My experiences as a chairman of Asset | IB&M
The past 9 months, I have had the amazing and honourable opportunity to be the chairman of Asset | International Business & Management. In this blogpost, I am very happy to tell you more about what has made this a great experience for me so far!
First, I will shortly introduce myself. My name is Timo Vugts, I am 21 years old, went on exchange to Hong Kong, and graduated from International Business Administration in June 2016. From September onwards, I will proceed with the prestigious Masters programme International Management / CEMS at Rotterdam School of Management, so the prospects are exciting!
My path at Asset | International Business & Management
When I started my studies I immediately had the urge to do something extra, basically to boost my CV. Therefore, I joined the Events committee of Asset, where I organized several events including a gala, the COdE beer cantus and the Asset Champions League. Thereafter, I did two formal committees, in the form of the Quest committee (a symposium with Shell and AkzoNobel), and the Consultancy Days (a three day event with 8 prestigious consultancy firms). I have to be honest and say, that my initial idea of Asset was that it was just a means by which I could improve my CV. And here I am, 3 years later, board member of Asset | International Business & Management.
Already during my first year at IB&M, I noticed that it is much more than just a boring association where you can join a committee and buy your summaries. On the contrary, it is a great platform to develop yourself, meet companies at career events, and meet like-minded IBA students who become your friends fairly fast. Being involved with IB&M for three years already, while organizing the Consultancy Days, I felt it was time for something bigger. Something which could help me develop my professional and personal skills in a more practical way, whereas university tends to teach us mostly on a theoretical basis. Therefore, I applied for the function of chairman at Asset | International Business & Management, and I am convinced it was a great decision!
When looking back at it now, I have to admit that I did not really know what to expect when I was voted to become the chairman during our Department’s Members Meeting. In the same week, I had the opportunity to talk to a full lecture room of Master students in International Management and explain them the opportunities within Asset | International Business & Management, and why it is important to exploit those. Roughly three weeks later, I had a lunch with the rector magnificus and the president of the executive board of Tilburg University, together with another board member. In this meeting we discussed our completely new policy, and examined where we could cooperate more with the executive board and Tilburg University in general. However, we were a little late due to the fact that we were not very experienced with fastening our ties, and immediately got a reprimand from the president. Lesson number one: When you meet with important people, make sure you wait for them instead of the other way around. Lesson number two: Learn how to fasten your tie quickly…
After those first few weeks, many more meetings and events took place of which I will highlight some. Before I knew it, my board members and I were representing our association towards recruiters of Nike, Johnson & Johnson and Shell during the International Career Event. The whole month of October, I was busy coordinating the Asset In-house Days, where 278 students participated and 13 companies were visited. In November, we organized the Consultancy Days in which amongst others Bain, McKinsey and Deloitte participated. Next, in December, another general board member and I finalized the extensive cooperation document in which the collaboration between Asset and Tilburg School of Economics and Management is described, and presented it to the management team of TiSEM. The agreements made have shown to provide a huge improvement regarding our collaboration and are now seen as a benchmark for all schools of Tilburg University.
Next to all those meetings and events, you also have the daily affairs to deal with. I think it is hard to explain what it exactly entails, but I believe the easiest way to explain it is to compare our association with a company. Basically, we have 6 full-time managers (the board), who coordinate 100+ part-time ‘employees’, who all organize various activities together with the rest of their committee (read: team), varying from 2 to 10 hours a week. As in any company, money flows in through various ways (sponsoring by companies, membership fees, companies joining events), and money flows out, ranging from small amounts like the promotion costs of a small event, to investments worth more than €10.000 euro, like a new website. Next to coordinating our active members, the board decides on and executes the policy and strategy of our association, just like in a company. Similar to the managers in a company, we as a board are dependent on the motivation and work of our members when it comes to successfully organizing events and executing our policy. That is why we organize social activities, as well as trainings and events, to give our members a great time and boost their personal development.
A week in the life of a chairman
To give you a better idea of what keeps me busy during the week, I attached a schedule of what my average week looks like. However, each week differs and brings something new, so it can vary a lot from time to time, and obviously there are numerous small tasks that cannot be incorporated in this schedule. I will explain some of the things in my schedule hereafter.
|Morning||Board meeting IB&M|
|Afternoon||Meeting with the career services officers of TiSEM + prepare chairmen meeting|
|Morning||Board meeting general board of Asset|
|Afternoon||Meeting SAM & Front to give input on university wide matters + meeting with the vice-dean of education of TiSEM about collaboration with Asset|
|Evening||Dinner with Alumni of International Management|
|Morning||Make Advisory Council agenda + follow up acquisition email|
|Afternoon||Career Development Day (several trainings)|
|Evening||Darts event IB&M|
|Morning||Meeting International Management Trip committee + brainstorm about Asset Member Card promotion|
|Afternoon||Meeting with the academic director of IBA about a new course + answer emails|
|Evening||Dinner and drinks with a friend|
As you can see, a regular week brings all kinds of meetings, tasks, and events. Each Monday morning I have a board meeting with the board of IB&M, where we discuss all current issues, update each other about how the committees are doing, check the budget, and inform each other about the developments within Asset general. Each Tuesday morning I meet with the general board of Asset, which consists of all chairmen of the departments plus one independent chairman. In this meeting we discuss the bigger topics within Asset and update each other about our portfolios, as each chairman is responsible for a specific field within Asset. Furthermore, my portfolio is the acquisition portfolio, which results in for instance the meeting with the career services officers of TiSEM, and the acquisition meeting, in which all externals of Asset come together and discuss any acquisition related affairs there are.
However, next to my regular meetings, for me the great thing about being in the board of an association like Asset is the fact that I can really be an entrepreneur within the organization. If I have an idea, I discuss it with our board to make it even better, and then get the money needed and execute it.
All in all, I believe that my board year has provided me uncountable learning experiences so far, and will for sure teach me many more. From leading a team to doing acquisition, from leading discussions to time management, from presenting myself in a better way to steering people the way you want them to go, for me my board year had it all. Therefore, I would like to end this article by expressing my gratefulness for the opportunity I got, and I am sure that it will boost my career in the near future.
I hope this article has given you a bit of a better insight in what it entails to be the chairman of Asset | International Business & Management. If you ever have any questions about my function or IB&M in general, please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.