Juan Maldonado Alcázar

Juan Maldonado Alcázar

Study & Year of graduation: Full-time MBA 2017
Employer: Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University
Job title: Alumni Relations Manager

What are the most valuable skills that you took from your education at RSM?
Soft skills take the high spot! Many people say they are managers just because they fell into it or were promoted, but I think knowing how to engage your team and make them shine and grow to help your organisation is the true role of a manager. I would also say that 50 per cent of the knowledge you get comes not from your teachers or books, but from your classmates; from the way they engage in discussions and team assignments. It is a privilege to experience such an intense year with such talented people that push you to be a better version of yourself, and that stand by you no matter what.

What was your most memorable moment at RSM?
I'd say that the culmination of the MBA, when I delivered the farewell speech at the graduation ceremony was an amazing moment that will be in my heart forever. When I was on that stage talking to more than 900 people I saw my classmates’ happy faces, sharing the moment with the people they cared the most about. In that little moment, the energy was magical and we were bound together in an indescribable way. Best of all, I got to remind all my classmates to "dare to fight for your Will, so other people in the future can have their Will," and to thank them for the amazing experience.

How would your former classmates describe you?
I don't know; maybe as the guy who said "my man" too often? Or unlikely lover of Latin music and dance, the hater of statistics, or the creator of the Juan diet in which you survive on a diet costing 10 euros a week? Or maybe the worst person to ask for travel advice, the guy who wrote that book on Amazon, or maybe just the guy who shouted ‘yes!’ whenever he found something interesting? Or all or none of the above? Maybe a survey would give the real answer, but I'm afraid that would fall into the realm of statistics which I dislike with a passion (sorry Trevor, I admit your class was amazing though).

How do you stay connected to the school and what do you gain from it?
I love this place so much and feel so in touch with its mission that I wanted to contribute to it in a very active role! When I saw a vacancy for Alumni Relations Manager, I knew that it would be a perfect way to help newcomers and my friends stay connected to what RSM truly means: a group of people that believe the world can improve if we commit to it. RSM is a place where you discover who you are, and you can grow exponentially as long as you make the commitment to challenge yourself each day. In addition, you gain a place in a circle of trust in which everyone looks out after each other. That's the RSM I know, and the RSM I want the world to see.

What is your greatest passion in life?
I think I have too many, but the common thread is learning and being curious. Every time someone comes to me with the old "that's the way things are" or "that's how this thing is done" I like to ask why, and challenge that to figure out ways it can be improved. The worst that could happen is that nothing happens, and the best-case scenario is that I have the opportunity to change something for the better by approaching it with a curious and open mindset and showing that a particular approach didn't need to be set in stone.

What is your ‘I WILL’?
I WILL write the stories for the future generations!