EDHEC Business School, Lille-Nice
|Areas of Study||
|Joint Degree Offered||No|
|GMAT Score||GMAT Accepted|
|Tuition & Fees||Total Program, January: EUR 38.000
Total Program, September: EUR 40.500
|Financial Aid Availability||Financial aid available, contact school for more information|
|Start Dates &
|Work Experience||Average: 8 Years|
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THE MBA FILLS A KNOWLEDGE GAP FOR SCIENTISTS
Natural scientists are in demand not only in research, but also in business. But often they still lack the necessary business skills for a management post. The solution: an MBA. Molecular biologist David del Ālamo on his MBA at the German Graduate School of Management and Law (GGS).
Why did you decide to do a part-time MBA?
When I started working for the European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO), I felt as a scientist that I had very specialized skills that I was only able to expand slowly. The MBA prepares me for the business and management world and teaches me completely new skills. That's important to me. Not only from a personal development perspective, but because the degree will also significantly increase my value on the job market. That was one of the reasons why I decided to study for an MBA. A part-time course and the flexibility that GGS offers meet my needs exactly, because I can arrange it with my full-time position.
You are currently a science editor at the EMBO Journal and
already have your doctorate in biology. Science graduates usually do their
doctorates to advance their academic careers. Why did you also decide to
study for an MBA?
As you mentioned correctly, natural scientists do not normally promote their academic careers outside of their science - although that has changed in the past ten to 20 years. To put it in a nutshell: the transition from an academic to a business-oriented perspective requires further training and knowledge that a scientist usually does not have.
The GGS MBA program helps me to close this gap - which
is all the more important to me now that I am in a management
position. Because in addition to my work as a science editor, I now also
work as a manager for the EMBO Fellowship Program. I am sure that my MBA was
a reason why I was offered this new position.
When I started with the MBA, I was still an editor and didn't need the knowledge from my studies for my daily tasks. But I have to admit that my perspective on organizing teams, setting up processes or dealing with conflicts has changed significantly - the more I learned about these areas. My employer did not suggest the MBA program to me, but he supports me in this project and I am already profiting from my studies in my new role as manager.
And how did you find out about the MBA program at GGS? And why
did you choose this course of study instead of another?
One of my colleagues in the EMBO Journal had already completed the same MBA program and had a very positive opinion of it. Incidentally, he is now very successful in a managerial position at another company.
I also had a few personal requirements, mainly with regard to the compatibility of my studies with my job and the international orientation: For me it was crucial that the MBA is held only in English and is internationally recognized. Another criterion was the small number of participants per course, which promotes an intensive exchange.
What are your career plans after completing the MBA program? What
are your hopes for your future?
My short and medium-term plan is to continue to lead the EMBO fellowship program. Due to the special nature of EMBO as an international non-profit organization, employment contracts are generally limited to nine years. This means that I have to find another job relatively soon. I would like to take advantage of my training at GGS and my professional experience at EMBO to continue working in a leadership position, most likely in an area similar to science administration or politics. But it is still too early to be able to say anything concrete
Why is it worth doing an MBA?
You learn to perceive things, to recognize them. There are no magic weapons, no tricks, no magical or general solution to a problem in the work environment. But you can develop an awareness of it. The MBA gives me the knowledge base to anticipate potential problems and to be able to prevent them to a certain extent. This brings me to two other important points that you learn through an MBA: strategic thinking and leadership skills.
This also includes thoughts about the future: about the orientation and strategy of the company, but also - on another level - about your own professional and personal development. In other words, to determine where you want to go and how to get there. Everyone, regardless of their position, can benefit from such a mindset.
You started studying at GGS last year. What was your experience
It is a slow but steady process. Organizations can be analyzed from many different perspectives: from the human side, which deals with feelings and personal dynamics, to a more concrete side of numbers and finances. In the beginning it is difficult to process and integrate all the information, but little by little you start to think differently about things and how you deal with them in your own organization. This is especially important on the human level. When I make decisions or have to deal with conflicts, I try to get to the bottom of things beforehand, and my studies increasingly support me.
What new insights have you gained about this, both in relation to your work and to yourself?
In the end, every organization is a human organization and the issues you
deal with are human issues. I learned one thing: It doesn't matter how good
your idea is if you can't motivate and lead people to make it happen.
The rest are organization, processes and management. These topics are important and make up a large part of the training of an MBA student - but for me they are secondary to the individual, who has to bring everything together in practice and implement it.