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Having 12 months of work experience and a good idea of where I wanted my career to go, I was looking for a course which would not only provide a practical business foundation but open the door to an international learning experience.
I arrived on the Masters in Management (MiM) programme intending to figure out whether I wanted to work in an agency environment, or a client-side marketing role. I knew that breaking into the marketing world could be a challenge, so being able to connect with LBS alumni was an unparalleled opportunity to broaden my contact base and gain first-hand insight into the industry.
In fact, I realised quite quickly into the course that the most important conversations would actually happen outside the classroom. For example, during the autumn term, I worked on a marketing project for an online fashion start up through the Entrepreneurship Club. I also had the chance to work on a pitch for an automobile campaign launch at a global advertising agency and participate in a brainstorm for a media agency’s new retail client. All of these opportunities I found through London Business School’s alumni network, student-run clubs, or other on-campus events.
Alongside my studies I interned part-time in strategy at Universal McCann, a global media planning agency, working on projects for a diverse set of clients from Burberry to ExxonMobil. My role required me to put into practice what I was learning in the classroom, such as analysing consumer survey results to advise on touch point strategies.
The internship also provided me with a launch pad to my role at Omorovicza Cosmetics, although I actually found out about the role at one of the School’s Career Fairs on campus. It was very different to anything I'd done before because Omorovicza Cosmetics is so small – just 15-20 employees between London and Budapest – I was able to draw from some of the methodologies in our entrepreneurship class and reach out to professors and the alumni discussion boards fairly frequently.
If I had to select one particular take-away from the MiM, it would be an event that the Luxury Club organised with LVMH at their Soho House. It was a fantastic insight into how LVMH operates, and we participated in case studies on Thomas Pink, Guerlain and TAG Heuer, which really helped me to understand how LVMH views luxury brand management. It’s something I continue to draw upon on a daily basis.
James Alexander was a recipient of the MiM LBS Fund Scholarship