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Ayoub Saboumazrag

Nationality: Moroccan
Job title: SVP Global IT & Group Deputy CIO at Majorel
Previous degree: bachelor in physics from University of Hassan II in Casablanca and a bachelor in telecom engineering

1. What was the primary reason for you to choose doing an MBA at RSM?

“I have worked non-stop since 1999. The last 10 years I was at the height of business activities, and I evolved so much and took more responsibility. But one of my passions is to learn new things, and there was no room for this. During Covid I questioned my purpose. I didn’t have an objective, and needed renewed energy. I did courses on AI and robotics but it wasn’t enough for me. I was missing the 360 degree of business knowledge in my senior roles. I can manage technology, but wanted a better overview of all the activities of a company, and manage people better and understand what drives them. I also wanted to see if I want my own business or be a leader of technology in the future. The positive change angle at RSM triggered me. This approach is really important for the future of the economy and humanity as a whole.”

2. What expectations did you have studying for your Global Executive MBA in a world in motion?

“I want to learn more about the future of business in this post-Covid world of digital transformation. I work in IT technology. This big transformation is completely changing the game. The future of business is not what we see right now, and the GEMBA can show us the activities of business and how to become future-proof. The book From risk to opportunity by RSM Professor Dirk Schoenmaker was eye-opening, easy to read and very practical. Sustainable business can help companies in the future to deal with the cyber world, changing regulations and threats that we need to tackle differently.”

3. How would you describe your RSM MBA experience so far?

“It’s a really rich and active experience, with lots of assignments and a lot of planning. I’m learning many new things about operations and analyses, and I can understand what’s behind it. Then I can put it into practice at work immediately. The marketing assignment was challenging, and I have a new passion: managerial analyses. There’s a mathematical approach to it. I also learn so much from our classmates from different environments, business backgrounds and cultures. It’s a truly beautiful experience.”

4. What impact does the Strategic Leadership Development component of the programme (SLD) have on you?

“I loved the first week of GEMBA with Dr Hannes Leroy. We learn the essence of how emotions affect the interaction with people. It’s about controlling yourself to be an active listener, to listen before talking. We need to take other people’s opinion into account. I’m trying to practise this in my work. I have a notebook in which I’m observing my own reactions in discussions so I can focus on improving myself. It’s an ongoing process.”

5. If you had to choose one Sustainable Development Goal, which one would you choose, and why?

“I’m working on a Green IT programme at work. It’s still in design, but it aims to lower the consumption of energy, so we use sustainable data centres and don’t waste energy. Through this, I can really make an impact in climate action and responsible consumption. And I want to boost gender equality. People can learn a lot from each other. Real well-being doesn’t come from fancy actions. It comes from different people with different cultures and opinions. This is how we can grow.”

6. Has your MBA journey changed your outlook on what your career will be like after doing an MBA?

“I joined the GEMBA with a fixed idea: I wanted to build my own business in five years. Now I’m not so sure. I could end up doing different things. I’m letting myself being led by coaching, and the flow of the GEMBA. I’m reviewing my options and will take a final decision when we have a clear view on what I’ll do after the GEMBA. I have an open mind in this process.”

7. What advice could you give to people who are considering doing a Global Executive MBA?

“I’m so happy with my decision to join RSM. There’s a lot of care for the students, and the professors are of high quality. You learn so much from the moment you start a new course or have a residency week. Go in open minded and see what happens. Go with the flow – you can see later how it all pans out.”