Preparing for success in the global economy: Are you a citizen of the world?

Preparing for success in the global economy: Are you a citizen of the world?


Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM), is one of Europe’s leading business schools and offers a portfolio of top-ranked programmes. Their MBA programmes equip students with a global mindset and prepare them for the global job marketplace.

The global mindset

In today’s globalised economy, demand is high for executives with international experience and a “global mindset.” Studies by the UK’s Centre for Economics and Business Research suggest that 90 percent of companies believe that hiring employees with global or cross-cultural experience has a direct impact on their bottom line. And it makes sense.

The key to career advancement

Globalisation and digital innovation have disrupted the way business is done in our inter-connected world. Today’s employees can, and indeed are often expected to, collaborate directly with colleagues overseas on international projects. The added value of a diverse and cross-cultural workforce has been well documented in terms of international collaboration, innovation and access to new markets.

It’s no wonder that hiring managers value employees that can bring international experience, background and perspective to the table. According to the Erasmus Student Network, 92 percent of hiring companies prioritise the transversal skills – collaboration, flexibility, different styles of working and the ability to communicate effectively (including in a foreign language) – that students acquire from studying abroad.

Also valued are a global mindset from exposure to diverse business cultures, and experience from international placements. The advantages of international exposure for graduates entering the job market are manifold. Not only does cross-border experience help in securing a good job, global posts are also key to achieving promotions and career advancement.

In today’s globalised economy, demand is high for executives with international experience and a global mindset.

Career Development Manager at Rotterdam School of Management, Justin Sheehan, explains why: “In an increasingly competitive and global job marketplace, international roles or placements can really assist in demonstrating the value you can bring to a company in consolidating markets and it may actually strengthen your chances of making it to the C-suite.”

So how do you acquire the kind of experience, know-how, insights and broadened perspective that will not only make you attractive to recruiting managers, but also support a successful and fulfilling career in a business world that is ever more international? An international MBA is a good place to start, says Sheehan.

A gateway to the world

Brandon Kirby, director of MBA admissions at RSM, understands that a significant proportion of aspiring MBA students are looking to launch an international career. And RSM, he says, is the best place to start.

“If you are doing an MBA, it's likely you want to build the skills and mindset to launch a career with enterprise-level companies, and to be able to take your career anywhere in the world. At RSM we strive to prepare our students for the global job marketplace. This means delivering the kind of global exposure, broadened thinking and cross-cultural sensitivity that will help them stand out and form the basis for their future success.”

The global journey offered by the RSM MBA, he says, begins when students arrive at Rotterdam. Known as the Gateway to the World, Europe’s largest port city boasts more than 170 nationalities, the Netherlands' first Moroccan mayor and a vibrant multicultural atmosphere that informs the city’s diversity. A diversity, says Kirby, that is magnified in the MBA classroom.

“At RSM, you’ll learn about people from around the world by sitting next to them in class. Our class of 2018 was 97 percent international, so every day you’re working closely with people from diverse backgrounds. This trend reoccurs every year, resulting in a wonderfully diverse student population in the classroom.”

Practising in a safe environment

At RSM, you’ll learn about people from around the world by sitting next to them in class.

MBA student Thiago Baiao from Brazil agrees. “People from extroverted cultures tend to dominate what happens, so you have to actively get the opinions of the ones from quieter cultures to get the best results. It’s challenging to make sure there are no interpersonal problems. The MBA at RSM provides a good learning opportunity to practise as much as you can in a safe environment. If you make mistakes, you can learn. The exposure is great if you want to work in diverse areas or internationally.”

Besides cohort diversity, the RSM MBA experience offers students a range of international study options, says Ann van Dam, MBA programme director. “In the fourth term, our students have a number of study abroad options. They go on an exchange with partners such as Wharton, Duke, CEIBS in Shanghai, IE in Spain and Melbourne Business School - every year we have numerous partner schools spanning six continents.”

Students can also participate in international study tours to explore how different cultures do business. With a range of internships, leadership experiences in Catalonia and even a dual-degree programme with the Chinese University of Hong Kong, the opportunities for global mobility are vast.

Developing a global personality 

“The international experience was integral to building the kind of insight and understanding that I was looking for,” says MBA ‘17 graduate, Islam Badr from Egypt. Badr has gone on to find a job as the EMEA business development manager at pharmaceutical multinational, ARKRAY. He attributes much of his success to the RSM experience.

“It’s a life-changing experience. You develop personally and professionally there. You learn everyday skills which are necessary to reach professional objectives and develop a global personality.” “At RSM you really become a citizen of the world.”

To find out how the Rotterdam School of Management MBA can help you build the understanding, experience, broadened mindset and global business competencies necessary to launch your international career, join their MBA Open Day on March 17 in Rotterdam.



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