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IMC know-how for entrepreneurial world

After graduating from HTL Hollabrunn, Christian Haslinger studied Business Administration in the bachelor’s programme at IMC Krems and completed an exchange semester at the University of the West of England and an internship at General Electric Jenbacher. While working for a large management consultancy, Haslinger then enrolled in the master’s programme in Digital Business Innovation and Transformation. After internships and career stages in project management, he now works as a consultant, trainer and coach at procon Unternehmensberatung. His area of responsibility covers consulting and training in project and process management including agility and digital technologies – know-how from his IMC studies.

Porträt von Christian Haslinger

Christian Haslinger completed the bachelor degree programme in Business Administration and the part-time master degree programme in Digital Business Innovation and Transformation at IMC Krems. © Photo credit: Martin Hesz

What was the deciding factor for you to choose the bachelor’s degree programme in Business Administration?

The decisive factor was above all the possibility to specialise in International Project Management. The option to obtain the internationally recognised project management certification in accordance with IPMA (International Project Management Association) in the course of the degree programme also contributed to this decision. In addition, the balanced mix of courses such as finance and accounting, various teachings of law as well as business administration and economics was crucial.

Why did you decide to specialise in International Project Management?

I would describe myself as an analyst and problem solver, which lays a good foundation for a career in project management. It’s also a management skill that requires a high level of hard and soft skills. Mathematics, research, statistics, marketing, controlling/finance and much more are also important topics to be able to successfully manage projects. In addition, it gives you the opportunity to work in different sectors, be it IT, consulting, event management or other industries. And of course, the soft skills you need in project management are also important to me, such as stakeholder management, communication, rhetoric, decision-making and leadership skills.

What were the highlights of this study programme?

For me, there were three highlights in this programme: I felt comfortable in my cohort while I was studying, and fellow students became friends. Another highlight was my exchange semester in England. It was a great time – with cool parties, easy-going people and an interesting culture. I wouldn’t want to miss that experience. Finally, there was the Practical Training Semester at General Electric Jenbacher. I lived in a nice flat share in Innsbruck, surrounded by beautiful mountains, and learned a lot on the job. I was on the road for work, for example in Kiel or Bavaria at the BMW plants, and I wrote my bachelor’s thesis in cooperation with Jenbacher – which was a great opportunity to delve further into the topic of project risk management.

Why did you then decide to add a master’s degree in Digital Business Innovation & Transformation? 

It actually came about by chance. After my bachelor’s degree in June 2019, I took a gap year. I did an internship in Germany at Porsche Engineering in the field of project and process management. Back in Austria, I decided to get a taste of the world of management consulting. I immediately liked the huge company Accenture, especially because of its diversity, values and future orientation, the extremely strong representation in digital transformation in pretty much all areas, sectors and industries. I ended up in the Project Management Office and was able to convince my employer very soon in my internship, which brought me a permanent position. At the same time, I started looking for master’s programmes. Since I liked my work so much, only part-time degree programmes were worth considering. Accenture put me in the direction of digital innovation and transformation. The content and organisation of the master’s programme therefore met my requirements. Since I already knew IMC Krems very well from my bachelor’s programme, I didn’t have to think twice.

What did you like best about the master’s programme? 

What I liked best was the team spirit and the feeling of togetherness among the students. Above all, the willingness to help with project work and preparing for exams showed this. In terms of content, I was particularly interested in innovation topics, change management, agility, strategic management with a strong digital focus and risk management.

What did the training at IMC Krems do for your career?

Both programmes have enabled me to push and expand my own boundaries on several levels. General management competence, digital identity and also the strategic, organised and structured way of thinking help me immensely in my job and with the clients I have the privilege of supporting in consulting and training projects.

What is special about IMC Krems?

What is special is the high degree of internationality, despite its comparatively small size. The locations are wonderful places to impart and absorb knowledge. Krems generally suits me, it’s a really beautiful spot in Lower Austria. I also have to mention the great lecturers and helpful staff at IMC Krems – among the lecturers, there is a very good mix of full-blooded academics and practitioners from a wide range of domains.

Where do you see yourself in ten, fifteen years?

Basically, I have the vision to become self-employed in about ten years. I also already have a concrete idea of the direction I want to take. However, I am also someone who is open to more or less anything. So, I just move with the times and see what comes along. I don’t rule out a continuing career in consulting or industry, but my goal there would definitely be a managerial position. In any case, my values and views are important to me, and I definitely want to live them and pass them on. It is important to me that I leave a footprint, not a CO2 footprint, but a positive one for the general public – that includes humanity, nature and animals. That’s why topics like sustainability, future thinking, ethics and answers to philosophical principles are very important to me. No matter what happens, I hope to be able to unite these topics.

What would you advise a young person who wants to study at IMC Krems?

I would definitely advise taking advantage of the open days, researching on the website and possibly also taking a look at the Facebook group “IMC Krems – ask a student”. Here, everyone can ask questions – uncertainties will be cleared up and the decision for the right degree programme will be made easier. For a well-founded decision, it is important to obtain information from several sides. Nevertheless, I dare say that you definitely won’t make a wrong decision by studying at IMC Krems.


To the bachelor degree programme BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION


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