22 May 2020

Insights from an international MBA – part 1

Author: Vito Conversano, International Flex EMBA candidate

An international format for an MBA program provides an additional experience that is not limited to learning new subjects or theoretical/practical concepts. Meeting people from all around the world creates a mixture of points of view which enriches the experience at MIP. Let’s hear it directly in the words of my friends and colleagues on the i-Flex program, Claudio Miguel Jamisse Buque from Mozambique and Heidemarie Haupt from Italy.

Why did you decide to pursue an international MBA program?

Heidemarie: I was at a phase in my life where I felt it was time to pursue a unique opportunity to launch a truly global career. I am persuaded that an effective leader should be curious about the world and eager to learn about other markets, management styles and cultural differences. I already had a solid experience in living and working at corporate level across cultures in companies where background diversity was considered as a pivotal value, so it came quite naturally to me to look for an international environment to engage in my EMBA. I carefully scouted a number of European business schools which offered such an opportunity and finally landed on MIP as the one most suited to me.

What do you think are the main advantages of an international environment?

Heidemarie: When I submitted my motivation letter to the school, my opening paragraph was entitled “with heart and mind wide open”. I think this is fairly self-explanatory with regard to what I expect from an international environment. In business especially, leaders must be able to assess global differences and adjust to the local business environment: gaining a wider knowledge of the diverse cultures becomes essential. We can call it elasticity to adjust, ability to think out of the box, readiness to see further, a willingness to prevent bias: to me, the mix of these attitudes is proving to be the real advantage to living, studying and working in an international environment.

How can this i-Flex program provide support in making an international contribution?

Heidemarie: When I was told about the i-Flex opportunity, I thought it was an excellent way to incorporate technology in advanced education. The most relevant advantage is surely the flexibility this format allows, which is even more relevant in an international context with colleagues connected from the four corners of the earth. But I especially like what seems to be the uniqueness of the program, which brings the School one step forward, well projected in the technological environment where we all are expected to work.

How might a multicultural environment impact your personal and professional life during classes?

Heidemarie: I believe a lot in cultural contamination. I can visualize it as a snowball effect, further amplified by the participants’ different backgrounds. Sharing different experiences, encouraging different mind-sets and approaches brings an enormous added valued to the program. MIP has managed to select a bunch of incredibly smart and talented people for this EMBA, and I do feel truly privileged to be part of this group.

What do you expect this program will bring to your life after graduation?

Heidemarie: The first word that comes to my mind is value. I am here to learn, both to learn new things and to learn how to do things that I already know differently. I expect to be able to use this added value properly in my career and in my personal life. The solid professional and personal network that I am building here is something that will stay and grow for the time being, enriching any other experience that comes afterwards.

Are you curious to know what Claudio thinks about it? Stay tuned for the second interview and find out more about the international experience of i-Flex.

22 May 2020

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