Current student Bruno Valle represented Kellogg this past weekend as Poets & Quants debuted its inaugural list of this year’s 50 best and brightest MBA graduates.
To compile the list, Poets & Quants surveyed 60 of the top-ranked full-time global MBA programs to find graduates who “exemplify the best of your school” as evidenced by academic prowess, leadership in extracurricular activities, personal excellence and striking personal narratives.
Valle certainly excels in all categories. He came from Brazil to Kellogg, where he served as the co-president of LAHIMA (Latin American, Hispanic and Iberian Management Association), and also held leadership roles with the Entrepreneurship Club and the Kellogg Student Association. He previously worked as a consultant at Bain & Company in São Paulo, Brazil, did his internship in private equity at Bain in Chicago, and will transition to Bain in Rio de Janeiro after graduation.
Poets & Quants posted Q&As with each of the “Best of the Class of 2015” students. Learn more about Valle and his Kellogg experience from his answers below.
Why did you choose this business school?
I chose Kellogg because its curriculum focuses strongly on the challenge behind driving growth in companies and organizations – my passions are new industries for which there is still no consensus on where they are going or how fast they are going to grow. Rapid growth can create unexpected challenges, and I knew that the school I chose would have to be focused on addressing those challenges: How do properly decide which customers to target using transaction data? How can you mitigate high working capital in positive cash conversion cycle companies? How do you design incentives for new managers [that] reward both their targets but also the growth of the whole company? These are the kinds of questions I find interesting, and Kellogg has allowed me to fully explore them.
Global Entrepreneurial Finance, Public Economics, International Finance and Managerial Leadership
Which academic or professional achievements are you most proud of?
One of the best academic experiences at Kellogg was taking advantage of the experiential learning curriculum to explore industries and topics that I am interested in. Through the New Venture Development class, I worked on starting an online marketplace with a team of classmates. It didn’t work out, but the experience of being coached by experienced entrepreneurs and current venture capitalists showed me what differentiates a successful business from a failed one. People spend a lot of time talking about the value of ideas, but Kellogg showed me that the details are where businesses are made – things like industry timing, sales effectiveness and ability to change directions.
What did you enjoy most about business school?
It’s hard to say since there are so many interesting things going on at once, but I would have to say it’s a split between the amazing people I’ve met and the leadership experience I’ve had by leading the Latin American, Hispanic and Iberian Management Association. About a year-and-a-half ago, the current team and I created a slate to become the new leaders of the group, and quickly went about designing a strategic plan, mission, vision and where we wanted the group to be in five years. We scheduled road show meetings with the deans and administration, created KPIs and individual responsibilities and leadership roles for each “division” (the organization has several sub-groups, such as admissions, alumni, marketing, social events etc.). It’s amazing to see how a dedicated and energized group of people can think of an idea and immediately set out to make it happen. I got really lucky to find people who were similarly committed to growing the organization, and I think we all learned a lot about what it takes to put an ambitious plan into action when you have limited funding, time and attention available.
What are your long-term professional goals?
I really like thinking about the future, and fast-growing industries that change quickly and impact life on global level – energy, technology, space, transportation, telecommunications – industries the entire world depends on and that are not linked to one specific region. We need more people who actively try to create the future instead of waiting for it to arrive. If I can focus my career on being one of those people, I’ll be pretty happy.