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EMBA students take on business challenges in Vietnam

Cass students travelled to Vietnam for International Consultancy Week

Over 50 Cass Executive MBA students flew out to Vietnam in early September for their International Consultancy Week.

International Consultancy Week marks an important point in the two year EMBA where students apply skills they've learnt throughout the course to unfamiliar international business environments.

Students spent a week in Hanoi, where they worked together to create improvement recommendations for 11 host Vietnamese companies.

After a welcome dinner overlooking the spectacular Hoan Kiem Lake, they set to work in teams to solve their clients' business problems.

The groups were partnered with diverse host companies that ranged from recent start-ups to some of Vietnam's largest service providers.

These included one of the biggest carton manufacturing companies in North Vietnam, a major wholesaler of agricultural products and food to schools, hospitals and supermarkets, and the country's premiere luxury fashion retailer.

vietnam hats

One project group was challenged with designing training programmes to differentiate products and services for one of Vietnam's largest bank securities firms.

Another group helped establish a payroll infrastructure and staff management tools in a not for profit social enterprise that teaches employment skills to disadvantaged teenagers.

Simon Cooper, EMBA student, commented on the trip, "The emerging market Vietnam consultancy elective really lived up to its billing as a core part of the Cass EMBA. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to put into practice the skills we've learnt over the last 18 months, to work with a diverse Cass class group and a range of companies across all industries."

"Vietnam has one of the most complex and challenging business environments in which to test our MBA skills. The language barrier was testing and we spent long days at the factory we were working with but it was an excellent opportunity to learn to work in different management cultures."

When not working on their projects, students took time off to enjoy a traditional cyclo tour of the historical sites of Hanoi and tried Vietnamese street food, including fried scorpions for the adventurous.

They also attended a formal networking event with the British Business Group Vietnam, hosted at the British Ambassador's Residence.

"The MEMBA's had an extremely successful and rewarding week in Hanoi." said Professor Peter Fleming, Course Director of the EMBA programme, "They consulted a wide range of Vietnamese and international firms, and developed important business skills related to emerging markets. All of the firms were very pleased with the insights the cohort delivered this year. A wonderful week all round."

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