Warm memories and exciting business adventures were discussed over tapas and content-driven activities at a reunion for the OneMBA Class of 2021 from Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) in Barcelona, Spain, from 13-16 April 2023.

The international experience was attended by 25 of the 34 alumni from the cohort. In addition to catching up with each other and with RSM, the class indulged in an exciting programme with a company visit, a cooking class and, of course, leadership development.

A company journey

The group visited renewable energy provider Holaluz, where its founding CEO Carlota Pi Amorós and the board of directors presented the company’s journey, from start-up to becoming a leader in green energy.

Alumnus Jeroen Zonneveld was impressed with how Holaluz has cross-functional teams focused on specific topics with clear goals for the coming weeks, ensuring that teams feel empowered to make decisions and take action. “Seeing this working at scale was inspiring to take home and see what elements I can implement in my teams. Also, this was one of the first companies I’ve encountered where I saw a data and analytics team having established a data-driven culture within all layers of the company.”

Rocking leadership

For leadership development, the OneMBA alumni participated in a musical session by SalvaROCK. This entrepreneur is an innovative teacher of marketing and creativity. In the first part of the creative leadership session, alumni learned from Salva – accompanied with an electric guitar – how lessons from disruptions in the music world can be used in business. Alumnus Zonneveld wrote on LinkedIn that the music industry was one of the first to face digital transformation, including piracy and streaming. “We learned about the PNI framework which forces you to evaluate a threat or opportunity and write down several positive, negative and interesting (PNI) thoughts on the topic. This helps in finding new avenues to explore and deal with these elements. An interesting dynamic that I can hopefully use when I inevitably get confronted with change.”

This talk was followed by a workshop in which the alumni did practical exercises which can be applicable to many different life and business situations.

Cooking up a feast at Canela Fina, the alumni experimented with various ingredients of paella and learned all the tips and tricks to cook tasty tapas under the watchful eye of a professional chef.

Staying connected

The importance of maintaining connections with fellow alumni cannot be overstated, says alumna Liang Yang (OneMBA, 2021). “It facilitates the exchange of ideas, experiences and knowledge of the latest trends and practices across various industries. Second, it creates opportunities for professional collaborations, job prospects and network expansion.”

RSM’s Meta Haag-Mikec and Saskia Treurniet also joined the reunion. Some of the OneMBA alumni also joined a Barcelona alumni chapter event, hosted in a restaurant by the alumni local chapter.

Yang: “The highlight of the programme was undoubtedly the much-awaited reunion. Luckily there was ample free time to catch up with classmates, allowing us to reconnect and reminisce about our shared experiences during our RSM studies. I eagerly anticipate future reunions and opportunities to engage with the RSM community.”

Global Executive MBA

The OneMBA programme has now been replaced by the Global Executive MBA (GEMBA) programme. The GEMBA programme is a transformative and intensive 21-month journey in leadership development, in which participants are empowered with knowledge, insights into their personal style of leadership and skills, and the strategic vision to lead their organisation with clarity, confidence and integrity. RSM’s Global Executive MBA connects students to a global network of peers, thought leaders and change agents. Students experience all the dynamics of international leadership and business, where it happens, as it happens.

More information

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe’s top-ranked business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam – a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM’s primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers. www.rsm.nl

For more information about RSM or this release, please contact Erika Harriford-McLaren, communications manager for RSM, on +31 10 408 2877 or by email at harriford@rsm.nl.

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