Case study

MBA graduate — Pavlos Papadimitrou

Pavlos studied for an MBA in Switzerland and suggests that taking the course when you've already gained professional experience is a great way to reflect and develop your career

When and where did you study an MBA?

I studied my MBA in Hospitality with Finance at Les Roches Hotel Management School (now Les Roches Global Hospitality Education) in Bluche, Switzerland from July 2006 to June 2007.

What is your current professional role?

I am director at HVS, a consultancy firm that specialises in providing services to the hospitality industry, based in the Athens office. My focus is on completing consulting assignments (including market and financial feasibility studies, product positioning studies, etc) and appraisals for the following tourism-related types of assets: hotels, resort properties, hospitality-driven mixed use developments and shared ownership real estate (timeshare, fractional, private residence clubs, etc).

My profession focuses on critical thinking, problem solving and working on some of the most significant and complex assignments in southeast Europe for existing or proposed properties.

Why did you decide to study an MBA?

I needed some broader field of study since my undergraduate degree was in operational research and marketing. I also wanted a challenging course to reflect on the professional experience I had by then, so that I could improve my attitude, reactions and behaviour when dealing with complex situations in a real professional environment.

Tell us about the application process

Although it has been more than ten years since I applied to the MBA programme at Les Roches, I remember doing it quite conveniently by myself online - although the use of the internet for such tasks was still in its infancy.

What did you most enjoy about the course?

I had a couple of favourite professors with whom I am still in contact. But above all, I enjoyed being part of a class with 35 students from all over the world - trying to co-operate with them by making various teams when new projects were assigned.

What was the most challenging aspect of the course?

First and foremost, the most challenging parts of the course were aspects that I didn't have previous experience in. Secondly, a challenge was keeping my mind focused on delivering my thesis following my departure from the campus.

How has the MBA benefitted your career?

My MBA has given lots of benefits for my career. It provided theoretical knowledge that otherwise would have taken me years to obtain. Through the everyday studying process as well as the exchange of opinions with my peers, it helped me to understand exactly what pathway I wanted to pursue after completing my studies.

What advice would you give to others studying an MBA?

For those already studying an MBA, keep your alumni network alive no matter what. For those thinking of doing an MBA, take full advantage of the programme by enrolling after the age of 27 so that you can reflect on the professional experience you have gained.

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