“I needed a strict timeframe”

Claus Hovmøller Jensen received a promotion after completing a CBS GEMBA in 2017. Here, he explains how the course boosted his career – and how its structure fitted in with his approach to learning.

I work for a real estate company that is developing 53 hectares of land in Copenhagen into a new city district. It’s a huge, ambitious undertaking, but the skills I developed with CBS have proved invaluable.

Corporate governance, in particular, has been very useful for me, as has the focus on leadership and on valuation. And at a more hands-on level, the ability to discuss, evaluate and interrogate financial reports has been critical.

I chose the Global Executive MBA because I was looking for a very high level of education. I knew that I was going to have to take time away from my family and, in a way, I wanted to study something that was going to be worth the sacrifice. I looked into several different kinds of education, spoke to my CEO, and decided that the CBS triple-accredited MBA would be the best possible option. It had a structure that could fit in with my life while providing me with the highest level of opportunity.

The on-site learning took place every six weeks, which was perfect for me. Also, studying the course in one go without the ability to delay suited me well as it drove me to keep up with the speed of learning. I studied over two years – let’s be honest, it was pretty intense – but the focus appealed to me. I didn’t want to be tempted to extend the course for a number of years, although there are others for whom that kind of flexibility [offered by the EMBA Executive Certificate route] might be appealing.

I had been working five or six years in my company and had handled a lot of contracts and negotiations along the way. But as soon as I started the course, I realised that I had so much to learn. It was a journey. Me and my classmates were all at the same sort of place in our lives, with similar ambitions and in similar situations, and we all worked with each other to achieve the qualification.

The company were very supportive. They gave me the opportunity to spend a day a week at home to do my studies and I could shuffle when I took that day according to my work commitments. When I was in Copenhagen studying, it would mean early starts and late finishes but I’d definitely recommend it. It has given me so many opportunities already.

Today, I have got the skills that can make a real difference to my company. I can make a tangible impact on our success and I believe I have become a more valuable employee. The course was tough, but it was very much worth it.

Plus, of course, I now have the support of my fellow graduates. We stay in touch and network with each other and I’m sure there will even be opportunities to do business together in future. All in all, it’s been a great experience.