Fabiola Diaz Mier
“I don’t mind making a fool out of myself, if it means I learn something.”
Hometown: Veracruz, Mexico
Fun Fact About Yourself: I am a flamenco dancer, and through dancing I learned to stand in front of a crowd with confidence and to think on my feet.
Undergraduate School and Major: International Business at Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey.
Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Brand Manager at Danone
Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of the school’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? While researching schools, I spoke to a Rotman second year student and she described Rotman as a “self-improvement bootcamp”. I immediately connected with that idea and realized I wanted a school that was defined by more than the academic side of it. Rotman has a flexible program with incredible opportunities for growth and extracurricular activities. It has MBA majors, the self-development lab, clubs for any and every profile, the Rotman Design challenge – essentially everything you need to become not only a better professional, but a better person.
What club or activity excites you most at this school? It would be the Business Design Club because I find Business Design to be a tool that will help me make real changes in my professional career. I wish to stay in the CPG industry and through Business Design, I can bring in new ideas to help improve people’s lifestyles.
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: The re-launch of a brand at Danone, through the marriage of local ideas and our global team’s input.
What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? I felt my current professional experience had provided me with enough self-awareness that I could truly work on not only highlighting my strengths but also bettering my areas of improvement and acquiring new skills. Additionally, I had contact with supervisors and mentors and understood what really makes a true leader. I wish to grow to become a positive leader and a change catalyst withing organizations.
What other MBA programs did you apply to? Ivey Business School and Schulich School of Business
What was the most challenging question you were asked during the admissions process? How would you deal with a negative attitude from a classmate that is older and has more professional experience than you?
How did you determine your fit at various schools? I created a list of elements that were either a must or preferred. These elements were thought out according to the skills I had previously identified I wanted to work on. In order to understand if a school met these requirements, I found that the most useful approach was to reach out to alumni. Additionally, I believe that one must not be afraid to ask hard questions to the admissions team. It is equally important for the school to consider you a great candidate as it is for you to consider the school the right fit for you.
What was your defining moment and how did it prepare you for business school? My defining moment was when I was left completely alone to manage both of the brands where I am in charge. Because of various circumstances, both my supervisors and my trainee had to either leave the company or the brand. It was a true challenge of prioritization and a journey of self-awareness. This prepared me for business school in two ways. The first one being it gave me responsibilities that would have otherwise taken the company longer to give me. The second is it gave me a lot of exposure with top executives. This put me on the fast track for growth and made me feel I had more to bring to the table for the program and my classmates.
What is the most important attribute that you are seeking in an MBA employer and why is that so important? I would like an MBA employer to show true adaptability. This means adapting processes to meet the ever changing needs of both employees and consumers. Be willing to take risks in innovation in processes, product portfolio, communication strategy, etc.
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