IESE’s Summer Entrepreneurship Experience: The case of Cassian Stanjek (MBA ’22)

IESE´s Summer Entrepreneurship Experience (SEE) gives MBAs a chance to get real-world, hands-on learning on what it’s like to turn an idea into a business. We spoke with Cassian Stanjek (MBA ’22) who gave us some insights into his experiences of SEE 2021.

1. How did the SEE structure help you to launch your project?
The SEE structure gives a great framework for how to structure your launch.

2. What did you get from being mentored by IESE´s faculty?
We established an additional weekly check-in with them, which was very beneficial for us because we could address specific problems and challenges and get their insight from their experience. In addition, the weekly sessions were a good sounding board for us, and fellow students’ questions helped us to get an outsider’s perspective.

3. For you, what are the main benefits of the SEE?
The regular exchange among the students, the insights from the mentors, and spending one summer in Barcelona!

4. Why would you recommend the SEE to an MBA student?
The SEE program gives you the unique opportunity to focus your time on your business idea without the risk you would face at another stage in life. It is a perfect program for all budding entrepreneurs and students who want to gain more understanding about whether entrepreneurship is the right thing for them.

5. How does the SEE complete the training of the Fundamentals subject in the first year?
The Fundamentals course is more theoretical compared to the SEE program, where it is all about doing, and putting things into practice. By taking both, you get a good combination of both kinds of knowledge – the one you acquire by studying and the one you get by doing.

6. What do you think is a unique thing that the SEE can provide for a project like Vitana?
The playground to work on your idea in a structured manner, with peers and mentors around you.

7. What was for you the best of the SEE format? (The contacts, the sessions, the times…)
The contacts with Luis M. Cabiedes and Mauricio Prieto.

8. In the case of Vitana, in what part of the business did the SEE especially help you? (Logistics issues, business model, market implementation…)
We only worked on Vitana during the SEE, so the project was all about customer interviews, understanding your persona, etc. For this, the SEE was very helpful.

9. Why do you think Vitana was a project that fitted into the SEE?
It was a healthcare startup – which is a perfect topic for the SEE!

10. From your perspective, how should a first-year MBA student approach the SEE?
Talk to as many formers SEE participants as possible and think carefully whether you would rather spend your internship in the corporate world or on a project that addresses your dreams and your entrepreneurial heart.

11. What was the main difference in your project when it arrived at the SEE and when it left?
When we arrived, the project was just an idea. When we left, we had built a homepage, test products, marketing material, and a deep understanding of the industry, the clients, and the challenges of the sector.

12. What challenges are you facing now at Vitana?
We stopped the project after the SEE because, thanks to all our interviews, we figured out that the solution of truly personalized supplements was too “premium” for Spain.

Thanks Cassian!

Are you interested in finding out more about the SEE? Get in touch with us here.