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WHU MBA Alumna Maximiliane Heidenblut and Her Career Leap to New York

The MBA graduate and the power of an international perspective.

“Based on my experience I believe the more exposure you have to different segments within your industry or different functions early in your career, the more well-rounded your professional profile will be. So be bold, make that career move, and step out of your comfort zone. You may question your decision at times but it will ultimately be rewarding.”

Dynamic, intelligent, and successful – Maxi is a motivated individual who shifted her career focus from asset management in Frankfurt with J.P. Morgan, to an international role in New York with global investment giant BlackRock. Maxi’s career accelerated thanks to her own determination and boldness, but also the confidence and support gained from the WHU MBA Program.

“With every change you make, the more you grow.”

Maxi began her career as a sales graduate with J.P. Morgan and quickly discovered that WHU was one of the preferred universities for graduate progression, not only for J.P. Morgan, but also across the industry including other big names. “It was clear that WHU was high up in the ranks for these companies,” she explains. “I also met many people completing their internships at J.P. Morgan who graduated from WHU, so I had some personal insights. I visited the campus, researched some more, and I found that the international elements of the program really appealed to me.”

“The reputation, the recognition, the brand, and the network – these were all important factors when choosing WHU.”

Joining the program in 2012, Maxi already had a background in business but was keen to progress in her career. “You learn a lot of new and valuable skills whilst gaining exposure to different people and topics at WHU. Personal and professional development was very important to me, which is a large component of the program. Then there is the tremendous network WHU has, the usefulness of which should not be underestimated. Even here in New York, the network has been a great help to me.”

“Looking back, joining the WHU MBA Program was one of the best decisions I ever made.”

“I was really looking forward to starting the MBA: studying again, doing assignments, attending class. None of it was a shock after full-time employment as I enjoyed every minute. The only shock was going back to a student income! When I returned to work, I was pleased to see that my salary actually increased quite quickly.”

Moving to BlackRock in 2015 as a Key Account Manager, Maxi found that while she was flourishing with the career development opportunities offered to her within the company office based in Frankfurt, she was ready for the next big step. “My career in Germany was going really well but I felt that to move forward within an American company, it made sense to spend some time abroad.” Actively looking for opportunities within the firm in the US, Maxi finally learned a year later about an opportunity in the New York office. “It was a thorough and extensive interview process, but I got the role.”

“Changing location helps you to grow faster than any other experience.”

After three years with BlackRock in Germany, Maxi made the move to New York. “It’s a huge city - things are just done differently here. People move faster and it can be hard to make connections. You really have to be a self-starter and promote yourself, which isn’t a common skill among Germans!”

While the first few months were tough due to a demanding new role and experiencing a culture shock, she recognizes that the experience itself has accelerated her growth like no other. “The growth I have experienced here is second to none. I was leaving my comfort zone in Germany but it was the right decision.”

“The MBA Program helped me get to where I am today...”

After a year in New York and settled into her neighborhood and role as Director at BlackRock, Maxi looks back on her time with the WHU MBA Program fondly and reveals that she utilizes the WHU network regularly since graduating in 2013. “I reach out to people in the network for guidance or opinions, depending on what is on my mind. The WHU network is always happy to help, whether its alumni or accessing the Career Center. I feel supported by the network and I’ve never been disappointed. While I think it’s part of my personality to be curious and open to exploring new opportunities, the program definitely helped me to be more confident in my choices. It’s helped me get to where I am today – it’s part of my story.”

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