Please briefly outline chronologically your professional career path?
Before studying at IÉSEG, I did a Bachelor in Business Management at the University College of Ghent, in Belgium. At the end of this program (March 2017), I did an internship for 3 months at BMW Belgium Luxembourg in the Sales department.
After the internship, I felt the need to study one extra year in order to familiarize myself with international business, so I joined the MSc in International Business at IÉSEG, Lille campus.
For my MIB internship, I was a business analyst in a boutique consulting firm in Kortrijk (Courtrai), Belgium. After this internship, I started my career in Audit. Since November 2018, I have been working as a Financial Auditor for VGD. VGD is part of Nexia International (a global network of independent accounting and consulting firms). My responsibilities are the following:
- Performing risk analyses and control programs
- Conducting on-site audit programs to review the customer’s annual accounts
- Writing accompanying concluding reports
- Assisting in the preparation of consolidated financial statements, IFRS consolidations, periodic financial reporting, etc.
How did opportunities offered at IÉSEG help you in terms of your career?
For me personally, IÉSEG’s Talent program was a very useful opportunity. We had the chance to have one-week classes about how to give professional presentations, how to write an attractive resume and how to prepare for an (online) interview. Of course, besides this Talent program, we had networking sessions on a regular basis and presentations from professionals (mostly IÉSEG alumni) talking about their corporate experience and professional life. At the end of my studies at IÉSEG, I went to a job fair in Luxembourg to which IÉSEG students were invited, and I networked with top consulting companies like McKinsey & Company, PwC, Deloitte and many more.
Are you in touch with the members of your class and how important is the IÉSEG alumni network?
When the program ended, my fellow students went in different directions. Some moved to Asia, others to Latin America or stayed in Europe. Some of us have a Whatsapp group where we regularly post some pictures or talk about work or how wonderful our time was in Lille.
The IÉSEG alumni network is a great chance for everybody who wants to meet new people living in every part of the world. It is unbelievable how many countries are represented in this “club”. I am sure that if I had the plan to relocate from Belgium to another country, I would always have someone to talk with about the country of my interest.
How important is the international dimension in your current job?
Almost all of my clients are Belgian firms who are active internationally. This means that it is a must to have an understanding of international business and trade. Junior Auditors don’t generally need to travel a lot abroad, as this is more the job for Senior Auditors or managers. This is another reason for working hard and moving up the ladder at work!