Jan 232013

Yannick Kpodar final graduation speech

It is with great pleasure that I can say that my year at EADA was an exceptional one. I have done an undergraduate degree in International Business at a leading school in the UK and was nowhere near foreign to business studies. However I have learned such a great deal from this Master program and would gladly recommend it to anyone.

The International Master in Management at EADA is built around Harvard Business School’s case study teaching system designed to develop future leading business professionals. The entire year was built around case studies, group work, presentations, reports, and projects along with trips to Colbato once a trimester as a professional development module.

Looking back at my year, I think what I enjoyed so much about the program itself was all the case studies we had to read because each case study was a different situation, a different problem to identify and solve, and a different set of learning outcomes to take from it. Additionally, these case studies we read were real examples and real decisions that leading companies today have made to be where they are today. We were able to understand the situation, see the thought process, and understand why and how they have done what they had to do. Cases ranged from a variety of industries and we got a very good understanding of managerial decision-making in any business context.

The main aim of the International Master in Management is to simulate how the real business world functions. In today’s world, countries have grown to be interdependent. Globalization for example has made it possible for a business to buy computer parts in one country, assemble the computer in another country, and have the final product sold in a third. This means that different people, and cultures have to merge together to work. And we have learned this at EADA. 90% of the students were from different countries with different ways of working and doing things, different interpretations of time and what hard work means. It was an eye-opening experience and although several teams had to deal with issues of some individual’s lack of motivation to work hard, personal differences, different working habits, or clashing cultures, fortunately our team was entirely different.

The Dream Team, Philipp Herz, Iñigo Muñoz, Vasilina Sokolova & Yannick Kpodar

My team was composed of Philipp Herz from Germany who used to be captain and a professional football player who had also shadowed his family’s 40-year old business, Vasilina Sokolova from Russia who is a phenomenal business professional and has worked her way up to Deputy of HR Director of a leading IT company, Iñigo Munoz Bilbao from Spain who was entrepreneurial and was managing and running his own business while he was studying, Marissa Canto from Panama who had worked with Sony for a number of years and is an expert in her field, and myself from the US who had worked in the UK for several years in project management and also set up my own business there. We were a team of leaders and our particular challenge lied in how to come together, and learning how to lead leaders and also how to be lead in order to be a good team player. I am proud of my team and we worked really hard to win the award for the best Management Group Project. The level of all the teams was high and the competition was really an exciting one.

Without any hesitation I would like to say that my favorite class was the Marketing class. Now although all classes were exceptionally interesting, informative, and important, I was particularly attracted to this one because of it’s structure and how marketing was brought into a new light in this program with the instrumental 5 C’s of Marketing model.

In one last note, I would like to say thank you to Nigel Hayes, Mirea Serres, Ariadna Moix, and all the professors at EADA for helping to make this program such an unforgettable experience. I can say that today I truly am prepared for today’s business world.

Yannick Kpodar

International Master in Management 2011-2012

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