Why study an EMBA as an intrapreneur – Interview with Raluca Ene
As we’re getting ready to welcome our 10th cohort for the EMBA program and celebrate 10 years of Maastricht School of Management Romania, it’s time to look back and remember the amazing students that are now part of our alumni community.
Raluca Ene is one of them. She is the Managing Director of Chapter 4 Romania and has started her EMBA when she was already an intrapreneur, so she is another great example of motivation, dedication and time management. Raluca has shared her experience at the program, what she took from it and how it changed her, both personally and professionally.
Tell us a bit about your professional track so far
I am a communication consultant for 16 years almost to date 😊, and loving it dearly. 8 years ago I started the Romanian office of Chapter 4, a local-meets-regional-meets global communication agency with a core business in reputation strategy and content management. But I started the company as an intrapreneur, meaning that I am not one of the shareholders.
This never stopped me in always considering the Chapter 4 team my family and the office my home-away-from-home. Moreover, I discovered I took a whole lot of satisfaction from the management side of the endeavor, although (or rather because) it challenged every bit of my brain. That’s why at a certain point in time the self-made me needed help in finding out the next steps in the company’s development,
Why an EMBA? And why at MSM?
Well, being curious and ambitious served me well for the first years of running Chapter 4 Romania. But at a certain point, scaling the business raised questions I only guessed the answers to. Therefore, I looked for not only a confirmation of what I thought would be best for our team, but also a bigger picture over the business environment in particular and the local economy in general, with a focus on entrepreneurship.
This focus transformed into the most important filter when looking for an EMBA: a business school that went beyond the academia and had a strong entrepreneurial backbone, so that its environment would serve my purpose. Believe it or not, there are not many out there: Maastricht School of Management stood up immediately.
Sergiu Neguț, whom I respect tremendously, and one of his presentations at a business event were the drivers, while Dora Surugiu-Kocsolade shook on it during the next coffee break 😊. I am still thanking Dora for many moments when she was instrumental in helping me keep my direction straight.
What would you say was the impact of the EMBA on your professional activity?
Being the decision maker in the company did the trick, as I was able to take out bits and pieces of most of the EMBA courses and implement them in our activities right the next day. Some of them worked, some of them proved not to be the right things for us, but all in all I got a much realistic picture about our role as communicators and reputation builders in the local economic ecosystem.
This led to much better business decisions and a much better strategic approach of our clients’ reputation issues, since I learned so much about business not only from our teachers, but also from my colleagues, amazing entrepreneurs and managers themselves.
How about your personal life, do you think it changed you in any way?
It did, most definitely. I learned to look beyond myself and carefully consider the context before making any judgment. I also learned how to keep a close eye on the objectives and not let myself distracted by ego. But most importantly, as I am rather an introvert, I discovered how amazing having a tribe is.
Because that’s what we became, all of us in Cohort RO06 – a tight community of minds and souls. Two years later, we are still friends, we meet regularly and we share all the ups and downs of life, we support each other and cheer each other, and go to each other’s events and praise each other. Much like a family, isn’t it? 😊
How did you manage to juggle managing your business, whilst also studying an MBA and having personal time?
Joining an EMBA program was a decision with assumed consequences. It wasn’t easy, I won’t sugarcoat it, but you know what, having challenges that stimulated my mind all the time made all those Saturdays and Sundays made it so much easier to spend time in school. Plus, I gained so much in terms of amazing quality time with incredibly smart, generous, kind and considerate people that inspired me to always look for a better version of myself.
As for the business, I always considered the classes part of my day-to-day job, so to say, as my mind constantly worked upon office issues for which solutions appeared during a presentation or a book or a paper I had to do for school. An overall win for me, I’d say.
Do you want to see if you would also benefit from the EMBA experience? Get in touch to set a meeting with a school representative and find out answers to all your questions.