Broaden your horizons with EMBA: an Alumnus Success Story

Interview with Marina Tavecchio, Duferco SA, Lugano

Tell us a little about yourself

I have attended Liceo Scientifico and graduated with a degree in Business and Economics from Bocconi University, Milan, Italy. I also hold an Executive MBA from USI Università della Svizzera italiana. After 5 years in a consultancy firm in Milan, Italy, I joined the leading steel trading company Duferco SA, based in Lugano, Switzerland and belonging to the DITH Group, where I am currently the Head of Trading Administration & Control, General Accounting, Accounts Receivable, Accounts Payable Departments and responsible for currency risk management and auditors’ relationship. I am a member of the Board of Managers of Duferco Celik Ticaret Limited in Sirketi, Turkey, and a member of the Advisory Board of ATG Deutschland GmbH in Germany, both subsidiaries of DITH Group.

Tell us a little about your professional background?

My first job after graduation was in the consultancy firm Ernst & Young, Milan, Italy. I then joined Altoprofilo SPA, a consultancy firm, where I was project manager. Two and a half years later I joined Duferco SA, Switzerland, as member of the Administration and Control Group, and then became head of the Trading Administration & Control Department, where I still work today.
Why did you decide to attend the USI EMBA program?

I decided to attend an EMBA because I wanted to update and strengthen my knowledge in business and administration. Among the available EMBA programs I chose the USI’s EMBA mainly for two reasons: it is taught in English and the number of participants is small in comparison to other programs, allowing a one-to-one relationship with the teacher.

How has the EMBA changed your perspective at work? How has it changed your career?

I feel more open-minded, I approach problems with a wider perspective and I have enlarged my competences in different fields useful for my job such as finance and management. I’m now able to evaluate investment opportunities and to better analyze financial statements, I’ve learned how to participate in a board of directors and provide valuable input, as well as how to manage teams and how to manage business relations. Such skills allowed me to be nominated as member of the board of newly acquired companies and to actively participate in due diligence processes on new acquisition targets. My job is now more interesting and I deal with new and stimulating projects.

What is the most important skill you feel you have learned/developed during the EMBA?

I have learned many valuable skills, it is difficult to say which one is the most important. Business evaluation (business plans, investments’ evaluations, EVA, NPV, IRR…), organizational behavior, and statistical methods for risk assessment are the ones that I use most often, but also negotiation and group interaction are important soft skills I have developed.

Would you recommend the program to others and why?

Yes, I recommend the program. It is stimulating and allows a continuous exchange of opinions among the participants, thanks to class discussions and group projects, as well as with teachers. This is mainly due to the limited number of participants and the availability of teachers. The program covers all the main topics of business and administration and offers the possibility to customize the learning program by choosing the elective courses.

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