“After completing the Executive MBA, I had the confidence to make a big leap in my life— I started working in the film industry and now I'm changing both my career and my city. I'm one step closer to my dream of working in Hollywood!”
Marieke Jonker, Netherlands
Customer Success Manager at Share Dimension (Cinema Intelligence)
- Program studied
DEFINE YOUR EXPERIENCE IN THE EXECUTIVE MBA IN ONE WORD
IN WHAT WAYS DO YOU THINK THE EXECUTIVE MBA HAS CHANGED YOUR LIFE, PERSONALLY AND PROFESSIONALLY?
After completing the Executive MBA, I had the confidence to make a big leap in my life— I started working in the film industry and now I’m changing both my career and my city. I’m one step closer to my dream of working in Hollywood! I went from being Head of Content at a cinema chain in The Netherlands, to becoming the Customer Success Manager for a company that provides AI-based software for cinema chains worldwide. In this role, I help other Heads of Content to change their workflow and implement our new, innovative solutions.
Soon, I will move to Los Angeles to become the VP of Operations for North America, and I’ll be financially responsible for the whole region. Even with my previous experience as an entrepreneur, I wouldn’t have dared to put myself out there without having something like an MBA to prove my capabilities. The Executive MBA gave me the confidence I needed.
What I didn’t expect was to gain from the program an international family. When I move to LA, some of my former IE classmates will be there waiting for me. Almost a year after the program, we still meet on a regular basis, both virtually and in person.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO STUDENTS WHO ARE ABOUT TO BEGIN THE PROGRAM?
Know what you’re signing up for, and commit to it. Dedicate time and effort, and I promise you will get the most out of it. It’s not all sunshine and rainbows. Doing the Executive MBA is 1.5 years of very hard work—practicing efficiency at your current job, fighting fatigue, missing out on social events, fighting with your husband over household chores, disappointing your kids for being away and not at their violin recital… Be prepared to spend three full work days or more per week on this program. And finally, be ready to not only work hard, but party hard! True friendship isn’t created in the classroom, but on a Spanish dance floor.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE MEMORY OF THE EXECUTIVE MBA SO FAR?
In the Netherlands, we celebrate Sinterklaas (the Dutch version of Santa Claus) on December 5th. I explained to my group in the EMBA that I couldn’t join our call because I was reading poems and unwrapping gifts with my family. On the night of December 5th, I received an alarming message: I really needed to join the call NOW. I joined, only to find the smiling faces of my group members as they read me a lovely poem they wrote for me. Of course, my family greeted my classmates, and I teared up as we had a beautiful global experience of a Dutch tradition. You don’t do the Executive MBA alone. You do it together!
WHAT IS NETWORKING LIKE IN THE EXECUTIVE MBA?
Eating croquetas, drinking gin and tonics, and dancing at Medias Puri! All jokes aside, I think IE Business School does a great job organizing networking activities that encourage unexpected connections. Also, the work groups for projects rotate, so you get to know lots of your classmates very well. IE Business School and (if you’re lucky) some great class reps will make networking for your future career a very pleasant experience.