An MBA or M.Sc. is a door opener to higher management. Companies appreciate the professional and personal development of graduates. Against this background we can say that the probability to be successful and happy in the long run is significantly higher if people follow their passion. This is where HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management’s Career Service comes in and helps uncover one’s passion. Martina Beermann, Director of Career Development and Advisory Board Member of the German Society of Human Resources Management, explains the demand-oriented approach to support part-time students at HHL.
Ms. Beermann, what does the Career Service at HHL stand for?
It is our goal to enable not only promising but also fulfilling careers. If somebody wants to be successful and happy we recommend starting with a self-assessment, which we offer from day one of the program. The Career Service is much more than just a “CV checker“, i.e. consultation on the written CV. Our goal is to begin a dialogue and to take stock of students’ authentic career goals in case those have not yet been clarified. During the next step we look at how to achieve these goals. In addition, our alumni benefit from the HHL Career Service lifelong if they want to use its services.
“As HHL’s Career Service provided me with relevant contacts and documentation, I was able to approach my new employer early on and prepare for my job interview in the best possible way. Thanks to extensive and high-quality consultation, I could decide more quickly that a career in business consulting is what is right for me. The pleasant personal conversations with the Director of the HHL Career Service as well as the exchange with HHL graduates, who already work at consulting firms, during the on-campus recruiting events provided me with helpful inside knowledge.”
Theresa Walbrach, part-time MBA student at HHL, Associate Consultant at goetzpartners Management Consultants GmbH
“The HHL career service is really supportive and available at any time. With work experience of more than six years, I still had questions concerning topics like salary and application procedures. HHL‘s career service helped me to upgrade my CV. When my class realized that there are topics of interest for many students, the career service organized a workshop for us. We for instance discussed about how to use social platforms to build up a network relevant for our jobs. I really appreciate the support of the HHL career service.”
Madeleine Miertsch-Rulf, part-time M.Sc. student at HHL, Internal Commercial Auditor at Unister
What methodology is being applied?
On the one hand, we work with systematic, job-related personality questionnaires. The tools, which were developed by renowned career advisors, aim to lead students to their own answers.
In addition, we offer personal session and individual coaching. A new offer is the digital career platform Jobteaser from Paris, which is already being used by various other business schools. Jobteaser is a job exchange platform, which also provides information on companies, their fields of activity, and career events, and it is also a center for knowledge about career topics. Students can download documents online, amongst other things sample CVs and advice on wage negotiations. In addition, Jobteaser has the function of a talent database. If people upload their CV and provide their fields of interest, companies have access to these and job offers can be matched more quickly.
Since this year’s fall, we also have the New Leipzig Talents program which is organized in cooperation with Prof. Dr. Timo Meynhardt, Chairholder of the Dr. Arend Oetker Chair of Business Psychology and Leadership at HHL. Part-time students in their first term can apply for three sessions with a coach as well. The focus here is on skills development and the development of one’s own high-grade network.
What is VMock, which is another new instrument as of 2017?
VMock is an online tool which was developed in the USA and will be introduced at the beginning of 2017. It scans CVs on the basis of big data analysis, offers automatized suggestions for improvement and provides a result. If this reaches a minimum of 75 percent, an invitation for a personal session in the Career Service is sent. The aim is to use the time in these sessions with students for strategic topics and avoid having to start with the basic structure of the CV.
How is the consultation with the Career Development Department especially for part-time students (MBA, M.Sc.) being implemented?
That mainly depends on the student’s own initiative. Our credo is: We enable students to manage their career autonomously and therefore offer them help to help themselves. On principle, it all starts with a questionnaire to clarify individual goals. Afterwards, we define the focus. The consultations are often carried out through Skype as many part-time students are not located in Leipzig. Questions such as: Should I change my job?, I am unsure about career options within my company – How can I clarify that?, How do I conquer the hidden job market?, How can I accelerate my career?, How do I get information about a specific industry? are being discussed. Especially for the last question, we always try to involve contacts from our alumni network, too.
Thank you very much for the interview, Ms. Beermann.
HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management is organized both in the Career Service Netzwerk Deutschland e.V. (CSND) and the MBA Career Services & Employer Alliance (MBACSEA).