Prior to starting his MBA at IESE Business School, Alessio’s professional experience was primarily in the oil and gas design consultancy sector with Saith Limited. He started out as a Mechanical Design Engineer before progressing through project management and into a lead mechanical engineering role. His experience was primarily around onshore gas pipelines and installations. His last job was to lead the design of two major gas installations in south London, for a national gas provider.
When did you start thinking about doing an MBA?
Approximately four years prior to joining. It was a very self-introspective journey to understand where I saw myself in five and ten years. I had to understand my true values and strengths. I realised that I love to lead people, shape company culture and mission.
However, I was also aware of the multiple challenges that businesses would be facing in the coming years, such as fast-paced technology advancements, a push towards sustainability and the need to increase diversity and equality in the workplace.
I saw the MBA as the natural step that would allow me to learn about these challenges in a multicultural context, and it would help me achieve a position where I could have a positive impact in an organisation.
What do you hope to achieve through your MBA experience?
I hope to develop a deep understanding of business foundations. Also, to gain from the diverse experience and perspective of my classmates. The IESE course is focused on analysis of real business cases, which I believe has great value in maximising the learning through class discussion with such a diverse cohort. Moreover, I look forward to developing a strong network of ambitious and talented professionals.
How will you use your MBA to further your career and where do you see yourself in five years time?
I intend to secure a position in a company providing either engineering design services or products. In five years’ time, I see myself working as an operations or business development manager for such a company. My main objective is to be part of an organisation that will enable me to make a positive impact in society.
How did you learn about the SMF scholarship?
While approaching IESE students I contacted a Fellow of the SMF who told me about its mission and values. I then started researching more and discussed with him the value of being part of the SMF network and how I could support the Fellowship in achieving its objectives.
What difference has the scholarship made to you?
The MBA is a considerable financial investment, especially in times of uncertainty. Without this scholarship, I would have had to finance my studies by taking a loan, which would have inevitably put financial pressure on me to consider only specific post-MBA positions. The limited financial burden will allow me to be more open to other opportunities, for example, to join a start-up or to start my own business.
What are your expectations of being part of the SMF network after business school?
I have always valued the perspective of more experienced professionals, and to be part of such a great network is an incredible opportunity for me. My goal is to maximise the learning from their experience and to develop myself as a well-rounded leader in my industry. Of course, I also look forward to giving my contribution and support directly to the organisation’s mission.
How do you hope to support SMF after you graduate from business school?
I intend to keep my commitment towards mentoring young engineers (as I did through my job and volunteering experience for the Institution of Mechanical Engineers). I also intend to support the SMF by improving its visibility and expanding the pool of people that can benefit from its wider mission.
Alessio Piscopo can be found on LinkedIn.