Why MBA: Grenoble École de Management — Europe

State manager for Australia values MBA program in southeastern France

Martin Amstalden is an MBA candidate at Grenoble École de Management, a top business school in the Rhône-Alpes region of southeastern France, which sits at the foot of mountains.

The former process management student has spent much of his career at Hilti, a leading construction company that operates in 120 countries, most recently as state manager in Australia. Other Hilti posts include business area manager for northern Europe and Scandinavia, and product marketing manager for the Swiss market.

Previously, he worked as an international account manager for an affiliated company of India’s TATA Motors, owner of the Jaguar Land Rover brand.

That followed a four-month stint as a project manager at a chemical engineering plant in Switzerland.

What makes Grenoble École de Management (GEM) unique?

The GEM MBA program has very practical management teaching methods for a selected group of highly motivated and driven people.

The program is divided into three parts, consisting of Core Courses, a Specialization and a Final Management Project. It exhibits signs of excellence not only through its well-established brand but also through its prestige triple accreditation.

And as another uniqueness of this MBA program, it has been successful in attracting individuals from diverse professional backgrounds, which is of unquestionable importance nowadays.

What are your three key takeaways from the MBA so far?

GEM has fully recognized the important market needs and expectations of future leaders. The business school not only provides a strong platform for candidates to advance their career, but also to further enrich people’s intellectual curiosity.

One specific way the MBA is evolving this is by teaching problem-solving methods, which are practiced and experienced by students in several case studies.

In addition, the ability to connect different aspects of business and to think in a holistic way is another vital skill-set necessary in the fast-paced business world. Candidates receive the opportunity to further develop those dimensions during the MBA program.

And lastly, I would say the application of courage to deal with any uncertainty and to convert such situations into driving forces for success, rather than letting them have a negative impact.

What impact do you expect the MBA to have on your career?

I have been considering an MBA program for the past two years. Lately, I realized that I came to a point in my career where I’d like to take my profession to the next level.

Also, I was inspired by a couple of key people around me, which prompted me to start looking into MBA programs.

I intend to gain a higher understanding of topics outside the scope of my current expertise. In addition, I seek an opportunity to sharpen and enhance my present abilities to gain further business knowledge and to get exposure to different business tools and practices.

I am convinced the GEM MBA program is a great added value, and matches my expectations.

What tips do you have for impressing the admissions committee?

As in every MBA program, to possess and show clear future goals, and knowing how the selected MBA program is going to support this vision, is of major importance for GEM’s admission committee.

Furthermore, in addition to bringing along excellent written and oral communication skills, an interesting professional career path and a well-rounded inspiring personality, [is important].

A way to impress the admissions committee is demonstrating a high level of openness to cultural diversity, and having an open mind.

What would you do if you were dean for a day?

I would use half of the day to attend an exciting MBA lecture in order to experience the prodigious energy levels from the students and professors.

Although the program and business school are already working very [well] professionally, I would invest in networking and build further bridges with relevant organizations.

I would also communicate and share more through digital channels like social media the various stimulating academic and professional contributions arising from GEM. 

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