Sainsbury Management Fellows

Interview 5: Alessio Falcone

Alessio Falcone (MSc, Università degli Studi di Roma ‘La Sapienza’ Chemical Engineering, Sapienza), IESE Business School

Alessio Falcone FINAL EDITBiog: Before starting his journey at IESE Business School, Alessio was working in London in the oil and gas industry. Within Bechtel, the USA’s largest EPC company, he was a project/process engineer responsible for complex hydraulic calculation, technical drawing and the design for LNG, Gas Processing or Refining complexes.

What inspired you to study for an MBA?
I decided to get a business education for multiple reasons. In terms of goals, my objective is to grow my portfolio of experiences outside the engineering field and thus differentiate myself to achieve a flexible and more rounded profile. On a personal level, I’ve always had an interest in the world of business but was never fully able to grasp all the nuances. Now at IESE I am satisfying my intrinsic motivations, discussing business cases every day and understanding the underlying motives. Although it may sound ambitious, in the long run, I want to be able to take decisions which will positively impact not only the company I work for but the entire society.

How did you hear about the SMF scholarship?
In order to decide to which business school to apply everyone goes through an intensive search for information, which often involves talking to people that can give fresh news from the inside. While doing this networking I found Sainsbury Management Fellows who  were very supportive and helped me, often times sharing a similar background and similar aspirations.

Why did you apply for a scholarship?
I applied for the scholarship because I share the same vision of this amazing group of people and I wanted to be part of their bigger plan. I believe that engineers with a business education can drive industrial growth in the UK and from that generate public benefit. Valuing this project and its benefits, it is in my interest to keep it going and contribute myself to the development of the scheme. That being said, when presented with the opportunity to apply and join this network of professionals there was no room for doubt.

How has the scholarship helped you?
Receiving the scholarship is an honour that drives me to give the best every day and to live up to the promise I made to deliver. At the same time, the scholarship means joining a very large group of professionals that have gone through a similar path. At the beginning of this adventure I will have the opportunity to ask for guidance and mentoring that will act as a catalyst to my career.  Also, it is well-known that MBAs are quite expensive and this scholarship has given me peace of mind to choose academic/professional options that otherwise would have been ruled out.

What programme are you taking?
The IESE MBA is a two-year programme of which the first half is common for all students while the second year is composed of electives that shape the curriculum.

What’s your ambition after you graduate?
For the short term, my objective is to work in the energy sector within the UK.  Leveraging on my experience in the engineering field, I aim to move towards a more business-related function such as business development or corporate finance in the oil and gas industry.  In the long run, I am aiming for a leadership/high management role in which my decisions will have a larger impact on the economic environment. That said, during the MBA I will be exposed to a myriad of possibilities which I’m sure will leave room for new ideas that may impact the details of the execution of my plan.

What have been your impressions on starting your course?
So far the MBA is the most intense, most rewarding and most mind blowing experience of my whole life!   Every day I analyse in detail three business cases and discuss in class three more, leaving just enough room to get up-to-date with the latest news from the world of business and to do career-oriented activities such as defining and improving my personal brand, tailoring it to the market of interest. I’m on a steep learning curve and every case I approach I feel a little bit more competent having seemingly unimportant information screaming for attention.

Moreover, there are constant and continuous interactions with people from different backgrounds allowing me to learn something new that may be about a Qatari entrepreneurial business or PE investments in Brazil.

This journey is exceeding my expectations and I would strongly recommend it to everyone because regardless of the professional application, this level of education would improve everyone’s life.

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