Marc started his career in the public sector, but quickly realized his lack of business skills while working for an American start-up in Paris. This experience was the catalyst in his decision to build a skillset that would allow him to advance in the private sector.
“My name is Marc Dimancescu and I graduated in the Class of 2003. I started my career off in Paris at UNESCO. I worked a couple of years there as a Communications expert- speech writing, website design, etc. I worked for the French government doing similar work and was then recruited by an American PR firm where I was a senior account executive working on a wide range of clients. Then, I moved into the whole start-up venture where I set up the Paris office of an American start-up. We actually invented what is now known as the Mobile Wallet. Unfortunately we were about 10 years ahead of our time. It was the best and worst experience professionally I’ve ever had. It made me distinctly aware of the lack of business experience I had but was also a very rich experience because I had no clue what I was doing and had to do everything on the fly. That’s really what led me to do an MBA.. the realization that I was missing a whole set of skills that I need if I want to take my career further in the private world.
I joined Syngenta 6 years ago as a regional marketing manager for Europe, Africa and the Middle East. I was responsible for promoting best practices in Marketing, ranging from segmentation, pricing, positioning, branding, channel management and would work with specific teams in countries and at the regional level to make sure marketing was done the best way possible. Three years ago, I was promoted to Head of Branding and Customer Insight for all of our commercial activities.
I want to say the MBA didn’t necessarily change my career but made me a more mature individual by having a much broader way of thinking about things and looking at business challenges on many different angles. It’s not just the details but first about the big picture. Being able to have a very clear structure around the thinking and to be able to understand multiple different disciplines and functions from supply chain to finance to marketing …
I’d say there is one professor in particular that made a huge impact on me, Jean-Noel Kapferer. I never studied marketing but always knew I was good at marketing. What he was able to do was take me from a position of where “I think I like marketing” to realizing “actually, I’m really good at marketing” and having confidence in it. Moreover, he was one of the most challenging professors I’ve ever had. He pushed me like no professor has ever pushed me before. Really pushed me to my limits of frustration and anger… but he got the best of me. In the end, despite his rigidity, he was very open to creativity and new ideas and really encouraged us to think outside the box. So, if there’s one professor I had to call out, it’d definitely be him. He was a true inspiration to get me truly into marketing."