MBA Recruiter Interview: Bieke Teerlinck, Anheuser-Busch InBEV | TopMBA.com

MBA Recruiter Interview: Bieke Teerlinck, Anheuser-Busch InBEV

By Nicole Willson

Updated April 23, 2015 Updated April 23, 2015

Anheuser Busch InBev (aka AB InBev, ranked 68th on the Universum Ideal MBA Employer List, has a portfolio of 200 beer brands, making it the world’s largest brewer. This global beverage giant employs over 150,000 people in 24 countries. We spoke to AB InBev’s global director, talent attraction and retention, Bieke Teerlinck, on the MBA recruitment process and what the company looks for in new hires.

Anheuser-Busch InBev is ranked 68th on the Universum Ideal MBA Employer Ranking. Why do you think your company is a popular employer with MBAs?

As our site puts it, “Our Global MBA Program is the path to a high-achieving leadership career with real-world experience in a variety of environments, exposure to every aspect of our industry and the opportunity to take on diverse roles. Our GMBAs become a pivotal player in a quick-moving, time-sensitive, competitive sector, within an organization that's growing rapidly. It's a place where the future will be defined by you.”

What do you look for in MBA candidates?

We're looking for cultural fit – this is key. We are looking for ambitious team players who will take ownership of their responsibilities and will deliver results. We go beyond the technical skills; we want to know the whole person, their motivations, their drive. We want smart people with growth potential beyond their initial role, who are driven, competitive and that seek out challenges. We look for candidates who are thick-skinned, can adapt to changes seamlessly and who can connect with others. They should have a creative mind, with an analytical approach.

Could you please provide a brief overview of AB InBev's MBA recruitment process?

There are three stages of the selection process: the business case, structured interviews and final panel. The business case is an opportunity to test analytical skills and collaborative styles. After, there is a series of interviews with senior executives of the function of interest. The last stage is the final panel where MBAs are in front of a panel of c-suite and top-level executives. During this panel, candidates will be asked a series of challenging questions. This panel very much imitates the way we work and communicate: we challenge each other and give feedback in a candid, straight-forward and constructive manner. Please refer to this website for more information.

What is the Global MBA Program? Is that the main entry point for MBA hires at AB InBev?

The Global MBA Program is a 12-month, high-potential leadership program that hires MBAs into a specific business area with the long-term potential to move cross-functionally and geographically throughout their career with us.

The program begins with a one-week global induction at our Global Management office in New York City where MBAs meet with members of our senior leadership team. Here, MBAs are put into small groups and receive an ‘Innovation Challenge Project’. MBAs present this project at the capstone graduation week at the end of their first year with us.

Following this, our MBAs could join one of the following departments at any location in our six geographical Zones:

  • Marketing
  • Innovation
  • Finance
  • Supply
  • Logistics
  • Sales
  • Procurement
  • Corporate Affairs
  • Technology
  • People (HR)

The program also offers two deep dives. A deep dive is a one-week in-depth training opportunity in sales, supply, operations or marketing in one of our geographic zones, giving MBAs an unparalleled insight into different areas of our business. Learning directly from some of our best will help them make strong professional connections and give them a well-rounded overview of the diverse group of people that make up our business. Throughout the program, MBAs will be assigned a mentor from the senior leadership team to advise and guide them.

What job are some common job roles for MBA graduates?

Marketing, finance, innovation, sales, logistics, procurement, corporate affairs, IT and people (HR) for both the MBA internship and MBA full-time program.

Which business schools do you recruit from and why?

We recruit at the top MBA programs in the US and worldwide. We had 44 interns globally last year.

This article was originally published in April 2015 .

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Written by

Nicole is the SEO manager of TopMBA.com, as well as a contributing author. She holds a BA in history and sociology, and a master's in library science. Aside from her work for QS, Nicole is a long-time contributing editor and administrator for WikiHow.

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