Where does the ESSEC Global MBA - Luxury Brand Management major take you?
We followed up with a graduate to see where she was after finishing her MBA.
Sienna Liang, class of 2013, shares her experience:
1) What drew you to work in the luxury field and study the ESSEC Global MBA?
Passion. Similarly to most of the Global MBA participants, I could say the main reason I chose to work in the luxury field is my passion for the luxury jewellery sector. Being a gemologist myself, I would like to work for the best luxury jewellery & watches brand, which would allow me to discover and explore the most beautiful gem stones. I also love the dynamism and the challenge of this industry.
Why ESSEC? ESSEC is famous for training managers in the luxury industry. The Luxury major of the MBA program is like a diamond itself, covering various facets in the luxury industry including fashion, jewellery & watches, automobile, beauty cosmetics, wine & spirits, etc. What makes it shine like a diamond is the extensive network it carries in the luxury industry. I particularly enjoyed all the opportunities to attend the presentations and talks by the senior executives in the luxury industry.
2) Could you describe your career path after ESSEC? What are your current role and responsibilities?
Upon my graduation, I was lucky to receive a few offers from companies in different locations. I chose the Boutique Manager position for Piaget in Dubai. I was responsible for the opening of the new Piaget boutique in the Dubai Mall.
My responsibilities included: all the operational activities of the boutique, i.e. motivating and managing the team to exceed sales target and client expectations; training them about new product knowledge and customer service; monthly reporting and forecasting for sales, stocks and different KPIs; drafting action plans for business development; visual merchandising; working closely with the marketing department for events; ensuring that Richemont Group procedures and policies are closely followed at a boutique level; recruitment of new staff, etc…
Today I am working as Prestige Sales advisor for Cartier in the United States.
3) Was there anything in particular about the Global MBA that helped prepare you for your career path or qualify you for your current position?
Apart from all the necessary skills and valuable knowledge I have gained from my MBA program, I found the field trips to Hong Kong, Dubai and Milan were the most valuable part for me. Listening to advice from CEOs and senior executives in the industry reinforced my decision to pursue my career in retail management upon graduation. Knowing exactly what I wanted to do from the beginning and the exact sector I wanted to enter really helped me to work hard to meet the requirements for the jobs I wanted.
4) What advice would you give to current students in the program?
Be open minded when you choose your career path after the Global MBA program. Don't narrow your mind to choose a particular role or sector. Most of the time, entering one door will open another door for you. Remember to keep in touch with all the contacts you meet during the programme, especially if they are from the companies you are interested in working for. Always do better than necessary to exceed their expectation if you get the chance for an interview.
And most importantly, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Be passionate, be confident and be prepared, these will help you create the highest expression of your talent and will help you to shine through in every interview.