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Michael Dunmore

Michael DunmoreHead of Employee Communication, Emperor

MA Marketing Management, 2001

What made you choose Middlesex University?

The location was a good travelling distance for evening study and I liked the course structure, content and availability of part-time study. Additionally my meetings with tutors were positive and informative.

What made you decide to study a masters degree?

The need for a career 'boost' which I thought would come from studying for a masters degree. I had an interest in gaining a deeper understanding of my chosen subject and work specialism: marketing.

What aspects of your masters degree did you enjoy most?

The subjects that provided significant learning in strategic aspects of marketing and which I still draw on every day at work, particularly: market research; corporate and marketing strategy; service marketing, communication strategy.

I also enjoyed the dissertation. It was a great learning experience that led to me writing a book on the selected topic. My tutor provided excellent and challenging support and it was great meeting other students and learning from their work experiences.

I thought the lecturers were friendly, accessible people who were always willing to answer questions and provide examples of the application of theory in the workplace.

Would you recommend postgraduate study to prospective students and if so what do you believe to be the key benefits of a masters degree?

Definitely. In short, the greater confidence, capabilities and opportunities that are created through learning and being encouraged to study in depth an area of interest through the dissertation are the benefits.

These greater capabilities and opportunities should also be reflected in improved remuneration.

How do you believe your masters degree has helped you professionally?

My masters proved transformational for me. My career has developed in an entirely new direction that I would not have been exposed to or been able to learn about – had it not been for the course and a truly brilliant tutor.

My masters degree also provided knowledge and ways of thinking that allow me to work with confidence and credibility as a strategic consultant with many types of organisations, including FTSE companies, and with a diverse range of people, including board directors.

What is your fondest memory of life at Middlesex?

Studying in the evening after a day at work could have been a low energy experience – but fellow students and lecturers always created energy and enthusiasm.

What one piece of advice would you give to a prospective student interested in studying at Middlesex?

Study a subject that inspires you. It's hard work, so be sure you study a subject where you will maintain your motivation for learning. You need to be curious and enjoy a challenge.

What made you choose the industry you work in and what are its pros and cons?

Working in an agency provides opportunities for working with a broad range of clients on a wide range of projects – with new challenges and learning for every project. It also gives me the opportunity to specialise in employee communication and engagement, which I find fascinating and which can make a positive contribution to how employees experience organisations and their day-to-day work.

But it's not all about delivery – working in an agency also means constantly winning new work with clients and prospective clients. This means dedicating a significant amount of time to business development and being very resilient; particularly when you do not win a pitch.

What has been your defining career break or highlight to date?

Moving from working within organisations to working in an agency. This has allowed me to gain exposure to the cultures and methods of multiple organisations.

What does the future hold for you?

Who can say? My aim is to build and lead a significant, growing and excellent in-house practice dedicated to employee communication and engagement.

What are the top three career tips you would give to current students and recent graduates?

Gain as much workplace experience as possible, and use this help to define individual direction, aspiration and inspiration – including the type of culture you want to work in.

Find a mentor, or sequence of mentors, as quickly as possible.

Consider a masters as an accelerator for your career aspirations.

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