of Business Development Mechanical Drives at Siemens said he chose the MBA Pforzheim because of its internationality and its strong network of partner universities, which gave him the opportunity to study a semester in the United States. As an advice to current students he said, when being a team leader, all members of a team should be treated equally as this would support a good group dynamic. 
 
Dongxiao Yang (MBA Class of 2015), working in Organizational Development at Bosch, gave two important advices to current students: first of all, to the international participants: “Learn German, as it will probably be the most important requisite to find a job”, and secondly she said: “Get your foot inside a company; it does not matter if it is a working student or a project or a summer internship. As long as you are inside a company. Take the opportunity.”

Yamel Lima Baquero (MBA Class of 2003), Logistics Manager at Daimler, said that as a student, one had the highest chances of getting inside a company. Once a student was inside the company and has proven that he or she has what it takes to get a permanent position, even co-workers would try to help a student taking the next step through an internship or master thesis. This might end up in getting a permanent position after graduation. Her advice: “Get inside the company and from there, move to the department or position you want”.

Himanshu Sahoo (MBA Class of 2012), Project Manager of Corporate Development at Vorwerk Group reassured that the MBA Pforzheim gave him the possibility to switch careers. He went from physiotherapy to sports to a Management position in business. What matters was how one tells his story. Himanshu said: “Tell this story in a compelling way in your cover letter and tailor this cover letter specifically to the company and position you’re applying to.”

Lena Terfehr (MBA Class of 2006), Strategy Consultant of Talent & Organization at Accenture, told the current MBA students: “The MBA is a door opener, which lets you decide what you want to do with your career. It broadens possibilities. In my case, it offered me the chance to spend one MBA semester abroad   at the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad, where I got to learn from the country’s culture and perspective.”

Simon Kono (MBA Class of 2014), Marketing Research Consultant at HKM Hamburg stated that there were positive and negative aspects to working in small and large companies. To determine what makes one happy, is what he said was important. In small companies you knew exactly what everyone was doing and the direction of the company, besides there was also more flexibility and speed. His advice to the international participants: “Knowing German will play a huge role when looking for a job. For this reason, invest time and effort in learning it and improving it.”

In a second part, current MBA students then had time to ask questions to each of the speakers. Engaging in informal conversations, while having pizza and beverages, formed the final part of the event. Once again, we would like to thank the above mentioned alumni for taking their time to coming to Pforzheim and sharing their valuable experiences! The next alumni meeting will take place in May, 2017.