Programme: Weekend MBA 2021
Nationality: Greek / British
Undergraduate education: MEng Civil Engineering, DUTh & MSc Transport Planning, ITS University of Leeds
Job prior to studying at the Business School: Strategic Planning and Advisory, AECOM
Job after studying at the Business School: Government & Infrastructure Financial Advisory, Deloitte
Iosif was looking to boost his career and skills, specifically in developing a holistic view of business. Although his engineering training had benefited his quantitative abilities, he wanted to build on this.
Your time at Imperial College Business School
Why did you choose to study your programme and why specifically at Imperial College Business School?
Imperial offered the most attractive proposition in order to broaden my business knowledge. Not only a business school with a symbiotic link to one of the best STEM universities in the world, but with a world class Department of Finance and a particular focus on sustainability. It also offered me a programme structure that would allow me to continue fulfilling my industry role without discounting any of the face-to-face teaching and networking benefits. All that coupled with the freedom to tailor my experience from a diverse pool of electives without being siloed in a specialisation.
What was the most important learning point you took with you from the Business School?
The most important lesson was becoming comfortable with uncertainty or the notion of having to make important decisions under time and information constraints. Consequently, “it depends” is a more common answer to a question than a “yes” or a “no”.
What advice would you give to a prospective student considering studying the same programme as you?
Do your research. Spend time identifying and understanding your career objectives. Does an MBA align with them? Is there a particular programme with a proven track record of what you aspire to, or would a specialised Master’s be a better investment?
Plan and communicate. Balancing a full-time job and studies can be a very demanding ask. Plan your time to suit you and your abilities, and be encouraged to communicate with your employer, family and peers for support.
Grow. You will find yourself in an ecosystem that offers a wonderful opportunity to grow. Take it – don’t be afraid to challenge yourself, get out of your comfort zone, build on your strengths and improve your perceived weaknesses.
Tell us about your current job
How was your career transformed following your programme?
The programme supported my career progression as I transitioned from engineering consulting to corporate finance. Whist I had a good understanding of infrastructure projects, the programme enhanced my understanding of strategic and financial aspects leading to a holistic appreciation of the sector.
How do you plan to use the skills and knowledge you gained during the programme within your career going forward?
The MBA has reshaped how I think and approach certain aspects. A combination of soft and hard skills that I put to practice daily and are the fundamentals for personal and professional development.
What do you enjoy most about your current work?
It would be rather difficult to choose just one. My colleagues, the variety and breadth of our projects and the impact we make as a company are definitely on the top of my list. I am very lucky to work alongside exceptionally talented individuals across a wide range of projects – from transport funding to energy policy, government business and capital projects. We work together with key decision makers in the public and private space, providing support on some of the most challenging issues they face.
What are the most exciting/difficult challenges facing your sector currently?
Infrastructure is at a critical point. Ensuring continuous investment during uncertainty, understanding the infrastructure needs in the post COVID world, the implications and impact of EU Exit on skills and funding, as well as aligning with government carbon mandates and the Net Zero vision.
In what way is remaining connected to your alumni network important to you?
I met great people at the programme and in the process made some good friends. Although we have stayed in touch, catching up from time to time, this peer network has been the first point of contact to ask for advice, discuss ideas and celebrate our successes. Furthermore, having access to the wider Imperial alumni network is quite compelling, and a benefit not many business schools can offer.