Copenhagen MBA Is The Gateway To Stellar Careers In Denmark

Majority of 2014 cohort found roles in Denmark after their MBA

An MBA from Copenhagen Business School is the gateway to stellar careers in Denmark.

Students from around the world are flocking to the school’s MBA program and, in 2014, 80% of the cohort found roles in Denmark after their MBA, a trend encouraged by a dedicated careers manager.

“We work with our students to help them identify their career goals and achieve their ambitions,” says Claire Hewitson, manager of Copenhagen’s personalized MBA careers service, which organizes company visits and individual coaching sessions, as well as access to the largest MBA alumni network in Scandinavia.

When approaching the final leg of their MBA journey, students are matched up with a career mentor. The popular initiative started last year.

“The mentoring program introduces them to the Danish jobs market and gives them a chance to discuss what they would like to do,” says Mireia Fontarnau Vilaró, a mentor to one of last year’s students, Ambarish Iyengar, and herself a Copenhagen MBA alumnus. Most MBA students come from abroad, she says.

Determined to transition from an engineering background into finance, Ambarish relocated from India to attend CBS.

With Mireia’s guidance, he gained knowledge of the local industry and landed a job working as a business controller for Danish wireless headset manufacturer Jabra in Copenhagen.

“In the beginning, I was all over the place,” he says. “[Mireia] brought the necessary structure to my thinking process and helped me to understand how I could add value to an organization.”

Ambarish was attracted to Copenhagen by the number of multinational firms — among them Carlsberg Group and Maersk Oil — headquartered there. Coming from India, he positions himself as a bridge to developing markets and urges others to do the same.

“It’s a win-win situation,” he says. “They want global talent, and we have international experience.”

Mireia was also attracted by the chance to work on a global scale when she swapped Spain for Denmark almost a decade ago.

“Despite being in a small country, most of the companies in Denmark are very international,” she says, “so you actually get to travel and experience a lot of different cultures.”

Once MBA students arrive in Denmark, they are likely to stay. Flat hierarchies and a strong emphasis on work-life balance make Danish working culture particularly appealing.

Mireia, who was promoted to business development manager at global engineering firm FLSmidth after her MBA, is currently on maternity leave but finds juggling family and career in Denmark easy.

“There’s an understanding that employees will deliver better results if you give them that freedom to spend time with their family,” she says.

While Ambarish has found the more relaxed Danish working style as something of a culture shock, he is delighted by the opportunities that it presents.

“In Indian companies, the CEO is out of reach. Here you can meet him next to the coffee machine and have a chat!” he laughs.

While Ambarish put in around 60 hours, six days a week in India, in Denmark he works closer to 40. “You get opportunities in your personal life that I missed out on in India,” he says. “I did my first half-marathon in Copenhagen last year and I’ve just started preparing for this year’s.”

While the decision to relocate was not easy, Ambarish is confident that it was the right one.

“I would definitely recommend graduates stay in Denmark,” he says. “I plan to stay here for a while.”

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