Senior Client Partner, Healthcare Services at Korn Ferry and IE Brown 2012 Inga Walter is a proud member of the inaugural IE Brown cohort. Read on to find out the value she sees – from an executive recruitment standpoint – in ivy league executive MBA degrees. You’ll also find out why she’s looking forward to the next Brown Executive Alumni event.
As an executive recruiter for Korn Ferry, what value do you see in an ivy league MBA degree on an applicant’s resume?
“It is a plus to have a degree from an ivy league executive MBA program such as IE Brown. While no ivy league degree is a silver bullet to the executive level, it can give you an edge to better compete in specific candidate pools.
“A combination of strong/ivy league education, outstanding work experience/performance and the right leadership/soft skills make for an outstanding and highly desirable candidate.”
How did IE Brown prepare you to lead new initiatives at work?
“A program such as the IE Brown EMBA advances both your technical and soft skills and gives you that shot of adrenaline and inspiration you need to advance at your job. It will push you to dare more and apply your skills and strengths more creatively.”
What specifically about the program strengthened your ability to “dare more”?
“The intimate experience you have with your cohort and professors gives you the opportunity to take down your guard and take risks in a way that you might not on the job. Once you start thinking outside the box and become more comfortable in new settings and ways of thinking, it becomes a habit that you carry on in your actual day to day work.
“The IE Brown program is unique in that sense as they run small classes which allows for a more intense experience than other, similar programs.”
Given the importance recruiters place on work experience, do you see value in the IE Brown format that accommodates demanding work and family schedules?
“I always recommend people at advanced career stages not to take a sabbatical to complete a full time degree because ultimately executive recruiters judge candidates on their career performance during the last five to seven years. The advantage of IE Brown’s flexible online/residential format is that you can continue to push forward with your career while you pursue this degree.”
“I also want to emphasize the importance of completing an actual ‘degree’ versus a short certificate program. Certificate programs (with a few exceptions) do not usually provide the same immersion and depth of experience and are not regarded as official degrees. I counsel executive candidates not to over-market these or put them on their resume.”
As as a recruiter, I imagine your network is of high importance to you. How has IE Brown expanded and added value to your corporate network?
“One of the great advantages of the IE Brown Executive MBA is the acquisition of two high-powered professional networks from two top-ranked universities. The schools’ respective prominence varies in different markets and settings. For instance, Brown allows for immediate recognition in the US market while IE has a prominent brand in Latin America and Europe. The connections I’ve made from both universities have enriched my network tremendously.”
“The recent Brown Executive Alumni Summit exemplifies the type of networking and energizing experiences you get as an alumni of this program. The two-day summit had an interdisciplinary angle that gave me tremendous insight into subjects that are very ‘hot’ in the market and with my clients right now (i.e. cybersecurity, artificial intelligence…). I made some fascinating connections and look forward to future alumni events at both institutions.”