“The Global Executive MBA offers a unique opportunity to expand your network and form relationships with people who have extremely diverse personal and professional backgrounds.”

Björgvin, Iceland

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Björgvin Gestsson

About me

Born and raised in Iceland, I worked as a fisherman for many years and later completed a Bachelor of Science at the Faculty of Business Administration and Natural Resources. I have a wonderful wife, five kids and a cat – we love to golf, ski and go fly fishing. Throughout my studies and my career, I have lived in multiple countries and on three different continents where I’ve learned to do my best to embrace diversity in terms of different backgrounds, genders, religions, cultures and lifestyles. I spent 20 years working in administration within the global seafood sector in roles related to catch, processing, farming and marketing. I also created two successful startups within the industry. Recently, I made a career switch by teaming up with a finance company in Iceland to focus on consulting and the funding of activities related to natural resources.
WHO

Björgvin Gestsson, Iceland

POSITION

Corporate Finance Specialist at Iceland Securities ltd (Islensk Verdbref)

Program studied

Global Executive MBA

DEFINE YOUR EXPERIENCE IN THE GLOBAL EXECUTIVE MBA USING ONE WORD

Thrilling.

HOW HAS THE GLOBAL EXECUTIVE MBA CHANGED YOUR LIFE, PROFESSIONALLY AND PERSONALLY?

The Global Executive MBA has been a real challenge. The courses and the program overall are very demanding, but through discipline and good teamwork with your peers, this challenge can absolutely be overcome. Practical courses such as Finance, Strategy, Marketing and Cost Accounting have an immediate professional impact. Regarding my personal enhancement in the long term, the leadership courses and IE’s overall focus on equality and the stakeholder’s view were very important.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO STUDENTS WHO ARE ABOUT TO BEGIN THE PROGRAM?

Don’t do it unless you are truly motivated to dedicate time and resources into higher learning and networking. You should have realistic expectations about maintaining balance between the program, family, friends and your current job. When you start, create routines that work for you and others. Make any necessary adjustments as you go, but recognize the importance of maintaining the pace.

WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE MEMORY OF THE GLOBAL EXECUTIVE MBA SO FAR?

So far, the residential weeks have been very exciting. Getting to know my classmates and hearing their stories, interacting with the professors, and experiencing new destinations have been my favorite things.

WHAT IS NETWORKING LIKE IN THE GLOBAL EXECUTIVE MBA?

The Global Executive MBA offers a unique opportunity to expand your network and form relationships with people who have extremely diverse personal and professional backgrounds. Everyone can play this card as they wish, but exploiting this opportunity should be every participant’s priority.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE IE’S GLOBAL EXECUTIVE MBA?

For me, maintaining my company and position was important, as was residing in Iceland while studying. The blended program offered in the Global Executive MBA at IE Business School was a good fit for me. The “Global Executive” factor was important because, with 20 years of professional experience, I wanted to attend a program alongside people that have diverse, substantial experience in both their professional and personal lives.

WHAT ARE THE RESIDENTIAL WEEKS LIKE? WHAT IS THE ONLINE PERIOD LIKE?

As I mentioned before, everyone has to take advantage of the residential weeks, which are absolutely the thing to look forward to. The online period varies as you’re rarely actually working alone. You will also favor some courses over others, and the pace can vary between weeks. However, the communication factor is well-managed as there were posting requirements that ensured participation from every student. There is also a high degree of flexibility as you can choose when you attend the virtual class.