Stories

1, 2, 3 …. Jump! Making drastic career change

3 recent MBAs tell how they switched function, sector and country

Triple Jump

Rahul Parikh, Daniela Bocco and Lukas Mitschke.

April 19, 2021

As if changing jobs wasn’t daunting enough, imagine switching function, sector and country all at once. This is what IESE’s Career Development Center calls “the triple jump,” and according to its director, Patrik Wallen, around a third of the MBA Class of 2020 took the leap. It’s not easy, and may become less so in a post-pandemic world. Still, being an international school helps make it happen. Here, three recent graduates tell their stories.


Daniela Bocco Targa

  1. Function & Company
    Before: Marketing Coordinator, WSP USA Inc.
    After: Algorithmic Sales Product Manager, AB InBev
  2. Sector
    Before: Construction & infrastructure
    After: Beverages
  3. Country
    Before: U.S.A.
    After: Mexico

I knew before I did my MBA that I wanted a big change. I was open-minded about it, and so when it came time for a summer internship, I reached out to startups via LinkedIn in a geography that was completely new to me (East Africa). Having IESE as part of my introduction helped, as did the exposure to and network with people from many industries and geographies that I got while at IESE.

The challenge with the triple jump is proving you have what it takes on three new fronts – demonstrating that you not only have the technical skills for your new function, but that you also understand the complexities of your new industry and geography. I’m not sure I would have been able to do it without IESE’s help.


Rahul Parikh

  1. Function & Company
    Before: Director, ECA
    After: Manager, Eater Growth, DiDi Food Sector
  2. Sector
    Before: Executive search & project staffing
    After: Food delivery platform
  3. Country
    Before: U.S.A.
    After: Mexico

Changing industry and geography were my top two priorities: I wanted to transition out of services and into consumer tech, and I wanted to find an opportunity outside the U.S. I was also interested in moving into marketing, but I didn’t think I could be as picky about that. It’s important to have it clear in your own mind your prioritization of industry, geography and functional area. This allows you to focus your recruiting and networking efforts appropriately. The IESE MBA definitely helped.

I wouldn’t have ended up where I am if it weren’t for IESE opening up new geographies and providing me paths to finding a job that I wouldn’t have considered otherwise. Once you’ve made the jump, ramping up can feel daunting, particularly if your peers have more prior experience that they can lean on. But the triple jump lets you catalyze a career change on multiple fronts in the short term, while allowing you to make more educated decisions about future career changes for your medium-to-long term.


Lukas Mitschke

  1. Function & Company
    Before: Senior Consultant, Deloitte
    After: Global Strategist, Samsung
  2. Sector
    Before: Consulting
    After: Electronics
  3. Country
    Before: Germany
    After: South Korea

I didn’t set out to make a triple jump. I was very happy with my professional and personal life before. At Deloitte, I had the opportunity to work with inspiring colleagues on our clients’ most challenging problems. And Munich, my home for more than 15 years, is ranked as one of the best places to live in the world.

But the IESE MBA opened doors to people and places in almost every corner of the world, it helped me navigate ambiguous environments, and it inspired me to embark on this journey  of discovery and lifelong  learning. Life is an adventure, and adventure is all about learning. Big changes provide a great opportunity to accelerate learning and fully experience the magnificence that life has to offer – but they also bring uncertainty. That’s why having the right toolkit and support network will give you the confidence you need to embrace those big changes.