Engineer manager

From Engineer to Manager: Why you should study business after an engineering degree

by Otmane Rahmouni

In a continuously changing world where companies increasingly require new skills, hybrid competencies have clearly become a competitive advantage in the job market for fresh graduates and experienced professionals alike. In this article I will tell you about the reasons behind my decision to pursue a Master in Management at ESCP Business School after graduating the engineering school Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Rabat, in Rabat Morocco.

The best programme to complement an engineer’s profile

As an engineering graduate I lack managerial skills and business-related knowledge that are essential for making the difference in an extremely competitive world full of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. After graduating with an engineering degree, my curiosity prompted me to look for a programme that would complement my technical profile, and the MiM met my criteria. In ESCP Business School I have the opportunity to shape my career path with a diverse set of skills, particularly as the MiM allows students to choose 3 among 58 specialisations covering a wide range of fields. 

As for me, I chose the Financial and Sustainability Reporting for the CFO specialisation, at the cross road of Finance, Accounting and Sustainability. These courses prepare future CFOs to work in high-growth areas of corporate financial planning and analysis as well as ESG reporting. As an engineer who did not understand how to shape the financial decisions and financial reporting systems to respond to sustainability issues, I acquired a deep understanding of current practices in sustainability evaluation and communication, sustainable growth strategies involving the usage of accounting fundamentals and key aspects related to investment banking.

After my second semester, I will take a Gap year to gain hands-on experience and fine-tune my professional project, then carry out an exchange programme in one of the ESCP Business School partner institutions and finally pursue the “Digital Project Management” specialisation to gain the skills that I need to design the modern reality of companies in the era of digital transformation.

Gaining international exposure

After having lived for 23 years in Morocco, I felt the need to gain international exposure, and develop multicultural awareness.

The Master in Management allows its students to go places, for instance I was able to study the first semester in Turin and the second in Paris. These experiences allowed me to immerse myself into the local culture of both countries, develop my cross-cultural communication skills and learn Italian as a fifth language. I look forward to discovering other countries in the remainder of my masters.

In addition, the MiM programme embraces diversity as it offers the opportunity for students coming from atypical backgrounds to join. Engineers, social scientists, linguists and management students mix together to share their experience. It’s an environment that fosters knowledge sharing.

Moreover, ESCP endeavours to make the Master in Management an international environment gathering students and faculty members coming from more than 50 and 30 countries respectively, which makes it a unique human experience.

Expanding my network

I consider that having an extensive network is one of the most valuable assets one can have, for instance networking allows a person to keep track of his/her field’s evolution and therefore anticipate significant changes and to get support when facing gray issues it allows also professionals willing to carry out their own project to easily recruit like-minded persons. With its 1200 students the MiM programme at ESCP is definitely a great opportunity for me to expand my network especially since the programme is designed to make each student interact with many persons in the course. 

For instance, my language group classmates are different from my specialisation classmates which are themselves different from my elective classmates. In addition, I have the chance to study with new people every semester and meet students pursuing other programmes like specialist masters and the bachelor in management.

In the course of this programme I had other networking opportunities as the School’s career service and Alumni association organise weekly networking events with alumni and professionals.

A programme designed to prepare future managers for sustainability challenges

In order to make an impact in my career and become a responsible decision maker in the future, I think it is essential to acquire sustainability-related skills. Always at the forefront of educational innovation, ESCP Business School showed its commitment to sustainability by rethinking its MiM programme through the creation of several specialisations orientated towards sustainability, including the conception of mandatory courses and seminars addressing Ethics, Responsibility and Sustainability topics, as well as the creation of corporate partner-sponsored Chairs for Circular Economy & Sustainable Business Models (with Deloitte), Turning Points (with Cartier), and Intercultural Management (with Renault).

Final thoughts

After only two semesters at the Master in Management of ESCP, I feel that I grew mentally and technically, developed my critical thinking, my resilience and agility and acquired key managerial skills that are sought after by employers.The MiM programme is a life changing experience that offers enormous opportunities. Be ambitious and courageous and make the most of it.

About the author

Otmane Rahmouni is currently a first-year Master in Management student, and an active Student Ambassador. His previous studies were in engineering; he holds a master degree from l’Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines de Rabat, in Rabat Morocco.

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