Career Spotlights: Mag. Alexandra Steiner, MBA, Continental Automotive Austria

Today in conversation with Mag. Alexandra Steiner, MBA, an alumna of the Professional MBA Automotive Industry. She participated in the class 2013-2015 and is now the Head of Sales & Portfolio, Continental Automotive Austria GmbH.

Why did you decide to participate in this program?
My former boss was part of the first cycle of PMBA Automotive Industry and I thought it might be a good program to complement my academic education and sharpen my view towards the automotive industry.

On what topics did the Master program put the focus on?
It wasn’t so much as focused on only one or two area/s but a well thought through composition of complementing courses. From basics like Finance (Controlling and Accounting) and Management (Managerial Economics and Management Science), to legal aspects, over very automotive shaped lectures like Automotive Technology and Automotive Production and Logistics.

What did you expect from the program? Have your expectations been met?
As I was more or less aware what to expect due to the experience of my former supervisor, my expectations were met. Basically one can expect to get a broad view on areas that are important if you are or want to lead business in the automotive industry. It is a very good completion of skill sets, especially if you have a technical educational background.

How did the master program influence your professional life?
Well, since the program was scheduled from Thursday to Sunday basically once a month – the effect on the personal life was not that drastic. If you add the homework and studying effort it surely effects your personal habits and also your family duties but in a manageable way – so far as to my experience.

How did you benefit from the program personally? (Networking, management of relationships)
Personally, it was one of the most remarkable experiences so far. I had to chance to work with some very great minds and got to exchange with and learn from them during the period of all-in-all 2 years. That is not only in regards to my fellow students but more so to the program directors, lecturers and people we got to know on field trips.

Do you have any advice for our future students?
Go for it! Enjoy the ride and pour your heart and soul in it – it will be rewarded on the one or the other level.

What comes to your mind when you think about the program? What were the highlights?
In the full awareness of the risk to repeat my valedictorian speech – the socializing with the team after class.
In all seriousness – the highlight was the first course of accounting which was deemed to be very challenging, which it was. It was the most intense nevertheless rewarding experience – as strange as it sounds. Also most of the field trips are still in my mind.

Can you apply your knowledge on an international level?
Most certainly yes. Since the program did offer international aspects in most of the courses it generated know-how on a broad basis.

Did the program enhance your international career or did it open the door to an international career?
If you are being offered career steps it is seldom based on only one reason but multiple factors that come into play. For my point I can only say that the experience of the PMBA program shaped my focus on what I want to achieve in my professional life and this determination helps you to become visible in some ways.

Women and Technology – how was your qualification accepted on the labor market? 
Eagerness to learn and understand things that might alienate you in the first moment. 

(Interview dtd: July 6, 2017)

The Professional MBA Automotive Industry starts on October 19, 2017 for nineth time. For more Information visit the Webpage: automotive.tuwien.ac.at or contact the program team automotive(at)tuwien.ac.at.



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