Having completed P0, everyone gathers on the INSEAD Fontainebleau Campus in September to begin the programme. Your first few days will consist of welcome celebrations, teambuilding and cultural awareness activities, and then it will be time to dive into the first study Period P1, consisting of eight weeks, three Core Courses, a Workshop and a Practical.
Here's what to expect in P1:
"When our group presented our findings, the feedback was really good and our ideas might actually be implemented!"
“I learnt a lot in P1, mostly in Financial Accounting, because I hadn’t done that before. Marketing was also enlightening! Coming from an engineering background, you might think it should be rather simple, but it turned out to be surprisingly complex and there are many things to consider when drawing up a marketing plan.
Data Analysis was initially quite easy for me, but we quickly dove into regression and machine learning and it became more challenging.
The Practical was two weeks of hard work. Every day we had a different teacher coming in with lots of hands-on exercises. We got to use a really cool software and applied the knowledge gained from Marketing and Financial Accounting, as well as R for data analysis. We also had to do a case for a real company, to help them improve their product creation process using new technologies. When our group presented our findings, the feedback was really good and our ideas might actually be implemented! That was a great feeling.”
"My tip for future students: Don’t leave any assignment or revision till the last minute!"
“For me, the best part about P1 was the thrill of discovering INSEAD. Everything was new, you’re meeting a lot of new people, exploring a new place and figuring out how things work.
Financial Accounting was pretty heavy and I was impressed by how the professor managed to teach us everything we need to know within 15 sessions. Even more amazing were all the real-life examples given for every single aspect of Financial Accounting!
Once a week, you have the option to attend a tutorial to recap what was taught and to make sure nobody is left behind. Even for someone like me who already has a background in finance, I would definitely recommend to attend the tutorials because you can never get enough practice and insights.
Marketing used a lot of real-life case studies which was super helpful for the Practical as well. The Practical itself and company presentations give you a glimpse into real-life work scenarios. If you’re planning to go into marketing, this is going to be extremely applicable.
My tip for future students: Don’t leave any assignment or revision till the last minute! The pace is really intense and you have to work hard to stay on top of things, so do make this a priority.”
"I’m amazed how close our MIM community has grown in such a short time."
BSc, International Management and Modern Languages
“Like at any business school, at INSEAD, there is a lot of emphasis on group work. But what I found really unique is that we have a ‘home group’ with whom we did all of the P1 courses and will continue to come back to for one course each in the subsequent periods. So this is about building a very strong and long-term relationship which is different from what I have experienced in my previous studies.
I feel very lucky because my group gets on very well, but there is also the initial challenge of finding ways to work together efficiently so this is something that needs to be managed carefully.
One of my favourite P1 memories was right in the first week, when we stood outside having coffee with some classmates and happened to meet some Executive MBA participants who were on campus for their module. They were so friendly and interested in getting to know us, and even asked if they could help us in any way!
I’m also amazed how close our MIM community has grown in such a short time. There are so many initiatives going on and clubs being formed – whatever idea you have, there will always be someone coming forward to support you.”
"It is all about getting out of your comfort zone, learning to navigate ambiguity and working together as a team."
“What I found really interesting about P1 was working with my home group. Everyone in the group has a different background and perspective, and going through the various courses and projects it was interesting to see how we could combine our strengths to succeed.
This allowed us to take on leadership roles in projects where we had previous experience and learn from our peers in the ones where we had none. Instead of everyone looking out only for their own advantage, at INSEAD the motto is ‘How can we succeed together as a team?’
It was also great to see how seriously the school is treating the Practical. We had very senior alumni coming in who work in executive positions in multi-national companies. It was immensely satisfying to see that they really wanted to hear what we had to say about their businesses. They were taking notes and asking for our slides for future company presentations, this goes a long way in explaining the type of relationships you can build during these intense two weeks. The added pressure that comes with presenting to executives made the whole experience very unique and the feedback all the more valuable.
I would say the Practical was even more challenging than the core courses, because the pace was very intense and we were working late into the nights. But to future students I would say: Relax! Don’t worry if your answers aren’t perfect, because there is no perfect answer anyway. It is all about getting out of your comfort zone, learning to navigate ambiguity and working together as a team.”