Luis Velasco used his MBA degree to land a business development role at Infosys, the consulting, technology and outsourcing solutions giant, in London.
He graduated from Spain’s IESE Business School earlier this year, after a four-month exchange to the Kellogg School of Management in the US.
Before business school he worked as a senior consultant at Oracle Corporation, the computer technology company, where he rose through the ranks from an initial internship program.
Despite working for a technology group – and despite the growth in demand for tech and digital services – he does not see this as the biggest growth area in consulting. But he believes that failing to be technology-literate will put you automatically out of the jobs market.
Why did you decide to leave Oracle Corporation and begin an MBA program?
Simply put, I wanted to move from solving technical problems to solving business problems, with the help of technology. So, a few years ago I conducted a self-assessment and concluded that I did have deep technical knowledge, but my business skills were not sharp enough to successfully tackle real world business problems.
That insight led me to consider gaining further education, and an MBA at a top [business] school would definitely provide me with a well-rounded experience [needed] to achieve such goals.
What was your experience like at IESE in Spain?
The best word to describe the IESE MBA experience is “transformative”. IESE has not only helped me in accomplishing my business knowledge goals, but also provided me with a platform to reflect and gain invaluable leadership skills, discover the critical importance of human relations in business, and of course [the chance to] make long-life friends. I had a blast.
Do you value your exchange to the Kellogg School of Management?
Absolutely. Participating in the exchange program has been the icing on the cake.
It was refreshing to have a glimpse of a different educational approach, as Kellogg didn’t use the case method as much as IESE does.
Finally, I think that going on [an] exchange is the perfect way to expand your network in a new geography. [But] being Spanish, I must admit that the Midwest weather last winter was a bit too crazy – hitting minus 27C.
You have been hired by Infosys but had a summer MBA internship first. Did that aid your application?
At Infosys there is not a formal process for converting summer internships into full-time offers, but as one can imagine having done the internship was a big plus for securing the offer.
How helpful was the MBA in securing a full-time job at Infosys?
It has been instrumental. The business development executive program I am taking part of at Infosys only hires MBAs from top business schools worldwide. The source of the offer was directly from career services [at IESE].
Have you been able to utilize your business school network?
Not as of now, as I have been in my new role for only a couple of months. I am at the sales organization and some of the decision-makers in target organizations are IESE alumni, so I am confident that having that common background will help me in securing meetings and closing deals.
There has been an increase in demand for digital and technology consulting services. Is this the next big growth area in consulting?
I don’t think so – at least the way we understand technology consulting today.
As technology gets more standardized and less complex, the need for bread and butter technology consulting will actually decrease, not to mention the huge impact of the cloud shift on the traditional IT application development and maintenance services.
Where I think the opportunity resides is in helping customers to move the technology focus from a cost reduction capability to a value generating one. Customers failing to understand that will soon be immersed in a world full of digital disruptions seriously threating the core of their business.
Is there a need for all managers to be tech-savvy, regardless of the sector they work in?
We live in a technology enabled world. The productivity of almost any job you can think of has been dramatically improved with the help of technology during the last 30 years, and many new jobs have been created. This trend is only accelerating.
Not being technology-literate will put you automatically out of the job market. Having said that, I think the millennial generation is already tech-savvy enough to cope with the technology changes ahead.