MFM Challenges

Sunday, 22 December 2013, 20:48 | Category : Masters
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Dear readers,

Let’s talk about the deep dive challenge, a typical Vlerick Business school experience as it is a real life case and it requires a pragmatic approach. Our deep dive challenge was about forming a strategy for one of the big banks of Belgium.

We started off on Thursday morning and we had to give a presentation to several of the senior members of the bank the next day in the afternoon, so time management was of essence. Even more so, since we had the Morgan Stanley mergers and acquisitions game on Friday morning, but more on that later. Firstly, we got a presentation regarding the current situation of the bank from the CFO. Secondly, we had to split off in groups and analysed the current situation and what potential each of their markets have. It was a challenge with few available information and a lot of room for creative thinking. It was challenging and frustrating at times to find some data and to move to a next step. However the end results of every group were at a very high level. Although, the groups were competing, it does not have an impact on our class atmosphere as you can see in the picture below. We still have a lot of pleasure while doing these challenges. This photo was taken at 2am by the way.

Masters in Financial Management 2014

At the presentations we could see the different approaches of each group. Some used a more strategic management approach, like PESTEL, while others used a more quantitative approach. Some even took the threat of Google and its Google Wallet into account. After the deep dive challenge we celebrated the hard work of those two days at the bar of Vlerick Business School.

But let’s go back to Friday morning and the Morgan Stanley M&A game. Here we learned from several Morgan Stanley investment bankers how they do deals. The business game focused on the negotiating part of a deal, where we had to come to an agreement or not. Compromising, hard-selling techniques, psychology and quick calculations were in order to reach an agreement. Afterwards, we had to present this to the shareholders of the firm (played by the investor bankers). Here we got feedback on how well we did… or not.

As you might see by now, “work hard, play hard” is more than just a song.

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