Undoubtedly my greatest fear when I quit my job to pursue this market research program was whether I would be able to find such a job upon graduation. I must admit this fear continues to plague me while I am currently undergoing my program. Needless to mention not a week goes by that I don’t end up worrying about it to some extent, pondering what is going to happen next. May be this is the price I am paying for getting on that plane to Madrid!! However, in this short span of time I have also realised that living in Madrid is on of the most beautiful and thrilling experiences of my life.
After coming to Madrid, I quickly got accustomed to the current sentiment towards the bearish economy. Ironically, the first person who I made friends with upon my arrival was an expat, also living away from home and he enlightened me with the fact that a very dependable feature of people like him (expats) was, they usually find themselves huddled in bars and restaurants conversing not just about their families back home, but also mulling over about what the future has in store for them. Quite scary init?!?!
No lagniappes for guessing but everyone from co-students, school administration, career management centres, ex-colleagues have the same advice to start speaking to people as soon as possible. I do not want to sound skeptic but given the turbulent times our generation is going through I can feel the sense of urgency in all their advice.
Having said that, before I moved to Spain I had decided, “I am going to make this party worth the hangover”!! Now I know its not going to be easy….I call it mid-life crisis and its understandable we have all been there!
My decision of coming to IE was a calculated step basis a lot of thinking and consideration. For the last 2 years I kept waiting to decide, but it only made me think “What if??” Eventually, I made up mind and decided to come to IE…now let me clarify…coming to IE was not the reason for the constant delay, rather the fear ‘if it’s the right time to make a shift’ was?
So what brings me to MRCB ?
Well, I personally believe that, the marketing function continues to evolve and the ideal skill set today includes a combination of statistical acumen and a sharp understanding of general business and marketing strategy. As marketing shifts from a product focused to a customer centric approach, it is imperative as marketer to have a deeper than ever understanding of the consumers preferences and needs.
It is pretty evident that professional jobs are rapidly being disaggregated and becoming increasingly specialised and while I do believe that management of the marketing mix will continue to be overseen by marketers trained in business, this trend towards specialisation is creating new opportunities for professionals with focal training in the area of market research and the closely related area of consumer behaviour.
Anyways all the pep-talk aside what eventually matters for all of us, is where you end up after graduating?
To make it a lot easier for me I have set some rules when it comes to finding a job!
– I will dare apply for a job for which I am not qualified. All roles have a criterion for a reason, and it is apparent one shouldn’t apply for a gig that asks for a decade of upper level management experience when ones only gig has been fidgeting with spreadsheets for pocket money!! Abort! You’re only wasting your time.
– Never be afraid to ask for help. If you have someone in your family, a friend or know someone at a professional level who has excelled in his/her career offer to buy them lunch and get some worldly advice. Remember to avoid behaving as if you want to steal insider information and take it easy!
– Be ballsy and don’t be afraid to ask for a meeting, but also be respectful when their schedules just don’t allow for mentoring.
I know its not going to come easy and its going to take a lot of hard work and never-ending persistence and hunger and drive and a whole lot of other synonyms…but isn’t it meant to be that way?…nothing in life comes easy….And if it does? It’s probably too good to be true!!
What I will do after my graduation remains a mystery but I strongly believe, “The Will of god will never take you where the grace of god wont protect you”
Ankush Solanki, Master in Research and Consumer Behavior Graduate