“A happy, optimistic and analytical person who believes that success is a process and not a goal at the end of the road.”
hometown: Bogota Colombia
Fun fact about yourself: A misunderstanding in a conversation with my mother led to me appearing in soccer clothes and wearing crocodiles to a social event which was also attended by the respected ex-President of Colombia. It was so embarrassing right now, but now a few years later, it was so funny!
Undergraduate school and major: University of Los Andes, Industrial Engineer
Latest Job Title and Employer: Coca-Cola FEMSA, Head of Financial Planning
What makes Atlanta a great place to get an MBA? Atlanta has a mix of social and labor features that make it the ideal location for an MBA. Firstly, it is a metropolitan city of 6 million people that is going through a significant process of growth and prosperity, with most Fortune 1000 companies having either offices or headquarters. For me, that means a great job and job opportunities. Secondly, it is a very interesting city, with an exceptionally active social life and character, where you will never get bored, reasonable cost of living, ideal for the moment of life of an MBA student. Third, in a nutshell, it’s the greenest city I’ve ever visited, so you get to get the social life of a big city, while enjoying the trees and the nature of a rustic place.
Apart from your classmates and location, What was the main part of Emory Goizueta’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? To me, the two characteristics that distinguish Goizueta MBA from other top programs are its unique approach to leadership and deliberately small class size. GBS takes leadership education seriously and evaluates it in a comprehensive manner, organized into three pillars: academic, experiential and reflective. What I like most is the experiential track that includes activities like Fort Benning and boat sailing in the BVI, as a closing activity for the Goizueta Advanced Leadership Academy (GALA) programme. You can also earn an Advanced Driving Certificate by taking an additional capstone course that combines academic and co-curricular leadership experiences. The combination of different activities and programs focused on leadership gives students a unique experience in the field.
On the other hand, Goizueta MBA’s small class size (by design) provides a specially customized experience where everyone (staff and students) will call you by your name. You will get to know your classmates well and build deep relationships with many of them resulting in a highly collaborative culture. In addition, you will have access to all MBA services (professional management, professors, etc.) in a remarkably individual way due to the staff-to-student ratio.
What course, club or activity excites you the most at Emory Goizueta? The course will be Strategy Management as it is an area that I would like to strengthen more during my MBA and learn a structured approach to it. The Goizueta Consulting Association is the club that excites me the most because it will be fundamental for me to learn how to search for a job in the United States, one of the tasks I am most concerned about as an international student. The activity that excites me the most is sailing a boat in the sea with my group at the end of the GALA course.
Describe your biggest career achievement to date: The greatest achievement of my career to date has been to contribute to the “new era” in the relationship between Coca-Cola (KO) and Coca-Coca FEMSA Colombia, which began with a new strategic agreement to pursue a joint comprehensive strategy and alignment of the two companies’ incentives from 2020 to 2022, enabling It ensures profitable and equitable growth of the entire system. With this precedent, the agreement developed in 2021 not only for Colombia, but for all countries in FEMSA and was extended until 2025. My job in this process was to evaluate and align the financial statements with KO resulting from plans and strategies designed by the commercial and marketing teams, ensuring Meet FEMSA’s economic goals. My responsibility was also to implement the agreement and to ensure that the income was properly distributed between the two companies. These types of agreements are a huge competitive advantage for the Coca-Cola system and will be the future of the bottling business model.
How has COVID-19 changed your view of your career and life in general? The coronavirus has changed a lot of things at work and in life in general. For me, the biggest change in life is not to be taken for granted and instead to evaluate opportunities for personal interaction. While administrative tasks can be done almost 100%, some personal interactions are needed to maintain the culture and build deep personal relationships. In my view, the challenge for companies and leaders is to find the balance between virtual work and personal work.
What prompted you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? There are many reasons why I should get an MBA, but the main ones are to structure my leadership, networking opportunities, the global business mindset I would like to acquire, and the skills (strategy, negotiation and problem solving) I would like to develop. For me, this is the perfect timing, both professionally and personally. I have been working for 6 years, last 2 of them are leading a team of 3 workers, so I want to raise my leadership abilities to be able to direct bigger teams in positions of higher responsibility and start building my profile for General Manager. Also, I don’t have significant responsibilities or attachments in Colombia that would prevent me from going to the United States. In the long term, I want to be a local manager for one of the big players in the Latin American region in the CPG industry. So my internship and full-time job after the MBA will target this goal and may be either strategy consulting or in a CPG firm as part of a strategic planning team.
What other MBA programs have you applied to? I applied to Chicago Booth, Kellogg, Yale, and Cornell. I was accepted in the last 3.
What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into the Emory Goizueta MBA program? My advice is to be yourself and tell your story with passion because there is no typical MBA student in Goizueta. This unique experience and background that you provide will be the reason for your acceptance and the value you will add to the class. Another tip is to give yourself enough time to think and plan your application because it is a process that requires a lot of reflection and thinking about why this program is right for you at this moment in your life.
Don’t Miss: Learn about the EMORY GOIZUETA MBA 2023