Our students are the core of the MaastrichtMBA programme. Students with a broad diversity on nationality, age and even professional background. The insights and thoughts of our MBA students describe the true experience of MaastrichtMBA. This time we talked with our French student Jérôme Dierickx. He works as Deputy Director at Fonds du Logement, a public company operating in social housing and real estate. Jérôme joined our Executive MBA in February 2020.
It took me a bit over 10 years to decide myself for an MBA. It has always been a hidden quest for me, but it took a (really) long time for convincing myself. I was certainly overintellectualising the whole thing. One day, all stars aligned themselves (family, work, finance) and it became evident it was the right time to dive in. The deep motivations: getting outside of my comfort zone, enriching my experiences, “despecialising” myself from my finance labelling and overall raising my academic level.
I am not looking after some specific skills per say except maybe developing my leadership skills. However, this is a rather broad concept which certainly takes a lifetime of self-development. I am looking for raising my overall technicity of the business practice and refreshing myself before entering the second half of my professional life.
With my finance and accounting habits, I earlier started with a thoroughly structured and matrix like selection process, but there was always one aspect of the selected programs that was not fitting my requirements. In the end, it became evident to me that I rather had to go with what my spirit and soul were telling me.
So why the MaastrichtMBA? I early had a welcoming and easygoing contact with the team. Most of my important criteria were also met: within 2 hours from home, good alternative within my budget, reputable school, well balanced format for family vs. professional life obligations. The city of Maastricht is also very appealing to me.
Sustainability is a growing concern for all companies and will be unavoidable for any strategist in the near future. This is also something that touches my own core values: ie. a growing concern for me on which I want to have a positive impact in my professional and private sphere. Responsible leadership comes in parallel to sustainability and the two can hardly be dissociated. It comes with how to be a good humanist and leading genuinely and intelligently: any aspiring leader is required to include this in his/her daily best practices.
My goal is to move into a CEO/MD role by my next rotation and ultimately why not creating my own venture / business. I am expecting that the program will better equip myself for this purpose: from a personal standpoint by becoming a better person, increasing my professional network and becoming better skilled at the overall practice of business.
Being surrounded by so many high-level professionals (ie. my fellow students) is incredibly enriching and prompts each of us at raising the bar at many professional and personal levels.
Without hesitation the participants to the program: I enjoy meeting the very diverse profiles and everyone sharing their own experiences. It is truly amazing to see how people progressively open up and the positive group dynamics that are building over time. Two other things that I appreciated so far: going back to school (interesting feeling after having left school 20 years ago) and the intriguing work I initiated on myself with deepening my knowledge of my inner personality.
This was a true blast of fresh air and a real relief to resource myself socially and mentally after such a dark period. Although the lockdown was a no brainer from a sanitary standpoint, the lack of freedom was a real pain for me.
I have read many articles and books on the whole benefits of an MBA and I have long been quite skeptical: what is the right level of investment, what will be the true ROI, how will I increase my salary, what promotions should I expect? In the end, I do not think this is where the essence of an executive MBA stands and especially this program. We all have all appropriated ourselves the journey differently according to our own lives, preferences, and expectations and I personally enjoy every bit of it.
Bottom line: don’t overthink if you feel this program is right for you and remember that as Lewis Carrol said “In the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take, the relationships we were afraid to have, and the decisions we waited too long to make.”