Caleb K. Victor
Caleb first arrived in Lille from Chennai, India in 2007 to pursue his M.Sc. in Industrial Biotechnology Management in ISA (Higher Institute of Agriculture) of the Lille Catholic University. In 2008, he was a Quality Intern in Cadbury’s Science and Technology plant in Lille, where he created a Quality Management System and contributed to the company’s audit preparations.
Having been familiar with IESEG through “La Catho”, he chose to take the MIB Programme in 2009, and immediately after finishing the course, he found a position at Sodexo in Paris, which he keeps up to this day.
Hello Caleb, can you share why you chose the MIB Program in Lille?
Being a biologist I wanted to learn a little bit more about business in a short span of time. I found the MIB programme exactly suited my need and was also less of a constraint on my budget when compared to other similar programmes in France. Scholarship was very interesting. Studying in any country other than France was not an option. I could further choose 50% of the courses I wanted. Thus the MIB was perfect for me.
After finishing the course, are you satisfied, and what have you taken from this experience?
I am very satisfied with the courses as I got more than what I expected. I also got the opportunity to interact with amazing people from more than 15 countries and made friends whom I visit even now when I travel to their countries now. The IESEG network is good for those who have not taken up business or economics in their under graduation and are looking forward to understand how things work. It is definitely not a course to do as soon as you graduate from a degree. 2-3 years of work experience before doing an MIB is a very prudent idea.
Could you tell us about your current company and job?
I work for Sodexo, which is a Quality of Life integrator. Sodexo performs on-site service solutions, motivations solutions and personal and home solutions. I am an Operational Excellence Manager in the Integrated Facilities Management business for the International Large Accounts. Sodexo has numerous strategic clients from all sectors in 80 different countries. Sodexo is a people company with more than 400,000 people working for it. One of my key roles is in implementation of Global Operational Excellence initiatives various countries and industry sharing best practices among the countries. This makes the job very interesting and challenging. It is indeed a joy to work with different people and travel in-between many countries but sometimes being in 4 different countries in the same week is very demanding.
What are your future professional plans?
I intend to stay and grow with Operations at Sodexo as there is a large scope here. I believe that a ‘Rolling Stone Gathers no Moss’, so I do not intend to jump companies very quickly.
Can you share any unforgettable experience in Lille/ France?
Lille is my second home, as it is the first town I lived in away from my family. It will always be close to my heart. It is a nice city for students. Its central location helps travelling to different cities in Europe quiet easy. Numerous recreations are available in Lille; I was also a part of the Lille skating club for a year which I totally enjoyed.
What advice can you give to other international students who choose to follow the same path and intend to work in France?
Find out what you love the most and do that. MIB is intensive but after finishing it one still has many options. That is why it is important to define your needs and take courses which will help you to put your eggs in the right basket. To work in France, one has to speak French as it is the key prerequisite. It not only helps work in France but understand the culture better to get a full French experience.