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Natcha’s MBA makes international working a breeze

Natcha’s MBA makes international working a breeze

When Natcha Khiangprakhong started her full-time MBA at Vlerick in September 2018, her goal was to expand her career options by adding business knowledge to her legal expertise.

And she has done just that. Natcha now works in Luxembourg as a legal officer – and her firm’s clients are real estate investment funds.

She says: “The clients I work with use lots of technical business language so my MBA knowledge really helps. I can also read and understand financial statements, which is very useful.”

But the skill Natcha finds most valuable in her role is her ability to work with people from different backgrounds.

“For me it’s the most important thing I gained from the MBA,” she says. “I work in a very international firm – but I was already used to this environment from Vlerick. I had experiences to draw on. It helps with our clients too – they’re based all over Europe and have their own ways of working.”

Challenging herself, growing her skills

This wasn’t something that came easy to Natcha when she first arrived at Vlerick.

She says: “Working in groups was hard for me. Most of my colleagues had business and engineering backgrounds, but I had limited maths knowledge. I had to get to a certain level before I could share my ideas confidently. But of course, this became much easier as the programme went on.”

My overall experience of the MBA was that it’s intensive, international and hands-on,” says Natcha. “The programme has a strong curriculum and the faculty and academic team have great reputations. I learned a lot and I expanded my network. You really do get to know people from everywhere on the MBA.”

Gaining practical, real-life experience

One of Natcha’s highlights was her ICP at a pharmaceutical company, where she worked closely with the marketing team.

“I had zero experience of the industry, so it was really interesting,” she says. “Our objective was to find out why customers chose to buy each product. We worked with the marketing team but also involved the sales team who were based all over the world. So I was able to use the experience I had of working with people from different cultures.

“By getting their perspectives, we identified that customers in different regions buy the same products for different reasons – which was valuable information for the marketing team. The whole MBA is hands-on. But the project was a great way to apply the theory we covered in class. It was a definite highlight.”

Paving the way for a bright future

Natcha believes the Vlerick MBA is about more than gaining knowledge. It prepares you for real life – and to work at a higher level.

She says: “Yes I have the business knowledge to add to my legal experience. But it’s more than that. On the MBA you find out who you are. You spend time thinking about yourself and your goals and what you’re passionate about. I’m much more self-aware now. It’s an intensive year – physically and mentally. So the sessions where you talk about how everything’s going are really helpful. You get the tools to solve problems and progress – and these apply to everyday life.”

For now, Natcha has decided to stay in the legal profession. “I’m happy in my current role,” she says. “But I’m open to exploring different opportunities in the future. And when I do, I’ll have the skills from my MBA to help me succeed.”

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