“The emlyon EMBA gave me confidence in myself and the desire to innovate in my business”

“Transforming your career path and giving you the keys to lead in a constantly evolving environment” This is the goal of the Executive MBA training, delivered by the emlyon business school of Lyon, Paris and Casablanca. At the master’s level (RNCP level 7), this twenty-month program is intended for senior executives, managers or entrepreneurs, who wish to bring a new vision and innovative solutions to their company.

Nathalie Marical, administrative and financial director of Eras Ingénierie (Engie Solutions France Group), and Fabien Fayard, general manager of Tecofi, attended this continuing training course in 2020 and 2021. They look back on this enriching experience from a professional and human.

What were your respective backgrounds prior to taking the Executive MBA course at emlyon business school?

Nathalie Marical : I started my career as a management controller after business school. I then evolved towards functions with more responsibilities, in an environment of PMI-ETI specialized in services for industry: manager of management control, administrative and financial manager to get to that of CFO that I have held since 2019. Hence the question the continuing education program was born and my company agreed to finance it.

Fabien Fayard : My background is more atypical: I took an LLCE license to become an English teacher, then I went to Australia for a year. Upon my return, I started working in a water treatment company as a sales representative. Then, 13 years ago, I was recruited as a sales assistant by Tecofi, a faucet manufacturer. I climbed the ladder one by one: sedentary sales rep, itinerant, manager France, manager France-Europe, sales manager. Seeing that my boss was about to retire, I told myself that in order to position myself among the candidates for his succession, I had to undergo a training course.

Why did you choose this particular program?

FF : I first approached emlyon for reasons of proximity, as my company is located in the region and the training taking place in Ecully. But also because it is a renowned and prestigious school. In particular, I had good work experience with a work-study emlyon student for whom I was the tutor. I thought this training was both an opportunity to deepen my knowledge on finance-related topics, both supply chainimprove my employability and increase my chances of getting the job I was looking for.

NM : The EMBA met my expectations because it was complementary to my initial training and allowed me to return to the page on all areas of the company that have evolved: CSR issues, digital marketing, strategy … I wanted to discover new tools , new methods. I also wanted to progress on issues related to management and leadership. Living in Lyon, I naturally went to knock on emlyon’s door. But this closeness must not obscure the international dimension of the school, because we have been lucky enough to have teachers from all over the world.

What has this training brought you on a personal level?

FF : I rediscovered teamwork. In our professions, the more skills and knowledge we acquire, the less we mistakenly think we need others and the more we isolate ourselves. For lack of time and for reasons of efficiency, we commit ourselves, we do the work, often alone. The EMBA training gave us time to stop, to take our heads off the wheel and to work with others, to organize ourselves brainstorming. Today I think I am more attentive and work more with my teams.

NM: I agree with Fabien: this training has allowed us to meet people. It is interesting to discuss with colleagues who do not come from the same sectors of activity but who often face the same problems as ours. This allows us to share our solutions and bring another perspective. We had great cohesion! emlyon was really interested in meeting the needs of the attendees. I was a delegate for my promotion and I could see that the school was very concerned about what all the students were thinking. Especially since the period was not easy, because, two months after the start of the lessons, we were confined. The school was able to adapt very quickly and to provide all courses remotely.

And on a professional level?

NM: The training allowed me to reassure myself that I was not on the wrong path. It also allowed me to relativize some issues related to team leadership or change management. It allows you to approach subjects in a different way, putting them in perspective.

FF: Today I can say that I can read a balance sheet! I had a lot of gaps on the financial side. Now I pay more attention to the financial strength of my clients, the training has opened the doors for me, it has given me a knowledge base that I did not have during my studies. When you do literature, you don’t do PESTEL analysis! We also learned how to set up scenarios to anticipate moments of uncertainty that any company may face. The EMBA gave me self-confidence and made me want to innovate, to try new things, without being afraid of making mistakes.

How does your company also benefit from this training?

FF: My graduation thesis takes the form of a roadmap for my business that I have been launching since January 2022. It includes my vision of the company’s positioning in 2030. In this thesis, I address seven main themes that I have shared with all of them. my teams. The EMBA is a training course that I would gladly offer to a colleague of mine today if the need arises.

NM : I am part of the CODIR and I share with all its members the teachings of emlyon that seem relevant to them. I reminded them what a vision, an ambition, a mission was, this allowed us to clarify the definition of our strategy. I also reproduced leadership and management exercises, seen in training, with the members of the CODIR but also with my team.

Every day I bring a different perspective, I wonder more from training. Sharing with colleagues from other backgrounds allows you to stay in contact with an external network, which enriches both the employee and the company. We are driving a renaissance in company practices and these training courses are an amazing resource for retaining employees and attracting new ones!

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