MBA in Germany


jt161091
Dear all,

I am working as a Product Development engineer in an agro-chemical manufacturing company since 2.5 years. I have also worked in the oil & gas industry for 3.5 yrs. My overall work experience of 6 years is mainly technical (slightly techno-commercial).

I have applied to several MBA colleges in Germany as my aim is to become a strategic leader in a chemical/pharmaceutical company. I would want to work in Germany (for which I have already started learning German) but later on I would want to go to US/UK/Switzerland if I get a chance to work for an esteemed organisation there.

- Looking at my goals and past experience, which MBA college in Germany would be the best suited and why? (ESMT, Mannheim, FSFM, WHU, HHL or any other)
- As I mentioned that I want to stick to chemical/pharmaceutical industry, how conducive are the German business schools in achieving this feat? (for example, a strategic position in Bayer, BASF etc)
Dear all,

I am working as a Product Development engineer in an agro-chemical manufacturing company since 2.5 years. I have also worked in the oil & gas industry for 3.5 yrs. My overall work experience of 6 years is mainly technical (slightly techno-commercial).

I have applied to several MBA colleges in Germany as my aim is to become a strategic leader in a chemical/pharmaceutical company. I would want to work in Germany (for which I have already started learning German) but later on I would want to go to US/UK/Switzerland if I get a chance to work for an esteemed organisation there.

- Looking at my goals and past experience, which MBA college in Germany would be the best suited and why? (ESMT, Mannheim, FSFM, WHU, HHL or any other)
- As I mentioned that I want to stick to chemical/pharmaceutical industry, how conducive are the German business schools in achieving this feat? (for example, a strategic position in Bayer, BASF etc)
quote
Duncan
Take a look at the post linked from my profile page about using LinkedIn. You want to see which school has placed the most MBAs at those firms, and in particular international professionals.

In practice, the quality of your German matters more then the difference between these schools. Arguably HHL's 21 month option is the best fit since it gives you more time to improve your German. Unlike the big cities in West Germany, you'll also need to use your German more in Leipzig and thus develop your fluency.
Take a look at the post linked from my profile page about using LinkedIn. You want to see which school has placed the most MBAs at those firms, and in particular international professionals.

In practice, the quality of your German matters more then the difference between these schools. Arguably HHL's 21 month option is the best fit since it gives you more time to improve your German. Unlike the big cities in West Germany, you'll also need to use your German more in Leipzig and thus develop your fluency.
quote
laurie
Yes, for a job in Bayer or BASF you'd definitely need to speak fluent German. Depending on how your language skills are, you might want to take a year of intensive language study before starting the program. Even with a 21-month program, finding time to do the language courses necessary to gain fluency will be problematic.
Yes, for a job in Bayer or BASF you'd definitely need to speak fluent German. Depending on how your language skills are, you might want to take a year of intensive language study before starting the program. Even with a 21-month program, finding time to do the language courses necessary to gain fluency will be problematic.
quote
jt161091
Thanks a lot Duncan and Laurie.

So I guess it all boils down to language proficiency, when it comes to MBA in Germany.
And I have also heard that the MBA degree is not as recognised in Germany as in other countries. Hence, doing it from any of the mentioned clgs (except Mannheim) is almost the same kind of experience ?

Is it also a fact that internationals cannot climb far up the ladder in a German company irrespective of the college or the kind of MBA profile they have ?

Also, as Duncan suggested, I tried the LinkedIn method and was surprised that very few (almost none) of the FSFM, WHU, ESMT and even Mannheim Alumni work for these big giants like Bayer, BASF, Merck etc. Most internationals are working in IT department.

Is it next to impossible to get a strategic role in such big companies (for an expat) ? Ofcourse, I am not saying it will happen overnight but after years of consistent hardwork, good hold in German language etc.

Lastly, a very vague but broad question.
Which country in Europe is the best to study and work after doing an MBA ? Considering financial health, cost of living, job opportunities, language hurdles etc.
Thanks a lot Duncan and Laurie.

So I guess it all boils down to language proficiency, when it comes to MBA in Germany.
And I have also heard that the MBA degree is not as recognised in Germany as in other countries. Hence, doing it from any of the mentioned clgs (except Mannheim) is almost the same kind of experience ?

Is it also a fact that internationals cannot climb far up the ladder in a German company irrespective of the college or the kind of MBA profile they have ?

Also, as Duncan suggested, I tried the LinkedIn method and was surprised that very few (almost none) of the FSFM, WHU, ESMT and even Mannheim Alumni work for these big giants like Bayer, BASF, Merck etc. Most internationals are working in IT department.

Is it next to impossible to get a strategic role in such big companies (for an expat) ? Ofcourse, I am not saying it will happen overnight but after years of consistent hardwork, good hold in German language etc.

Lastly, a very vague but broad question.
Which country in Europe is the best to study and work after doing an MBA ? Considering financial health, cost of living, job opportunities, language hurdles etc.

quote
Duncan
I think this depends on the languages you speak. If English is the only European language you speak to a professional level, then the UK and Ireland are the obvious choices.
I think this depends on the languages you speak. If English is the only European language you speak to a professional level, then the UK and Ireland are the obvious choices.
quote
laurie

So I guess it all boils down to language proficiency, when it comes to MBA in Germany.
And I have also heard that the MBA degree is not as recognised in Germany as in other countries. Hence, doing it from any of the mentioned clgs (except Mannheim) is almost the same kind of experience ?

Is it also a fact that internationals cannot climb far up the ladder in a German company irrespective of the college or the kind of MBA profile they have ?

In most of the country's industries, for MBA-level jobs and above, yes, this tends to be true. You might be able to get lower-level, technically-oriented jobs with just an MBA and basic German skills, and then work your way up as your language level and connections improve. However, you probably don't need an MBA to do this. For best career growth, look at improving your German skills and then doing a German-language program (doesn't necessarily need to be an MBA, which doesn't carry the same 'weight' as in the UK and other English speaking countries.)

However, you'll note that the language situation is broadly true for any other country: in most management-level jobs, you'll usually need to have excellent knowledge of each country's native language. Maybe there are exceptions for certain multinational companies, but rarely.


Lastly, a very vague but broad question.
Which country in Europe is the best to study and work after doing an MBA ? Considering financial health, cost of living, job opportunities, language hurdles etc.

As Duncan noted it comes down to the language(s) you speak (at least for MBA-level jobs).
[quote]
So I guess it all boils down to language proficiency, when it comes to MBA in Germany.
And I have also heard that the MBA degree is not as recognised in Germany as in other countries. Hence, doing it from any of the mentioned clgs (except Mannheim) is almost the same kind of experience ?

Is it also a fact that internationals cannot climb far up the ladder in a German company irrespective of the college or the kind of MBA profile they have ?[/quote]
In most of the country's industries, for MBA-level jobs and above, yes, this tends to be true. You might be able to get lower-level, technically-oriented jobs with just an MBA and basic German skills, and then work your way up as your language level and connections improve. However, you probably don't need an MBA to do this. For best career growth, look at improving your German skills and then doing a German-language program (doesn't necessarily need to be an MBA, which doesn't carry the same 'weight' as in the UK and other English speaking countries.)

However, you'll note that the language situation is broadly true for any other country: in most management-level jobs, you'll usually need to have excellent knowledge of each country's native language. Maybe there are exceptions for certain multinational companies, but rarely.

[quote]
Lastly, a very vague but broad question.
Which country in Europe is the best to study and work after doing an MBA ? Considering financial health, cost of living, job opportunities, language hurdles etc.
[/quote]
As Duncan noted it comes down to the language(s) you speak (at least for MBA-level jobs).
quote

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