William Ibsen was born and raised on the west coast of Norway, when he finished high school he served one year of military service in the Arctic Circle, then he decided to do his Bachelor degree in Finance with honors at IBS in Budapest. After finishing his Bachelor’s degree, he decided to pursue the Master in Management at EADA in Barcelona. Nowadays he is working as a Cyber Security Advisor at Crowdstrike in Barcelona.
We caught up with him and asked about his career path after his journey through EADA.
Tell us about your job as a Cyber Security Advisor, what are your main responsibilities?
I work in business development for Crowdstrike, mainly new business and my role is to connect and advise larger companies in the Nordics on their digital infrastructure. The main objective of my job is to provide risk mitigation and digital security for our clients.
What is the most challenging part of your job? and what is the most rewarding?
I think coordination is always something to be mindful of, there are many actors and moving parts both internally and externally that need to be considered. This is often due to different geographical locations, busy schedules and time zones, but we always make it work in the end.
The most rewarding part of my job is understanding the value that we provide our clients and more importantly on a personal note is the international work environment we have at our office in Barcelona. An environment very similar to the one EADA provides.
Why did you decide to pursue a Master in Management instead of continuing in the finance industry?
I think, after working in Investment Banking, I realized that I wanted more direct interaction with clients. In finance, you often find yourself working a lot with numbers and I wanted to work more with people. I thought, and still think to this day, that finance is very interesting and I’m very happy that I have the combination of both. Also due to my academic background being rather heavy on the business side, I decided to pursue jobs in IT related fields as I believe it’s important and almost close to a necessary experience to have in the future.
What aspects of the Master in Management would you highlight? How did the programme prepare you for your current position?
The biggest aspect I would highlight of my Master is definitely the people. EADA does a very good job in selecting the participants to create a diverse and dynamic environment. The professors are very practical and have relevant hands-on experience in their respective fields, which was very refreshing after studying a bachelor that was more theory orientated.
In addition, it’s important to mention the people who work behind the scenes that you do not notice all of the time but they are the ones that keep the wheels turning. I’m referring to the EADA staff like the ones in the knowledge center, library, career service, reception etc. They always support us with a smile and hardly ever get the praise they truly deserve.
You learn a lot by constantly working with people from different backgrounds with different views and mindsets than yourself and that lends perspective to how I approach most things in my day to day life, both personally and professionally.
How do you think the extracurricular activities of EADA, such as Clubs, Market Assessment Programme, helped you to develop skills for your future career?
I think the common denominator for all of them is collaboration, since you’re constantly working with other people. Except for the Market Assessment Programme you don’t get to pick and choose who you work with, which is often the case in real life business settings. However, it shouldn’t matter as you are all working towards a common goal and EADA are very focused on not only mixing the groups but also constantly rotating them, which also reflects a typical work environment where people come and go. If everyone focuses on doing their part right and is accountable for their tasks it usually works. Working in teams is a good way of combining strengths and mitigating weaknesses by assisting each other to achieve the team’s objectives.
You had the opportunity to study during the pandemic lockdown period, would you highlight something about EADA’s adaptation to this?
The pandemic hit Spain in the middle of our Exam week and they had to close down the campus before we could finish our last one. After just a week, EADA had managed to find a solution to take all our classes and exams online and made sure we could still graduate. Towards the end of the trimester we even managed to attend in-person lectures with all of the safety precautions we have been accustomed to for the past two years like masks, sanitizers and social distancing. It was a time of high uncertainty and no one believed it would be as severe as the pandemic turned out to be, but throughout the remainder of the academic year, EADA was very good with communicating and keeping us informed. They were very transparent and that is something I believe was very reassuring for all of us.
What advice would you give to the current students at EADA?
Firstly, make the most of it! The year goes by really quickly and all of a sudden you’re attending the graduation ceremony. Try to be good at saying yes to the opportunities that present themselves, do not end your experience in Barcelona regretting you didn’t do enough.
Lastly, use the alumni network! You’re now part of a global network of professionals from EADA, with tons of experience, connections and valuable insights. Leverage that network, whether it’s for job opportunities, interview prep or just general questions you may have.
Anyone from EADA is more than welcome to reach out to me on LinkedIn, I’ll gladly help out in any way I can!