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MIM alumni voices

The Master's in Management at ESMT Berlin is an exciting, engaging, and fulfilling two years, during which you'll be exposed to demanding coursework, hands-on professional experiences, intercultural challenges, and an entire new network of colleagues and friends. Read below to learn about some of the stories of our vibrant MIM students and alumni.

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MIM Alumni Insights

Azra Habibija, MIM alumna, now works as a Management Consultant - Digital Transformation at KPMG Switzerland.

The MIM: The Inside Story

  • Gilles Bouman

     

     What were your personal highlights from your time at ESMT Berlin?

    "ESMT provides quite an all-in experience. It is up to the student to make use of that. I particularly liked the great class diversity - cultural and educational - and the passionate discussions that it created. As the professors are all very motivated and eager to share their knowledge, the class dynamics were something so different from what I’ve experienced before. And then there is the life outside of campus which should not be forgotten; Berlin is a great city and really buzzing. As said, the all-in experience is what makes it unique."

     

    What were your key takeaways from the MIM program?

    "My main learnings at ESMT were to adapt quickly to very different surroundings and being able to deliver when needed. Especially at the beginning of the program, when you are fresh and new, I experienced that it was quite a busy time. We were dragged into group work, had to secure internships, were doing other activities on the side and had to study the course content. In hindsight I realise that it taught us how to priorities, work together and quickly create high-quality end-products. Academically, I truly enjoyed writing my thesis. It was fun doing something purely for yourself and getting to discuss your topic with your supervisor who is an expert in the field."

     

    Did you participate in any student clubs? If so, which one and what were your tasks?

    I was part of the steering committee of the DigitalFuture Summit 2018, responsible for the Corporate Relations. It was a lot of extra work but very rewarding when everything came together. A must-go for people who are considering to study at ESMT!

     

    How have your studies at ESMT shaped your career thus far?

    I secured my job during my internship, as you probably expected. In that sense, the curriculum helped me getting this job. If it wasn’t for the internship period, I probably wouldn’t have done an internship during my Master's. I feel that this is a crucial part of the MIM curriculum. You get to develop a feeling of what you truly like during the program, and you can test that by targeting an internship in an industry or company that matches that feeling. For me, this played out very well.

     

    Any thoughts you like to share with future students?

    ESMT and the MIM program offers you a very complete package to develop yourself and make a step professionally and personally. Don’t sit back and wait for it to come to you, but make use of that and absorb what you like. I think that the outcome of the program can be very different for any student. Be ambitious and willing to work hard and try to make the most out of it for yourself!

  • Riccardo Cocchini

     

    What did you like about ESMT?

    I was enthusiastic at the hands-on approach adopted by ESMT.
    Working together with fellow students from 29 different countries, international faculty and major global corporations represented a truly challenging and thrilling experience. Moderately sized classes allow for a personal one-to-one relationship with fellows, professors and staff to the benefit of a prime educational experience.

     

    What did you learn?

    Both traditional as well as entrepreneurship-oriented courses were taught in a dynamic, applied and participative fashion. This carries the benefit of not only learning subjects, but also of developing interpersonal and analytical skills.

     

    How did ESMT help you transition into your career?

    ESMT exposes its students to an extensive network of alumni, corporations and events. This allows candidates to get insights from a variety of industries and business practices, thus connecting with those which raise one's interest the most.
    The program structure was co-designed with prominent corporations and aims at developing candidates as individuals, not only as students, making in this way a MIM curriculum particularly attractive to potential first-class employers.

  • Geng GENG (耿耿)

     

    What did you like about ESMT?

    "The best part of my experience in Berlin was the ESMT team. They were always available and helped us students out in case of any confusions or challenges, which I sincerely appreciated.“

     

    What did you learn?

    “The investment industry is looking for determined, adaptive and professional talent, and the ESMT Berlin MIM helped me to develop these required qualifications. The courses focus on how to learn quickly and independently and include soft skills workshops, which taught me how to interact more professionally."

     

    How did ESMT help you transition into your career?

    "The Career Services team at ESMT provided me with the support and methodologies to set my career goals and to specify my interests. These features helped me to successfully stand out among 250 applicants for the position to which I applied: So here I am now, working in the graduate program at Allianz Investment Management!"

  • Funda Kirezci

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  • Kateryna Malysheva

     

    What did you like about ESMT?

    "I enjoyed working in intercultural teams throughout the program. I am also convinced that the workload and time pressure, which we underwent during the modules, perfectly prepared us for the real working life."

     

    How did the MIM help you transition into your career?

    “Every bit of the MIM program contributed to my successful career transition. I think "conventional" universities do not put enough emphasis on the training of the soft skills, and this is something that ESMT is really good at. I acquired field expertise during my internship at Apricum, a boutique consultancy for the renewables based in Berlin. I perfected my analytical skills during the Value Chain Analytics specialization, and I applied all the knowledge learned during the social impact project with Deloitte. The MIM program equipped me with all the necessary skills and experiences to qualify for the position of a Business Consultant in the energy industry at Pricewaterhouse Coopers.”

     

     

     

     

  • Matida Ndlovu

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  • Ognjen Obucina

     

    What did you like about ESMT?

    "The diversity at ESMT Berlin is what drew me to the school in the first place. Learning how people from all over the world think and solve problems was truly eye opening. Second, the program is punishing and demanding. This turned out to be extremely positive, as it taught me how to prioritize when balancing multiple projects at once and how to work under pressure."

     

    What did you learn?

    "Everything I learned at ESMT Berlin has turned out to be useful one way or another. Beyond developing purely technical skills, I also learned how to think critically, how to act decisively and how to work - both as leaders and equal team members. I developed soft skills and emotional intelligence and this, I feel, is something that is lacking in many other schools. Personally, my biggest lesson was: Work on maximizing your strengths, rather than minimizing your weaknesses."

     

    How did the MIM help you transition into your career?

    "ESMT Berlin showed me that no task is insurmountable and it is this newly instilled attitude that has helped me transition into the "real" world of business. I have developed an attention to detail while keeping the ability to stay focused and this has helped me launch my career as a Consultant in the Oil & Gas Industry."

  • Bar Schwarz

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  • Yash Shah

     

    What did you like about ESMT?

    "The thing that I liked the most about ESMT Berlin is the international learning atmosphere. The diversity of ideas and expertise coupled with the experience of the professors is certainly unique and were the highlight of my experience at ESMT. I also loved how the simulations and business cases were taught using a hands-on approach. They helped to connect theoretical knowledge with practical insights."

     

    What did you learn?

    "I learned many new things about the business world that I was oblivious of due to my earlier focus on technical studies. This helped me prepare myself to step into managerial role immediately after graduation."

     

    How did the MIM help you transition into your career?

    "ESMT provided me business knowledge and taught me how to use a structured approach to real world business issues. As an engineer, I greatly benefited from delving deeper into the management principles behind the successes as well as the failures of MNCs. ESMT prepared me for the business world and helped me advance my career."

  • Karan Tibdewal

     

    What were your personal highlights from your time at ESMT Berlin?

    I learnt a lot from being in the same class as 28 different nationalities, and working with them in various team projects. I also had the chance to learn from some of the best professors in the field, who were always open and challenging us in terms of broadening our understanding of a particular topic. Both these aspects are a huge benefit for your career and self-development.

     

    What were your key takeaways from the MIM program?

    ESMT hosted various networking events with companies and alumni, which really helped me not only to network but to understand the corporate landscape in Germany and Berlin. Apart from the coursework, I also found the emphasis on topics such as body language, presentation skills, negotiation skills etc. to be very helpful and - surprisingly - not boring at all.

     

    Did you participate in any student clubs? If so, which one and what were your tasks?

    Unfortunately, I did not actively participate in any of the student clubs at the university as I was already working in the last year and trying out my data skills in a company.

     

    How have your studies at ESMT shaped your career thus far?

    The MIM was the perfect program to help me transition into my career for many reasons. The most important of them was the heavy weightage on practical experiences such as an internship, Social Impact Project (which we were responsible to source as well), and my personal preference to work during the internship. It is a real game changer for me because only by working you are able to start identifying your strengths.

     

    Any thoughts you like to share with future students?

    These two years can be the best time of your life. It offers a chance to make friends across the world, to learn from some of the great professors, and a chance to combine your theory with practical experience – Use it!

  • Fabio Minnei

     

    What were your personal highlights from your time at ESMT Berlin?

    "The whole master program was very well structured and designed. Moreover, you really get the full package: a great atmosphere, experienced professors, ambitious students, strong connections with corporates, modern facilities and a friendly staff. I can’t just emphasize one or few aspects, because it’s only when you combine all of them that you can get such a great outcome."

     

    What were your key takeaways from the MIM program?

    "Aside of all the high-level academic courses, what I consider really valuable were the improvements I made in dealing with stress, time-management, and group conflict resolution. Due to the fast-paced modules, with the help of various development skills sessions, I was able to improve my attitude towards issues as well as the management of divergent opinions in order to get the job done."

     

    Did you participate in any student clubs? If so, which one and what were your tasks?

    "I was responsible for the Finance workstream of the DigitalFuture Summit 2018. My colleagues and I put a lot of work and passion into this conference and I am proud of what we have achieved. I am confident that the DigitalFuture summit will become an important “trademark” for ESMT that will get more and more popular year after year."

     

    How have your studies at ESMT shaped your career thus far?

    "The strong connection between ESMT career services and Daimler Financial Services is the main reason why I am currently working there. After I did my Internship in the Financial Reporting Group department I continued as a working student and afterwards as a Financial Analyst. A big credit goes of course to the colleagues who started before me and left a good impression at Daimler. Every year more and more colleagues from ESMT join Daimler for an internship and later for a full time position. This clearly shows how well the good work of ESMT students is regarded from corporates."

    Any thoughts you like to share with future students?

    "ESMT has a lot to offer to its students, more than is actually feasible to do, due to time constraints. If you optimistically look forward to a great experience and you’re hard-working and ambitious, you will definitely get the best out of it!"

  • Nuño de la Concha Vega

    ESMT alumnus Nuño de la Concha Vega is a data consultant with Mercedes-Benz, a global automobile brand and a division of Daimler AG. He speaks with the ESMT team on his professional path from Spain to Germany and how data-driven business intelligence improves the client relationship.

     

    Nuño, every Marvel comic book hero has an origin story, what first placed them on the path of their success today. What’s yours?

     

    When I was a child, I was not really into Marvel comics but rather into The Adventures of Tintin. The main character of this comic, Tintin, is not the traditional superhero but rather a young reporter that adapts to circumstances around him, is full of curiosity, and who enjoys every experience life throws at him. He is probably not as glamorous as Marvel heroes are, but I personally find this much more real, due to its charismatic authenticity. Throughout his many adventures, he is always full of doubts, fears, and uncertainty. He is also brave and positive in every difficult situation. I think that having this type of attitude is his “success,” and it is similar to how I define success as well.

     

    My own origin story is primarily based on luck. I was lucky to grow up in a family and environment where I got all the love and support that a child needs to develop. My parents taught my sisters and me the ethics of effort, honesty, and commitment. My environment and the values instilled in me have provided me with the plentiful chances and opportunities throughout my life to develop the skills and confidence to continuously try to find my way to the person I want to become, while enjoying it along the way.

     

    Today, I can say that my focus is to find passion in what I do and to also learn and improve from challenging moments. And, of course, everything accompanied with lots of humor.

     

    You grew up in Spain but now call Germany your home. How have the similarities and differences of these two cultures affected your work for an international company like Mercedes-Benz?

     

    It has made me grow. I became more reflective and empathic, and therefore more aware of what is around me. I analyze the environment surrounding me in more detail. Being in Germany, I gained a new perspective. I began to notice various skills and aspects I wanted to learn to continue growing and to become the person I want to be. I met others who empower me to keep my essence and to contribute what I already have.

     

    I think all of us agree on the power of diversity – to have different points of view and different ideas and approaches that bring an infinite number of possibilities. Once this is clear, I think that the challenge is to provide the environment and mindset so that each individual can contribute all potential for a common vision, no matter the nationality.

     

    Mercedes-Benz aims to provide such an environment. There is room for improvement, but the ambition, determination, and commitment to reach the goal of continuing to be a German company within an international environment is there. As the Mercedes-Benz slogan says, “The best or nothing.”

     

    AI, big data, blockchain, business intelligence – there’s a lot of talk about the digital transformation! How are these new tools and perspectives affecting your work as a data consultant? (And how well do Mercedes-Benz clients understand their value?)

     

    I work in the field of advanced analytics, and these topics are the main pillars of our solutions-delivery business. The fast-growing and changing environment in data and analytics bring many challenges but also many opportunities. It is a field where you must be always up-to-date to keep being competitive but also to not lose sight of the final goal, which is to improve the quality of your product and efficiency in your processes.

     

    As data consultants in finance and controlling, and working closely with data scientists and engineers, we try to boost the intelligent use of analytics to improve the efficiency of our internal processes and to enhance the client user experience. To this end, in my role, I must first understand the business requirements for different use cases and then determine the methods and tools that best fulfill those requirements, not the other way around. This last point is important – it is a common misperception that it is more important to claim the use of AI, big data, and other buzzwords than to fully understand its impact on the client.

     

    I believe that Mercedes-Benz is successful because it is clearly client-oriented. The vast amount of data collected and the constant improvement of AI algorithms and tools allows us to enhance the driver experience. An example of this is Mercedes Me, a system in the car that can be connected to your smartphone. With voice or manual control, it allows the driver to not simply use different features, such as the navigation or setting the heating, but goes one step further to provide services such as maintenance management or up-to-the-minute traffic reports.

     

    The client is aware of the benefits of these features, but it is our goal to clearly communicate it and to ensure compliance in the usage of that data, in accordance with the legislation.

     

    You decided to pursue a MIM degree rather than an MBA. What were the factors in your early life that made the ESMT MIM program your next best step? In what ways did you get it right? And what did you get wrong?

     

    Like many other teenagers, 18-year-olds don’t know what they want to study. Our generation has luck, compared to the one of our parents, to have such a broad horizon of options. Nevertheless, this can also provoke pressure to find the right solution fast and at the first shot. This is rarely the case, however, which often leads to frustration.

     

    In my case, I studied telecommunications engineering – a combination of computer science and electrical engineering. After gaining some working experience, I realized I needed a change. That’s why I wanted to try something different, more business related, but it required making a proper transition to gather the required knowledge in that field. That is why I decided to do the MIM. The program was better suited to my profile than the MBA, due to my fewer than three years working experience as an engineer. In addition, the MIM contains an internship period to gather more working experience during the program.

     

    During my research, I found that Spain actually has some of the top business schools. However, it was clear to me that I wanted to live the experience abroad. ESMT Berlin fulfilled all of these requirements – a top business school located in the stimulating city of Berlin and founded by top companies, providing graduates with an extensive network to leverage for job opportunities.

     

    When I began the program, my objectives were to have a new learning experience, go beyond my limits and capacity, and to move on to a professional career. Today I can say those goals were accomplished. I had the chance to learn from outstanding teachers with experience in the industry. I studied with international students and learned to get the most out of working in diverse groups. And after handling the intense and demanding program, I also developed the confidence to know I can surpass and solve any challenge thrown my way. In addition, although I am not fluent in German, I got a position in Germany doing something that I like and where I believe I can make an impact.

     

    What top tips would you share with business managers and executives who are themselves deciding on MIM or MBA degrees?

    Even though it may sound obvious, the best tip I can give is “think about what you want.” It is tough, and it requires time and being honest with oneself. In my experience, it is hard to figure out even when you dedicate the time, but then you need to think about what you have to do to find it. Try and fail.

     

    Nowadays, it sounds quite appealing to do an MBA or MIM. It seems to be the solution to any period of uncertainty and doubt in one‘s professional career. Everyone talks about it, and it is often seen as the next step to follow when you are a senior executive in your mid-thirties or a recent graduate. However, ask yourself, Is it what you need to grow in your professional career or to reorient it? Is it the professional and personal challenge that you feel like facing at this moment of your life?

    If the answer to these is yes, then, as my grandparents believed, there is no better investment than the investment in education.

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MIM student stories

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