This week, MBA candidate Alissa Warne (@alissa2112) showed us a day in the life at IE Business School. Followers on Instagram got to join early morning group project meetings, attend some classes and follow along for a meeting with Sephora and more as Alissa and her team launch IE’s Inaugural Global Innovation Challenge. Her day is pretty non-stop but we get some great Q&A (in the video and continuing in the write-up below!). Don’t miss Alissa’s #MBAchicTakeover if you’re interested in pursuing your MBA or if you’re interested in tech, strategy or innovation! You might remember Alissa from her guest post on MBA networking – stay tuned for more from Alissa… we can’t wait to see what she does next!
Here are some of your questions Alissa answered (check these out after watching!) – be sure to reach out here or connect with her if you have more questions about MBA life at IE Business School and want to learn more!
What’s the best class/ most rewarding experience of your time in business school?
Since I have a marketing background, the marketing classes naturally stood out to me and my professor, Ana, always challenged us to think differently about things as everyday as shampoo or cream cheese. I also really LOVED Strategy, as well as Managing Big Data – all key skills needed for the modern workplace!
How did you know it was the right time for your MBA?
Plenty of senior managers in my old company had MBAs and always encouraged me to get one if I wanted to progress into an executive position. I also wanted to move into a product management role eventually and the MBA seemed like a good way to pivot my career. The best decision!
Where are/did you intern?
IE is a one-year program so I didn’t have time to intern, but I spent 6 weeks in Startup Lab launching my own business, which was great.
How did you choose IE for your school? What should applicants consider in a global program?
I knew I wanted to go into tech, work alongside diverse nationalities and spend my year abroad in a sunny, beautiful location. IE is known for these 3 things as well as for entrepreneurship, and that’s why I chose this program. IE also tends to attract unconventional thinkers that manifests itself in course subjects, on campus activities and startup ideas.
Not to pry but did you take on a lot of debt to pursue your MBA? Is your company helping?
I borrowed from my parents (& my savings). The biggest thing I underestimated was the cost of living in Europe, particularly the travel and eating out!
Can you get into tech if you don’t have a tech background?
Absolutely! But you really have to get immersed in the tech world once you decide this field is for you. Join the tech club, volunteer for tech projects in the MBA and just talk to as many people as you can about the challenges of getting into this industry. Also, doing a few online courses in Python, SQL or R doesn’t hurt.
Is it hard to network for jobs in the US if you get your MBA abroad?
I’m not from the US, but for Australians I would assume it is similar. It’s a little harder as all the MBA networking will be focused on the region you’re in (for example, Spain & Europe for me). It’s not impossible to get a good job after you’re done with the MBA but you might just find yourself taking Skype calls in the middle of the night!
For more information on Alissa and her time at IE, check out her P&Q profile here.
Thanks so much to Alissa for hosting our latest #MBAchicTakeover and for giving us such a great look at a day in the life at IE Business School!
Interested in hosting a takeover, or writing a guest post for MBAchic? Head here when you’re ready and we can get the ball rolling.
Also make sure you subscribe to get this and more in The Weekly Chic from MBAchic.