Manuel Duboe

Manuel Duboe

Manuel Duboe

Nationality: Argentinian/British
Programme: Executive MBA, 2013
Pre-MBA: Creative Director, The Brand Union, London, UK
Post-MBA: Founder and Creative Director, Finally, London, UK
Current industry: Marketing/PR

When I started my Executive MBA, I was working as a Creative Director for a design and advertising agency in London. However, my working and studying schedules weren’t aligning so I decided to freelance for a few months. Soon after I decided to start my own business and the timing was perfect as I could apply the theories learnt in class to the reality of building a business from scratch.

I love and thrive in most academic environments and I believe that it is important to stay active by learning and challenging yourself. When deciding upon Cass, I saw that they provided everything I needed from both a facility and faculty perspective. As my background was in creativity and design, I also wanted to attend a school with its strengths in finance and business so that I could round out my skill set.

Another deciding factor was being the recipient of the Cass Dean's Scholarship. This not only helped me financially, but also strengthened my already positive impression of Cass. They understood the value of somebody with a unique profile and industry experience could bring to the cohort. I am deeply grateful that Cass gave me the opportunity to undertake the Executive MBA.

While the core modules allowed me to learn skills in areas I had no previous experience such as finance, I knew those modules would not dictate my career path. As I had recently started my own business, the entrepreneurship electives influenced me the most. In particular, I enjoyed New Venture Creation and being able to hear entrepreneurial guest speakers share their challenges and successes.

My International Consultancy project was for a creative agency in my hometown of Buenos Aires. It could not have been a better match as I could relate to their issues and doubts, many of which I had thought about prior to starting the EMBA. During the project, I was able to apply the theory directly to the agency and it helped me to crystalise the knowledge gained in class.

I used my Business Mastery Project as an opportunity to create a business plan for a real project, which my company was trying to launch. It forced me to consider certain elements that I had not previously addressed.  While we did not end up launching, having an opportunity to combine business theories and building a solid plan with world-leading faculty was an amazing experience.

By virtue of being at Cass, I was able to expand my professional network substantially. After graduation, I had close business contacts and prospective clients at firms ranging from pharmaceuticals to finance. I tapped into a handful of these contacts for my business ventures which has added value to my experience at Cass.

I recently started my own design and creative communications consultancy, Finally. Last year, I wrote and launched a book about how to turn ideas into reality, be it starting up a new venture or moving forward with change, called “Enough Talk! Just Do”.

The Executive MBA gave me a lot of confidence, business acumen and focus. Especially for someone that knew very little about business, it made me realise that I can do whatever I put my mind to.