Introducing Boss #1: Monika and Innovation

Over the next weeks, we’ll be introducing a few of the many bosses up for auction at the Bid for a Boss event on 27 April.  Don’t forget to register either here or on Facebook

Boss # 1: Monika Blaser, Head of the Innovation Lab at PostFinance

Monika offers a tour of the innovation lab to get insights into the innovation process and the toolbox PostFinance uses. The highest bidder can “participate in a workshop for a current innovation project to check out how we foster innovation. Depending on interests you can also participate in a pitching event, get feedback from the audience for your own business idea or go to the pitching clinic to improve your own pitching skills. ½ a day, lunch/Apéro included.”

And even if you don’t win the bid, you can meet Monika during networking activities.

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#Throwback Thursday: Esin Cengiz

The Missing Podium. From left: Robert Buttery auctioning Dean Antje Leukens and Esin Cengiz finding it thoroughly amusing

“At the kick-off event for IM Alumni we were beginners and made a few hilarious mistakes. Not only were we not able to print the name tags on time, we realized we didn’t have a podium for the charity auction and Robert as auctioneer and Antje who was being auctioned tried to stand on the same chair. This was hilarious. Later at the speed-networking there were some misunderstandings as some thought it was speed-dating.  But it was great – so good to launch this connection and I’m certainly looking forward to the next one – the Bid for a Boss on 27 April – where we do have a podium!”

Graduated BSc IM 2009

Now Head of HR and of CSR at Pernod Ricard “What I really love about my job is working with people, supporting them supporting them to be at their best as well being there for them when they just need someone to talk and share their thoughts. It’s especially the change management that I find challenging and rewarding.  It allows me to be creative and innovative and put my footprint on our culture – the way we want to work, to shape our organization. Hence why I was actively looking for roles in HR where I could embrace the change management aspect in my area of responsibilities. What I enjoy a lot about working at Pernod Ricard is definitely the great brands we have but also our decentralized organization which  gives us the liberty to shape our business according to the Swiss market needs. We are all asked to be entrepreneurs and take responsibilities for our decisions and actions. We are quick to make decisions and bring change, and that is what keeps me going every day. That also is reflected in our CSR actions where we should not just talk about it, but do it seriously, set an example.  So, for instance, we’re now changing our cars to emission A standards and introducing a paperless office or working with SpiritsSuisse to actively raise awareness about misuse of alcohol.  Additionally, we’re sponsoring ESN (European Student Network) parties at the FHNW with the objective of supporting responsible drinking.”

How did studying IM help? ”It taught me to be flexible and open-minded. This attitude was intrinsic in the studies and then consolidated on the semester abroad. My world was opened to the fact that different people perceive things differently and do things differently – you can’t just go from your own perceptions.  Of course we experienced this too during our studies here – there were many students from different cultures.  And our lecturers – not only different cultures but teaching us diverse topics: our professor in Maths and Statistics also taught an elective in Books of the World. I truly believe that we are very lucky to have gone through the studies as we have, we were exposed to diversity in a way that is very special and prepared us all to what was to come. I think that is the reason why I enjoy being the Chair of the IM Alumni Association Board so much, to be able to give back and contribute to the great community of IM is still very rewarding and exciting as ever. It is great to see that every year the school is graduating top class students and opens many doors for them to go and be great at what they do. I am certainly grateful that I have had the opportunity to study International Management at the FHNW, not only for the great people and experiences but for the long lasting relationships I have gained out of it.”

After Graduation “After an initial internship in HR at PwC I became an HR Assistant and HR Consultant @PwC.  Then I became PMO for the Global Talent Acquisition team to shape the new recruitment strategy for Zurich Insurance Company. In 2013 I had the great chance to join 3M EMEA, where my role as HR Coordinator was to coordinate/manage the start-up of the newly created Supply Chain Center of Expertise EMEA in Burgdorf, moving over 200 people from across the world to Switzerland and building up the organization from day one on. Since 2013 I am also the Chair of the IM Alumni Association Board.”

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27 April in Olten: Build your network, build their future

It’s back.  An evening of catching up with former classmates, networking with other alumni, and having a pop at winning exclusive time with an interesting “boss” who will  inspire, advise or coach you. And if you don’t win – well, there’s a chance to get to know them during speed-networking or networking bingo.  Yah.

We have 15 amazing high-flyers offering unique opportunities (see auction catalogue).  And remember- this is for charity.  This time we’re paying forward by sponsoring alumnus John Uwaeke’s Catalyst4Change which aims to empower children in rural Nigeria by providing laptops and IT training.  Have a look at the video and you’ll see the need for this.

Sign up using the contact form below or go to our Facebook page and sign up for the event there.

Big for a Boss: 7pm – 10.30 pm, Thursday 27 April, Atrium B, Campus OVR in Olten (bar opens from 6.30 pm)

 

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#Throwback Thursday, Sabrina Gallardo

Sabrina and fellow participants get ready for a banquet with officials during the 2010 Insight China seminar. From left: Michael von Arx, Sabrina Gallardo, Andrea Krebs, Chung EnhTaing.

Sabrina and fellow participants get ready for a banquet with officials during the 2010 Insight China seminar. From left: Michael von Arx, Sabrina Gallardo, Andrea Krebs, Chung EnhTaing.

“I had on no occasion experienced anything like the banquets with Chinese leaders we had during Insight China in 2010. I had never been so far away from home, in such a different culture and there we were, proving our great respect to them, drinking shot after shot with these officials. Not all students could keep up with these drinking habits. This trip was an amazing experience and certainly taught me to be much more tolerant.”

Graduated BSc IM 2010

Sabrina GallardoNow Country Division Controller and deputy CFO at Siemens Industry, Switzerland

“Consulting and supporting projects is what I love best. Cost is key for me so the opportunities to analyse situations and develop a strategy allows me to use my whole potential and not just my mathematical abilities.  It also involves more contact with people.  Obviously my job involves cycles of controlling where I have to deliver budgets and quarterly forecasts and so on but then for the rest of the year I am involved in projects on a diverse range of topics such as pricing tools, IT dashboards or recently I worked on business development based on the impact of the strong Swiss franc. Here I had to not only work with finance but also with logistics and the MarCom guys, exploring what the projected impacts were on the Siemens volume and the clients’ behaviour… I can get very involved and passionate about such projects.”

How did studying IM help?  “The key thing for me, I think, are the student networks.  These are really strong – not only during studies when we help each other study, and have fun at parties, but also afterwards. I was astonished, when I came back to Switzerland after working abroad for 4 years, that my former classmates were there for me, supported my job search. The most helpful course for me was Consulting, I took this as a minor and it taught me how to speak with different stakeholders.”

Post-Graduation During the on-site Insight China, Sabrina actually linked up with her future employer, Alstom, during the Insight China seminar. She asked if she could send her CV and next thing found herself on a train to Paris to be Financial Analyst for the Latin America Region & Controller of the Business Unit Alstom Transport. Next she took on the role of Business Manager with Estée Lauder Companies, based in Madrid, where she concurrently completed a MSc in International Relations and Affairs at the Comillas Pontifical University.

Want to catch up with Sabrina? You’ll find her on our LinkedIn group.

 

 

 

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Bid for Boss funds go to charity

Today we  donated 2000 Swiss Francs to Andrew Frei and Flavio Schneeberger”s Swiss Support Foundation! This money was raised by the IM Community at the “Bid for a Boss” charity event on May, 16th this year. Nine “bosses” went under the hammer and just over CHF 3500 was raised in total and has now been redeemed from the various generous bidders.  After covering the costs for the event plus the graduation prize, CHF 2000 remained for the charity SSF set up by alumnus Andrew and Flavio.

SSF works predominantly with children in the Philippines to improve their lives, especially by funding accident and health insurance (see www.SwissSupportFoundation.ch).  alan and andrew freiBrothers Alan (left) and Andrew Frei at the Bid for a Boss event on 16 May this year.  Alan was the guest speaker  and Andrew, an IM alumnus, is one of the founders of the Swiss Support Foundation which was voted as the recipient for funds raised at the charity auction.

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Bosses, Networking, Fundraising: What an Event

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Difficult to say what was most enjoyable about the Bid for a Boss Event on Friday 16 May: Alan Frei’s highly entertaining and motivating talk on Entrepreneurship, the  successful and at times amazing bidding while 10 successful “bosses” were auctioned off to raise over CHF 3500 for charity, the always popular speed-networking?  All of that and more.

Thanks to everyone -guests, student helpers and all of you who came – for making this such a success.  To relive the memories – or see what you missed out on – go to our Facebook page or  see the slider above.

The charity selected by all participants on Friday to receive a donation from the event profits was Swiss Support Foundation which was co-founded by alumnus Andrew Frei – we’ll keep you posted not only on how the funds are used but also on how it went when the “bosses” met up with their winners.

 

 

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Forecast 2013 and message from the IM Alumni Board

Last year saw the launch of our Association. After the fantastic kick-off event in May when the charity auction raised well over Fr. 4000, we were able to finance a small welcome gift for all the new alumni in October who graduated and start up our website (www.imalumni.com). Then Fr. 2000 was transferred to IM alumna Regina Naseremba’s Beatrice International College in Uganda. The school is thrilled with this contribution and Regina reports it will probably go towards the funding of a third school block now that registrations are rising. We’ll keep you posted on progress. A big thanks to all for contributing to such a worthwhile project. Those of you who have meanwhile redeemed the lecturer/alumni/student you bid for, remember to send us photos of the events so we can post them. We also had a first networking result – an alumna was recruited to give a guest lecture at your alma mater.

This year will see a couple of IM Alumni events. Our Karaoke Event is set for March and will be expanded to include a few surprises and extra’s. The new campus building opens in summer- and we’ll tie in with that. We will also launch our IM Alumni prize. We’ll give you the details about these and other activities in January.

So, we toast you all and hope 2013 is a very lucky and happy year for you all.

Flo, Esin, Robel, Firat, Raina, Mario, Brigitte

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Auction Proceeds to Ugandan School

The funds raised by the IM Alumni for the Beatrice International College have been transferred. There were some delays as some of the money raised was not immediately paid in but – thanks everyone – the bookkeeping is now functioning. We will keep you updated on what this school in Uganda, set up by IM alumna Regina Nasseremba, does with your generous donation.

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