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Calling all IMD Applicants: (2016 Intake) Class of 2017!!

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Guest entry – Additive Manufacturing  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Oct 2016, 01:53
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Guest entry – Additive Manufacturing
Today’s guest entry is by MBA participant, Sean Coyle (British/Irish/Israeli). His team members from the ICP are Elena (French/Moldovian), Charlotte (German), Cindy (Mexican/Guinean) and Fouad (Lebanese/Canadian) with Faculty support by IMD Professor of Strategy, Xavier Gilbert (French).

Our team has been tasked by the ICP client to understand the additive manufacturing industry (a.k.a. 3D printing) and to figure out how to make money out of it.

Additive manufacturing has many advantages – make impossible shapes; and produce small volumes faster and cheaper than making an entire production line. However, the very fact that scale does not confer an advantage is the very reason why it is so difficult to build a sustainable competitive advantage.

The team was invited by the client to their site where they have all the printers and experts to design things to print. Unless you see the printers working and the type of products that they can make, it’s pretty hard to imagine just how disruptive this technology can be. Components with complex internal shapes and moving parts can be created as one whole piece.

It’s incredibly exciting and challenging to see these amazing new technologies and the very real business challenges that stand in the way of really monetising them. To be tasked with trying to look down the line to what the ecosystem looks like when 3D printing is fully integrated into manufacturing and design is daunting but thrilling.

Sean

 

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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What a thrill! The ICP finally started!  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Oct 2016, 03:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: What a thrill! The ICP finally started!
After having been changed so much by our experiences at IMD and after so much education, cramming and grooming… we are almost there! So lets show the world what we can do!

Following a long tradition dating back to the 1980, one of IMD MBA’ program famous highlight is the ICP or “International Consulting Projects”.

Over seven weeks, we are tasked by groups of 5 with helping different clients as consultants!  So no need to say that expectations placed on us are high! Both on the (paying) client’s side and on the faculty side.

We are coached in this endeavor by a faculty who’s expertise relate to our assignment. They support us as project directors, providing methodological insights.

So for whom do we work? We cannot really say of course as our client’s have us work on strategic subjects and are well established international companies. This year, groups  are focusing on  subjects like M&A investigation, new product launch, digitization of business intelligence, marketing and sales digitization, growth strategies, financial risk impact analysis, product introduction decision, business transition study etc.

These projects will take us around the world to meet client’s teams or markets and will also have us being exposed directly to executive and board members of our clients!

So keep checking this page in the coming weeks to know more about where those projects took us and what we learned!

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Non-Exhaustive map of countries traveled to during ICP projects 1980 to 2015
 

 

 

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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ICP – A real consulting experience  [#permalink]

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New post 17 Oct 2016, 04:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: ICP – A real consulting experience
Today’s guest entry is by MBA participant, Thales Crivelli (Brazilian).  His team members from the ICP are Robert (Taiwanese), Avneet (Indian), Alex (Ukrainian) and Takumi(Japanese) with Faculty support by IMD Professor of Strategy & Governance, Paul Strebel (South African/Swiss).

Along my professional career, I have had quite a few interactions with the strategic consulting world. I always worked for the mining sector and was used to hosting or hiring consultants to help us tackle some particular issue. Coming to IMD, I had several opportunities to discuss and understand better about the consultant role. From industry analysis classes and case practices for job search purposes to interactions with alumni, there were plenty of situations where I could learn more about this profession. But in terms of learning, nothing was close to the ICP experience. This is another proof of IMD’s real learning: it is serious, it is international and it is consulting. And my journey so far has been amazing! Definitely one of the best experiences at IMD.

In the middle of the year, when the MBA class was informed about the companies that are sponsoring us this year for the ICP projects, I was very excited with the majority of them. Very interesting companies and challenges. Among all, I had one preference and was fortunate enough to be selected to work for it. It is a chemical company based in Switzerland and the challenge that was presented to us is really meaningful. We actually have the chance to propose a solution that will ultimately positively impact thousands of underserved lives in Sub-Saharan Africa.

To tackle that, I am part of a group of 5 members with very diverse backgrounds. We are from all over the world, from Japan to Brazil. We come from different sectors, like FMCG and Private Equity, and have different expertise, such as sustainability and sales. Right at the first week we found ourselves in the HQ of the client company, where we spent 3 full days interviewing a very diverse set of internal stakeholders – supply chain, technical, sales & commercial, strategy, sustainability, etc. We spent the whole second week doing field research. I went to Zambia with another member of our team and the other colleagues went to Kenya. It was my first time in Africa and I found it awesome. The support we received from the local office of the company was outstanding and I could experience the real life of those people we want to reach and better serve with our project. We gathered not only appropriate insights for our consulting work but also food for thought about this life experience.

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The third week has just finished and another rollercoaster of emotions and deep learning happened. We had the opportunity to present our first deliverable to the client – what we called the eco-system analysis. A couple of high heads of the company were there and the work was highly praised, which tells us we are on the right track. We celebrated and we fought (not physically, though) over the next days, and on Friday of this third week we presented the updated work, which was again very well received by the client.

Along with that, we are getting the internal dynamics of the company and how different departments interact, where the strengths and weakness of them stand and how agendas conflict or build upon each other. Again, from a learning perspective, we may have seen and understood things that those within the company may find a hard time to realize. This is just another consequence of any real consulting job.

For sure, we are working on the real world and the stake is high. There are still 4 weeks to go and we are very committed with every new step of the project. I am confident we can make the most out of it and deliver a result that is above the expectations! Keep following this blog to see how this experience is shaping every one of us. This is IMD!

Thales

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A sneak peek into real consulting!  [#permalink]

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New post 18 Oct 2016, 03:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: A sneak peek into real consulting!
Today’s guest entry is written by Anu (Indian). Her team members from the ICP are Nicolas (French), Revaz (Georgian), Robin (German), Victor (Peruvian). The team is mentored by Professor of Innovation & Strategy, Prof Mikolaj Jan Piskorski (American & Polish)

As we go through a rigorous training program at IMD, we acquire a variety of technical and soft skills. This is often referred to at IMD as ‘Real World Real Learning’. The process of our evolution would be incomplete if the next step wasn’t put in place – the application of the real world learning in a real setting – ‘International Consulting Projects (ICPs)’.

This phase which culminates with the completion of the program is a pressure test when everyone is balancing job search with delivering on client commitment. It is one of the best platforms where even before you take up a real job, you have an opportunity to closely experience one.

Our group is fortunate to have secured a project in the industry we are all passionate about. Rated as among the world’s top reputable companies, it is a matter of prestige to be working with a pioneer in the industry. Moreover, the client product carries an extremely high aspirational value, which left many of our colleagues envious of our photos!

When one of the most traditional and high profile industries is undergoing a disruptive change, you don’t just look at protecting the core business, but also anticipate potential changes that competition might bring in. Keeping this in mind, our project is focused on developing creative ideas on how to address disruptive trends. One of the specific tasks is to focus on understanding the change in customer behavior due to digitalization, and the integration of that intelligence into sales forecasting and pricing.

Sponsored by a Board level member, the project offers a great opportunity to engage with the top management of the company. This also implies that the client entrusts IMD and its candidates with top priority sensitive issues, and means we have high expectations to deliver on.

Working on a complex project becomes fun when you have a mix of a German, a French, a Georgian, a Peruvian, and an Indian, with very different work styles. But then, we have Robin (obviously German) to bring order and organization into the team!

So, while we work to develop and implement solutions, the process also prepares us for social & professional interactions for our respective job searches. With less than eight weeks to graduation, in addition to working hard, let’s enjoy the remaining time of this unique year!

Anu Kateja

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Leadership Lab  [#permalink]

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New post 19 Oct 2016, 12:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Leadership Lab
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My entries became very rare in the last weeks. Our existence in the program is not externally structured any more, but is rather managed by ourselves, who balance ICPs, job search and other things. This part of the program is no less demanding and challenging, but so much different. It is free sailing now. We have all the instruments and resources in our hands, and we move towards our objectives.

I just want to tell about my personal experience with ICP and it doesn’t necessarily reflect opinion even of my teammates. This is, as it has become usual for me at the IMD, “real life, real learning”. You start chasing a goal, you prepare and read on the topic, then, all of a sudden, you discover that your objective has changed, and changed dramatically. What I do in this situation now, is I never draw fast conclusions. I breath… And I see everything from a different perspective: I take initiative and investigate, I dig deeper and try to get internal group alignment. Never think of something as being impossible and clueless.

I am working in a medtech industry, and it has been a second experience for me in this field at the IMD. I am a healthcare professional, but I learn so much about my industry – it is like an ocean of opportunities in business, in professional development, in making change for others. There is still so much unmet need despite all the progress, recently seen in science, technology and quality of life. Looking through the lens of the ICP, I get to know more about my industry and feel reassured that this is MY area.

And, on the other hand, my ICP experience is my last chance to “sign with the wrong hand” and start training new attitudes and skills, that I’ve identified throughout my IMD leadership journey. It is an internal exploration of pushing myself into unknown, but it inspires me to try out more, questioning how far can I go, and how can I improve. Obviously, it is just starting and I give myself a few years ahead to sink all the knowledge and to grow the seeds of my upgraded teamwork style and skills, and leadership. My inner discovery trip is just kicking off.

Till soon,

Aysylu

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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The end is near… but there are still great things to come!  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Oct 2016, 11:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: The end is near… but there are still great things to come!
We are now at a stage of the program where we cannot ignore the imminent end. Deciding on the graduation details, building our yearbook with the Yearbook committee… Yes, the end is near!

One of the things I always liked about this year was to think of the long list of all the good things still to come. This list is now shorter but not less exciting! Our International Consulting Projects are now halfway and we have selected our electives – the very last thing we will do together before graduationImage

I chose to stay away from variations of  Finance, Accounting, etc and really look for topics that either 1 – I am passionate about or 2 – I have no clue of and would like to have an idea.

In my case I chose:



Decision‐Making for Leaders – Analytical x intuitive decisions and the common errors, group decisions, etc

Corporate Governance & Board Dynamics – Roles, power structures, dynamics, etc.

Service Marketing and Management – and how to rethink customer focus.

Non Market Strategies – I know so little about it I can’t even explain – that’s why I took it! Ask me in DecemberImage

Digital Business Transformation – needs no explanation haha that’s a hot topic at the moment!

Truth, Lies, Trust, and the Leader – exploring why we sometimes lie to ourselves and others and how to prevent both telling lies and being the victims of a lie, from a leadership perspective.

Looking forward to it!

If you’ve been following our journey and want to have a chance to experience a day as an IMD MBA Student, you’ll have the chance to attend part of our elective sessions on November 18th (Decision-Making for Leader with Jay Narayanan) and on the 24th (Leveraging Strategic Partnerships with James Henderson)

For that, sign up here – and don’t forget to drop us a message! We love to meet the blog readersImage

Hope to see some of you soon!

Best,

Sílvia

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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A taste of solving one of humanity’s costliest, most difficult problem  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Oct 2016, 06:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: A taste of solving one of humanity’s costliest, most difficult problems
Today’s guest entry is by MBA participant, Vivien Tan (Singaporean). Her team members from the ICP are Felipe (Brazilian/German), Gianpaolo (Italian), Antoine (Belgian) and Mirela (Romanian) with Faculty support by IMD Professors Ralf Boscheck (German) and Goutam Challagalla (American/Indian).

QALY, ICER, EQ5D, PHQ9, BTP, these are some of the many new acronyms that I have heard and grown familiar with throughout the past weeks on the International Consulting Project with a big Pharma company. As I did not have previous healthcare experience, this project brought me the closest I have ever been into this industry. Being able to observe how Pharma is tackling major healthcare trends today, has brought me new excitement and insights!

The project is a nice extension from my previous research for The Promise of Health presentation at IMD’s annual Navigating the Future conference, I have the opportunity to work on a project directly related to value based healthcare, the buzzword in healthcare today. As part of the ICP project, we are working closely with the market access team week after week, understanding how to design a go-to-market strategy for a new compound. Knowing that our work will impact both the top and bottom lines of the product really adds to the pressure!

Beyond this, our team has also had the opportunity to meet and interact with various parts of the organization, from speaking with scientists in R&D, regulatory affairs on how to get the product registered, to strategic marketing that prepares the ground for launch before traditional marketing takes over. These are the traditional business functions of Big Pharma, but we also interacted with the heads of new initiatives who were looking at building up the capabilities of healthcare systems in low income countries and finding new ways of communicating with patients and physicians. But nevertheless, one common thread existed throughout our conversations, which was “we need to do what is in the best interest of our patients” and digitalization featured as a key enabler in this.

Overall, it has been a power-packed 5 weeks thus far and we look forward to squeezing in even more learnings in the remaining time.

Off to prepare our final presentation, till next time!

Signing off,

Vivien Tan

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Photo blog – When IMD gets in the Halloween spirit  [#permalink]

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New post 02 Nov 2016, 03:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Photo blog – When IMD gets in the Halloween spirit
Our American friends brought the Halloween spirit to us for a great night at IMD!

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One of the last and most fun ones!

Fouad

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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IMD in the MBA Regatta  [#permalink]

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New post 03 Nov 2016, 09:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: IMD in the MBA Regatta
 

On the first days of October 2016 two IMD MBA teams – candidates and alumni participated in the Rolex MBA Cup Conference & Regatta 2016. In brief – fun, teamwork, struggle, rivalry, friendship, sea and sun.

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Three years time travel  [#permalink]

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New post 07 Nov 2016, 05:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Three years time travel
Today’s guest entry welcomes back Russian IMD MBA Alumna, Natalia Filchakova, one of our 2013 blog writers.

Time machine on, minus one, minus two, minus three years… stop, arrived. Here we are, in Lausanne, at IMD. It is the final month of my MBA and the graduation is looming in exactly one month. I still feel how November 2013 was special in the way it embodied a month of integrating, filling the gaps, and putting parts of the puzzle together. In the IMD-miraculous way, this sort of happened “by itself”, while I was attending electives, travelling to Hong Kong with a group exploration co-minded classmates, and enjoying a final round of lunches at the IMD restaurant… It was also the time when I started to realize that IMD co-shaped me in a way I didn’t expect or imagine, but I have been feeling grateful for ever since!

Fast forward three years, I live in Geneva area and work at one of the multinationals located here. So far it has been an exciting professional and personal journey. I am in my third role since I joined the company in March 2014. Interestingly enough, all this time the company has been on an ongoing transformational journey itself. Not that I connect the two phenomena… but still, this illustrates that one mantra I learned at IMD, “the only constant in life is change”, holds very true.

Time for a key question. What role does IMD play in my post-MBA life? Well, still a big one. Actually, there is a rare week I don’t feel IMD “presence” in my field. I would not call the school an anchor because it neither drags me down, nor keeps me at the same place. Rather, IMD is a sort of magnetic pole that helps me calibrate where I am and navigate to where I want to be. It also attracts me “back to the base” for an occasional connect and recharge. I don’t think it is a proximity thing, as it would be in my case. It is just that…once you are IMD, you always are. From wherever and whenever you might travel back in your time-machine, if you are a IMD MBA, you would probably say: “That was a pretty life-changing year!”

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Can global business and livelihood improvement for farmers come togeth  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Nov 2016, 03:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Can global business and livelihood improvement for farmers come together?
Today’s guest entry is written by Japanese participant, Maki Suzuki,who is completing her ICP project with teammates: Dustin, Parfait, Carina and Sriram, with Faculty support from IMD Professor of Economics and MBA Program Director, Ralf Boscheck

Average age: 57 years old, average monthly income: 40 USD. This is a typical Filipino farmer. If you were asked by a leading global crop science company to propose a business plan to improve their livelihood, what would you do?

Our five team mates – Dustin, Sriram, Carina, Parfait and myself – were all excited to be engaged in this project full of commitment and passion.

We began our seven week project with an agri-business industry analysis and an overview of smallholder farmers’ socio-economic situation and main challenges throughout the agricultural value chain. Second, we proposed a hypothesis for a business plan after countless hours of research and brainstorming sessions. Lastly, we split into three teams: one in India, one in the Philippines, and one holding down the fort back in Lausanne, to validate our hypothesis through interviews with farmers, retailors, distributors, cooperatives, government officials, international organizations, client representatives, NGOs and start-up companies. I’m writing this blog post from my hotel room on our last night in Manila. Having worked as an international development professional for the past nine years, I have always found that my favourite moments were always in the field learning and collaborating with local people to come up with creative solutions to complex, seemingly unsurmountable problems. And indeed this was one of those times.

One farmer we met had managed to increase his income by expanding his land under management from just a few hectares to over 15 hectares. He participated in valuable farming as a business training provided by our client, and now regularly advocates for his dozens of neighbour farmers to join those trainings. He said that it’s quite tough to convince farmers to adopt new practices, but he strongly believes such trainings will benefit them.

Working on this international consulting project echoed many of the speeches we have heard from CEOs and other top executives of so many international companies during the past 10 months. It made me realize that increasingly companies are explicitly targeting emerging countries and showing true care about the social impact of their businesses. Yes, of course, “the business of business is business”, and so companies’ operations have to be financially sustainable. But my experience at IMD has made me convinced that the boundary between conventional business and social business is rapidly fading.

I would like to express our utmost appreciation to our client, to IMD and to all stakeholders who worked to provide us with this opportunity. We are really looking forward to proposing the final business plan in a few weeks!

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Maki

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Photo blog – When ICPs take us around the world  [#permalink]

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New post 10 Nov 2016, 05:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Photo blog – When ICPs take us around the world
The ICPs are coming to an end, and most of us were lucky enough to travel the world for great projects!

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Read all our guest blog entries about the passionating projects…

Fouad

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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CEO’s, Leadership and ICP’s  [#permalink]

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New post 12 Nov 2016, 15:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: CEO’s, Leadership and ICP’s
After jet-setting around Europe for 7 weeks I have finally gotten time to talk about it. So our ICP with a telecom giant took me and my team from Hungary to Ireland and everywhere in between. ICP’s are a key part of the MBA program and now that it is over, I can see why it is such a brilliant idea to wrap-up our MBA with a real project for a real client solving real problems.

I am delighted to share that our client was very happy with the our work and clearly could see the value-add we brought to the company. All the leadership, finance, accounting, problem-solving and critical thinking lessons learnt throughout the year came in handy to solve the issues at hand.

Immediately, after the ICP’s we headed back to IMD and were greeted with a fantastic gathering of CEO’s of some of the top companies. IMD hosts CEO Rountable for top leaders from across different industries once a year. And this was a great opportunity for us to meet some of these top leaders and learn from them.

I had the chance to hear from Boris Collardi, CEO of Julius Baer. He is clearly an extraordinary executive who climbed up the Banking ladder pretty swiftly and so had some great first hand experiences to share from his journey. His presentation laid out the challenges facing the Wealth Management sector and also his plans to steady Julius Baer to face those challenges well and become a stronger Bank. I must say it is quite extraordinary to hear directly from these people right at the top. Their clarity of vision, simple few point plans and tremendous faith in their abilities and those of their people is quite inspiring to see. It also makes this very real, so much so that we can for the first time begin to believe that some of us can be in those positions and can be fully capable of making similar decisions.

Boris left us with three great lessons for our own careers and I will share them with all of you.

  • “You guys are too young to do a job you don’t like”
  • “You guys are too young to not take really big risks”
  • “Do not over-plan. It is good to have some ideas about your future but do not try to forecast everything. At the same time develop a knack for spotting opportunities as they come”.
 

I am going to reflect on these lessons for sure and I hope you will too.

 

All the best

 

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Photo blog – When one person makes a whole class proud!  [#permalink]

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New post 21 Nov 2016, 04:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Photo blog – When one person makes a whole class proud!
I can safely speak on behalf of my classmates when I say we were all very proud of Andrea, our friend and classmate, who was awarded the MBA prize of the Fondation Vaudoise pour la Formation Bancaire.

The prize was awarded to value her contribution in the classroom, openness of attitude, capacity for overcoming obstacles, contribution to teamwork and development over the year!

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Congratulations Andrea!

Fouad

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RSM MBA private equity competition winners  [#permalink]

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New post 22 Nov 2016, 08:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: RSM MBA private equity competition winners
Today’s guest entry is written by British participant, Sophie Spillard, who competed in the RSM MBA Private Equity competition with teammates Joseph Dunfee, Igor Popkov, Roraj Pradhanaga & Ulrich Van de Woestyne.

Our team, named The Cosmonauts (because we aim for the sky) returned to Lausanne today after a memorable weekend representing IMD at the annual RSM Private Equity competition in Amsterdam. The cherry on top … we won the competition.

RSM deserve a huge thank you for organising a fantastic event, with teams flying in from business schools across the world to both compete and to network! I was so impressed with our team. We laughed throughout the weekend and I’m convinced this positive spirit contributed to our success. Congratulations also to the tough competitors from IESE who were placed second and to IE who came third.

The competition began long before we arrived in Amsterdam. Weeks earlier we had received a case study about a bankrupt portfolio company of a private equity house. We would be representing a strategic PE investor and needed to decide if we would submit a bid for the company on their behalf, and if so, how we would structure our bid.

Friday afternoon began with a conference hosted at ABN AMRO, where guest speakers from PE, politics and finance discussed different aspects of PE deal making. We also used the opportunity to catch up with an IMD alumni who works at ABN AMRO, before the welcome drinks and dinner. We then spent until 3am perfecting our proposal ready, for the presentation on Saturday morning.

As we were presenting to the board of trustees in the bankruptcy process, we strategised over how they might judge the competition. Our bid quantum was quite modest. The previous PE house had stripped out many of the assets and structured a lease back plan. We therefore felt our [modest] proposal was both justified and realistic given our assumed debt capacity. The company comprised of three business units. For the first business, we valued it at a discount to the remaining assets and an additional sum for the brand. For the second business unit, we applied comparable trading and precedent M&A transaction multiples. We proposed not to bid for the third business unit as it was not strategic to our existing portfolio. Our total valuation range was below the existing debt on the balance sheet. We therefore proposed to acquire the company for €1, but also rolled over the debt and assumed all the liabilities. Thereby we felt our offer was fair for the debt holders, providing them with a positive LTV, as well as providing us with the potential for significant upside on implementation of our operational turnaround strategy.

The 15 business schools presented their proposal to a panel and three teams were chosen to go through to the final in the afternoon. Once it was announced we made it successfully through to the second round, we sought feedback from the judges of our first panel. They noted that our strategy was “bullsy” and provided us with some pointers. The final three contenders were given some further information and an hour to adapt proposals and financial models accordingly. We had quantified every part of our turnaround strategy, including the capex required and the potential upside. We tested the sensitivity of the variables so that we were able to present the numbers with confidence.

In our original proposal we had identified a list of partners who were looking to expand into this market and who would acquire the third, non-core business unit. In the second round, we were still confident of the approach, but to provide the trustees greater assurance, we noted that we if this didn’t go through, we would take a bridge-loan and spin off the business across a two year time horizon.

After an eventful weekend in Amsterdam, we returned to Lausanne on Sunday evening at midnight. This did not deter us from returning to class on Monday at 8am as it was our very last finance class of the year with Professor Nuno Fernandes. We had a special bottle of Dutch liquor for him, to thank him for his input in the run up to the competition. He also had a surprise for us, and had arranged for Pedro Wongtschowski, pervious CEO and current president of Ultrapar to come to class as a guest speaker. Nuno has had a knack for bringing cases to life and inviting some of the highest profile speakers to class. Hence, he is an honorary cosmonaught!

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Looking back over the year  [#permalink]

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New post 28 Nov 2016, 07:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Looking back over the year
Today’s guest entry is written by Ukrainian Irina Barabanova, one of our MBA Partners.

“Challenges” was probably the word I heard the most often during the year. New network, new language, new order-oriented Swiss mentality, pause in career… These changes can be quite frustrating, but they can also be turned into an exciting adventure. And, in my opinion, it always depends on us whether to treat these challenges as obstacles or as opportunities.

For our family, the IMD MBA experience was not just a story of my husband’s degree. From the very beginning we understood that this year would be unique for all of us – for me and our daughter as well. Like anthropologists we observed and like a sponge we absorbed the local philosophy and approaches. It is worth to mentioning that we had a lot of ideas to learn from. How people respect the marvellous nature around them, how they organize cooperatives and share, the idea of wastes decreasing, freedom and respect of neighbouring, the way Swiss people bring up their kids.

The invaluable experience our daughter obtained in local school deserves to be separately described. Here I won’t be telling you about the program preparing kids to live in harmony with themselves and society, neither about museums, theatres and ice-skating rinks that they visit during the year. But I want to share with you only one thought: now my daughter easily speaks both English and French. Yes, two languages in one year!  Amazing, isn’t it?

This year was life-changing for me as well. A pause in my career gave me an opportunity to revaluate my own goals and to think about the next steps. Together with my new friend, an MBA Partner, I prepared and took GMAT and TOEFL tests. Thanks to this “vacation” I discovered more fascinating places than I did for the last five years. Brazilian cuisine classes, a Photoshop course, French lessons and coaching sessions – this is just a small portion of the knowledge my new friends shared with me. 30 people from different cultures, but such interesting personalities from the whole world became my friends this year. It is still beyond belief.

To conclude, I would like to share some thoughts and advice for prospective IMD MBA Partners:

1. Travel. You are going to be in the heart of the Europe. France, Italy, Germany – all these countries are in few hours’ accessibility. Switzerland itself is the state of tremendous nature. Enjoy and discover.

2. Use opportunities. These words sound abstract, but there is a wide range of them. Just be open to see. From music concerts to food festivals, from interesting volunteering projects to a long list of conferences and master classes for those who dream about entrepreneurship. From sessions with a psychoanalyst to elective classes offered by IMD to partners.

3. Value. Try to see in this situation a chance to obtain invaluable experience, learn and build a new network. I am sure that this year will be one of the most memorable and valuable in your life.

Irina

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Nine days to count back…  [#permalink]

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New post 30 Nov 2016, 05:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Nine days to count back…
It’s so much happening during the last two weeks of the program: alongside with an intense schedule of electives, guest speaker visits and language courses, we are preparing for the next step in our lives, the first one after the MBA. The other day we discussed with one of my friends that throughout the program the intensity never went down, however, it felt very different at its first half, when the mood was more towards surviving highest educational and other external standards, whereas now we are more focused on satisfying our internal bar on what each of us individually wants to achieve and by which means. In a way, it feels like with the efforts from Pygmalion /  IMD we were given a shape,  and now, we are searching for intellectual, soul and moral fulfilment.

Today I had the last class of an elective on the place of truth, lies and trust in leadership with prof. Jennifer Jordan. It is a very strong experience for me to both understand myself and my personal drivers better, but also to learn more about my classmates, not to mention a fantastic and vibrant personality and style of our professor. I find the whole chain of internal discoveries throughout the program with our leadership stream, teamwork experience, and many classes so much resonating and shaping inside into a much more tangible portrait of who I am and who I am not. I feel very grateful…

Till soon,

Aysylu

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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How I saw the World from a 1m x 0.1m window  [#permalink]

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New post 01 Dec 2016, 07:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: How I saw the World from a 1m x 0.1m window
Today’s guest entry is written by soon-to-be MBA graduate, Muhammad Waqas from Pakistan.

On the sunny afternoon of 25th December 2015, I entered my apartment and looked out of my bedroom window overshadowing the beautiful Lake Leman with snow-covered mountains completing the view. The first thing I noticed was the bald trees which helped me to have a clear view of the lake. The lake looked so mesmerizing due to the sun’s reflection that I ended up looking at the same scenery for the next 15 minutes taking deep breaths to give my tar soaked lungs as much fresh air as I could. Yes, that is what happens to smokers.

Fast forward to 27th November 2016. As I was packing my bags to leave my IMD abode in a fortnight, I looked again at the lake from the same window and recollected how the trees in front of my apartment grew leaves which blocked the view in summer and now the same trees have almost shed their leaves and I again have a clear view of the lake. The lake is still looking as mesmerizing without losing any beauty, the birds are still chirping in harmony, the kids are still playing and the air has the same freshness and romanticism.

But along with that recollection, I entered an internal loop, much like the one I entered in many of our Finance classes, reminding me of the many memories I collected during the year:

  • I recollected how I saw my first snow fall. I had seen snow many times but never a snow fall.
  • I remembered the most common spoken word in Belgian region is “alez”. Only my Belgian tank Ulrich knows how to answer it.
  • I witnessed an Israeli Jewish sharing a room with Palestinian/American Muslim in a Christian Monastery in Italy. For sure there was not much politics involved there.
  • I saw how Japanese can be so loyal to their friends that they can go to any heights to reach a common goal.
  • I witnessed Pakistan getting defeated by their arch rivals twice in a space of 1 month. I still cannot believe how India can defeat the best cricket team in the world!
  • I saw how Brits decided to say farewell to EU and the follow up confusion to stay out completely or partially in EU.
  • I waited for an overwhelming victory of Trump. That made me think, miracles do happen and I probably need to change my name before going to US again.
  • I recounted how the IMD MBA community welcomed 3 partners and twins, and 5 more IMD kids are on the way. Let’s see if we can add any more numbers before the graduation ceremony.
All this brought a smile to my face and before I could take a deep breath again, my 3 year old son asked me “Where are we going?!”

Waqas

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Finish line ahead  [#permalink]

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New post 04 Dec 2016, 15:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Finish line ahead
It is Sunday night in our beautiful and cold Lausanne. The last Sunday night as an IMD MBA candidate. Whoa.

It’s funny how time inevitably flies and especially does it when we are living life fully. The second half of the MBA – as repeatedly warned by the alumni – goes by in a blink. We come from the CEPs and almost immediately are off to the Discovery Trips and then job search and then ICPs (coupled with job search for most) and when you realize it…electives have come and (almost) gone.

So far I’ve been mostly impressed by the electives! New and fantastic professors, deep discussions and the excitement to be back in the classroom with parts of our cohort before we all go onto our new lives.

The goodbyes are fast approaching and we are all trying to spend as much time together as possible. The agenda for next week is super full and exciting:

We have 2 more days of electives and on Wednesday we’ll have our last session and then program closure with the world famous – and very close to our hearts – George Kohlrieser.

Then on Thursday, for the first time, IMD is inviting our partners and family to a gala dinner before the graduation! Some class surprises are being organized and we will see some talent displays from the group – can’t wait.

On Friday we will all gather – hopefully not for the last time – in the main auditorium to finish our unforgettable journey.

My goal is to savour every second of our last week and make the most of it! Will try to leave the emotions for my last blog when I’ll say goodbye to you all and welcome the new bloggers for the 2017 classImage

Wish you all a fantastic week,

Sílvia

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Before we go… give it up for THE band!  [#permalink]

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New post 08 Dec 2016, 09:00
FROM IMD Admissions Blog: Before we go… give it up for THE band!
Last night was our class “informal” celebration after the last day of classes! We had a club just for ourselves and the vibe was incredible.

I remember hearing from my friend Daniel Kodama (Class of 2015) that people had opportunities to make a difference until the last day of the program. That’s exactly what we had the chance to witness last night. Our classmate Felipe Berg initiated a couple of days ago a band with all the musicians in class.

They squeezed time to rehearse over the last days and had their performance last night – IT WAS FANTASTIC!

Luca kicked ass in the Guitar, Thales awed us with amazing harmonic skills, Charlotte made us all sing like there was no tomorrow, Sean showed that his powerful voice in class was just a fraction of what it is singing, James looked like an experienced rockstar, Maki and Takumi on the keyboards and getting the audience even more excited and Mr. Berg showing how it’s done on the drums!

Thanks a lot, guys! It was unforgettable!

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ForumBlogs - GMAT Club’s latest feature blends timely Blog entries with forum discussions. Now GMAT Club Forums incorporate all relevant information from Student, Admissions blogs, Twitter, and other sources in one place. You no longer have to check and follow dozens of blogs, just subscribe to the relevant topics and forums on GMAT club or follow the posters and you will get email notifications when something new is posted. Add your blog to the list! and be featured to over 300,000 unique monthly visitors
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Before we go… give it up for THE band!   [#permalink] 08 Dec 2016, 09:00

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