Times of crisis call for different behaviors. One recent trend has been the increase in applications to top business schools such as IE, be it for the traditional MBA programs or for the new kids on the market – the Master in International Management programs. This article chronicles the stories of 8 recent grads (graduated December 2009) of IE’s Master in International Management. We hope to continue following their stories in future releases, along with those of other graduates who unfortunately we couldn’t include here due to limited space.

Marcela Martinez from Honduras landed a much coveted 2 year training and leadership graduate program (Canter Roche) at Roche, the world’s largest biotech company and global market leader for in-vitro diagnostics, and cancer and transplantation drugs. She learned of the opportunity through IE’s Career Services Department and managed to get through the grueling selection process that resulted in her Madrid placement. The purpose of the program is to train future leaders of Roche like Marcela, using an intensive rotation system designed to achieve the most competent future leadership possible for Roche.

Ahmet Giray (Turkey) is currently working in Electrolux’s sales system support department (Belgium). He is working on the roll-out of the European Sales System, a highly innovative approach to sales. Here he is responsible for data analysis, key performance indicator measurements, reporting, and communications. According to Ahmet, “My education at IE helped me get to grips with the job quite fast; hence I was able to contribute to the European sales program from day one. Before studying at IE, I had no clue about things like financial statements, channel management, management control, etc… Thanks to my studies at IE, from the first week at Electrolux I was able to work on these tasks as if I had a vast experience in them.”

Borja Saki (Spain) is presently working at Online Shopping Club Europe (4members brand) in Madrid, which is a start up owned by an IE alumnus. Here he contributes to 4member’s digital marketing plan and its implementation. The primary objective is to create awareness and capture new users. Borja also proposes communication strategies to corporate clients, personalizing the 4members services to meet specific clients’ needs. Although Borja would later like to expand his knowledge in a larger multinational company, he is happy with the learning experience afforded to him by Online Shopping Club Europe. “Don’t underestimate the learning opportunities in a new startup or a small company! It might be chaotic at times, communication may be fuzzy, but the wide range of roles involved will give you a chance to experience a lot of different functions and tasks that might not be available in a large company, and will give you a real feel for what makes a company tick. Dynamic small firms, like 4members, will definitely improve your flexibility, efficiency, and communication at work.”

Maria Virginia Rios (Venezuela) liked IE so much that she decided to continue at IE after graduation, but in a working role. She is currently Community Manager for IE Communities (one of IE’s online platforms), and she works on the department’s marketing and outreach strategies.

Daniel Spechar (Bolivia) is currently working at Corporacion Andina de Fomento (CAF) after learning of the opportunity from IE’s Career Service Department. CAF is a multilateral financial institution that mobilizes resources from international markets to Latin America. It provides multiple banking services to both public and private clients of its shareholder countries, being committed to sustainable development and regional integration. Daniel is officially based in Caracas, however he is living in Quito at the moment because of a 3-month project in the corporate and public sector. He enjoys the great pay, job growth opportunities, networking, and exposure.

Juan Carlos Polanco (Colombia) decided to launch a company with his brother while he searches for a full time position (he likes a challenge!). The start-up is in the dental supplies sector (his brother is a dentist) and he is aiming for a full-time position in companies that include Microsoft, Google, Nestle, and Coca Cola. He’s happy about the skills he gained last year at IE and is already applying them in his home country of Colombia.

Natalie Jadalla-Maria (Dominican Republic) is another MIM graduate that decided to launch her own business. She never seriously considered any corporate jobs and IE’s focus on entrepreneurship was one of the main factors that resulted in her applying to IE. Along with her father (owner of KAJAMA Inversiones), they are on the verge of creating a new venture. They are currently researching the market and crunching numbers to evaluate feasibility. In order to maintain competitive advantage, I can’t reveal the details of the venture here. Of IE, Natalie says, “You truly learn to interact with people from different mindsets, cultures, and backgrounds. Also, you learn how to manage time and prioritize tasks because of the gigantic work load and minimal time in which to do it… However, the most important part of the IE experience was the people I met. Making friends that live all around the world is not only pleasant but can also provide interesting business opportunities in the future.”

Etienne Bismut (France) is currently working as a business development engineer at a company called MeteoLogica in Madrid. The company sells probabilistic weather forecasts and also translates them into operational data for energy sector companies. Etienne’s role consists of attracting new clients, selling them MeteoLogica’s solutions and following up on these accounts. The position requires an extensive technical understanding of the product in order to comprehend the models and needs of the client. However, it also calls for good commercial and marketing skills. Etienne enjoys the sector, which is ever changing. According to Etienne, IE’s training has played a useful role, “IE trains you to be efficient at what you’re doing and gives you that extra confidence to make excellent presentations.” He is quite happy in his new position, considering it the perfect stepping stone for his career.

Andrey Lukyanov (Russia) decided after graduation to take his passion for golf to the next level. No, he is not planning in competing in the PGA Tour… instead he recently launched a company (Luk Enterprise) that distributes golf clothing and items in the Iberian peninsula. It is still very early to measure its success (less than two months); however, knowing Andrey’s competitive nature, he is sure to give his competitors a run for their money.

We will continue to post more news about IE’s Master in International Management and its graduates. What is striking is not only how these students secured places in different types of industries and sectors, but also their many different nationalities and current geographic locations. Talk about a global world! It just goes to show that with the right tools you can do anything…

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