Programme: OneMBA Class of 2020
Job title: Director Netherlands at Ramboll
Previous degree: double master in public administration and environmental science at Indiana University, O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, bachelor of art in geology at Bryn Mawr College
Marianne lives in Delft with her partner. On the weekends she enjoys rowing, bicycling, and cooking.
1. Why did you decide to do the OneMBA?
“My company is growing in the Netherlands and internationally. I anticipate a more complex business model – so I wanted to improve my bag of tools. I work on environmental risk analysis for mergers and acquisitions, and I work with a lot of CEOs and managers. I see the results of their MBAs when I work with them, so that triggered me to do an MBA too. The OneMBA at RSM has a good reputation. It is close to home. And it is international, which matches my work.”
2. How is the OneMBA experience affecting your work?
“I have started applying the principles of the classes in my work. Being in the programme makes me analyse internal processes more critically, and I feel a greater responsibility to do something about this. My thoughts are not always new ideas, but I am learning how to frame them and put things into action.”
3. How has the Personal Leadership Programme (PLD) affected you?
“It presses you to examine everything you do, and is directed at your learning and growth process. Combined with new information from other classes, this compels you to bring (positive) change to things around you.”
4. Do you notice different approaches when you work within your global teams?
“The differences we have are from the various sectors and methods of work. Some team members are from finance, others from manufacturing operations, still others from service sectors – so they take different approaches to work. Of course there are social differences too. I am learning a lot culturally from working with Asian peers. The Chinese make a huge effort in getting to know the rest of the world – we in the west could learn from this. In China there is a regard for life-nature balance, but outside of China you do not hear about this very much. We all need to learn from this and appreciate it more.”
5. With your schedule, how do you manage the cross-continental projects?
“I have a work life and a private life; and I now have a OneMBA persona too. I have to co-ordinate these three. Working hard isn’t difficult for my peers and me, we’re used to that. But this is a new set of organisation and communications that must be accommodated as well. The first few projects at OneMBA were difficult, we were all trying to accommodate each other, and at times we created more work for ourselves than perhaps necessary. It is much easier for us as we proceed into our second round of teams and assignments – we understand the score now and have become accustomed to our new work programme.”
6. What has been the best part of OneMBA for you so far?
“The programme is geared towards putting a different kind of business people into the world. I do not yet know how I will bring my contribution into practice to make a (more) positive change in my company and the world. Tangibly, I have gained greater awareness of the global trade market, and our global interdependence; and I like getting to know the other students well – it’s a wonderful surprise to find everyone’s story behind their front.”
7. After the OneMBA, what does the future hold?
“I don’t know where this journey will lead. There is the topical learning we do, which I can apply to work directly at present, or to my later future; but there is also holistic learning we do that is part of the experience, to embrace a certain ‘jumping on board’ – on a growth process. Ask me again in 2020, when we complete the programme!”