Why MBA: EMLYON Business School
Laurent Berro finished the MBA at EMLYON Business School in France this year.
Two consultancy projects were a program highlight for the monetary policy analyst at Banque de France, the French central bank: one on the expansion of Amaris, a consulting firm based in Switzerland; the other at France 24, the Paris-based international news organization.
He also greatly valued the diversity of EMLYON’s intimate cohort, and the global alumni network that has opened up career connections.
Previously, Laurent was a consultant at Consumers International, a non-profit federation of consumer rights groups, and a UK-registered charity. Before that he worked as a trader at Credit Agricole, the French investment bank.
His career also includes posts in securities services at Société Générale, another leading French bank, and as a salesman for AXA, the insurance group, focused on the Middle Eastern market.
What makes EMLYON Business School unique?
During my first day at EMLYON, I had the chance to participate and have an impact. As we are a small class — around 35 students — you get the chance to ask all your questions, and you get the chance to have all your questions answered.
I was surprised by the strength of EMLYON’s training in entrepreneurship, from idea generation to the launch of your own company.
Did your first impressions match your expectations?
Of course. I was even more impressed than my expectations. Indeed, I didn’t know that the cohort was so diverse. We had so many different nationalities.
I was also positively surprised by the intensity of the program. You learn so much in such a short period. One year goes by very quickly.
What impact do you expect the MBA have on your career?
The MBA taught me how to work in teams and that is a very valuable asset for my future career. This will definitely have an impact on my future jobs.
I also learned how to develop strategy and developed analytical and consulting skills, which will definitely help me in future.
During the ELP project, run during the MBA, I established a team of three people and we gave consulting services to Amaris, a growing consultancy firm based in Geneva, by developing an overseas office expansion strategy for them.
This was a tremendous experience that helped me and my fellow classmates to more easily get into consulting. I’ve been living in London for six months now and my MBA from EMLYON opened many doors and gave me the opportunity to interview — dozens of times — with major multinationals and consulting firms.
What tips do you have for career searching post-MBA?
Well, the best way to get an interview is to network. The broad alumni network of EMLYON will allow you to meet with exceptional people all around the world. They will be helpful in getting you an interview.
I would recommend to an EMLYON candidate to research about the global strategy of the firm they are interviewing with. Knowing the firm’s strategy is extremely important.
I would also recommend they look at the deals and partnerships they have done recently. How did this new partnership strengthen the company, for instance? That’s an important question.
How can applicants impress the EMLYON admissions team?
To impress an admissions committee, it is important to be prepared for the interview. If it’s a Skype interview, choose a calm and nice place to be in. Try to communicate well and give concise responses about your background. The GMAT is only part of the application.