George Pakos , GU Group

Managing Director and partner, GU Group

George, chose to study MSc International Management (now MSc Management) at Exeter due to its prestige and ideal environment for studying. He is now the Managing Director and partner at GU Group, a top mobile marketing agency.

Before studying for my Masters, I held various part-time positions, whilst doing my bachelor’s degree. In particular, I worked in a boutique investment agency as a Junior Consultant, then undertook a year internship at a digital marketing agency.

I choose to study here for a number of reasons, Exeter’s is a very prestigious university with a longstanding academic reputation and is highly ranked in a multitude of rankings. Secondly, the curriculum aligned well with my employment objectives. In addition, the tuition fees and cost of living are very reasonable in comparison to other universities making studying for a Masters programme more manageable. The city and the campus are lovely places to study and socialize, Exeter enjoys a much warmer climate than other places in the UK. It is a cosy, green city which makes settling in and getting familiar with your surroundings much easier.

Undoubtedly, my Masters was extremely helpful to my professional journey and the demanding structure highlighted the importance of punctuality and discipline, to maintain a high level of professionalism. Today, I am the Managing Director and partner of one of the top mobile marketing agencies, GU Group. We design Reward schemes, Interactive Games and Services on behalf of mobile operators across the globe.

The international feel of my Masters programme was an incredibly valuable experience. Respecting and acknowledging cultural differences is a must for undertaking international business. To my surprise, I could explore these values from day one, as all my classmates and friends originated from different countries, religions, habits, and customs, similarly to my clients, partners and end customers. This opportunity was enhanced by modules such as “Global context of Business”, which served as the Bible for unlocking & exploring a new markets.

I would definitely recommend a Masters at Exeter. The University offers a well-structured academic environment and curriculum, located in a beautiful city. A winning combination for building up your skills in an enjoyable daily routine. Everyone is aware that the University of Exeter is “probably the best University in the world”! All jokes aside, the University’s high standards, regardless of the course you pick, have been demonstrated by high rankings over recent years.

The advice I would give to people who are thinking of studying here would be to enjoy it! Enjoy the insights, the process, the course, living in a new city, making new friends. It is a life experience and you need to make the most of it.

In the future, I plan to visit Exeter with my wife (also an Exeter Alumna), and two daughters! Additionally, I aim to maintain GU Group as a top company in our field. My goal is to constantly over perform, deliver added value and shape the future of our industry as a leader ought to. Proceeding from a career of 15 years in the same industry, I aim to further capitalize on my experiences, leverage, network and reputation to lead GU Group in the years to come. Parallel to the above, social responsibility, expressed either personally or through my company, is constantly growing among my priorities.

My advice on succeeding in the workplace would be to remember that the definition of success is subjective. Self-balance and self-fulfilment are of major importance, and each person has different limits, dreams and expectations. In my experience, the world lacks accountable professionals. Therefore, I believe this rare soft skill of accountability to be priceless, both for being employable and certainly for succeeding in the workplace.

If I had to sum up my experience of studying at Exeter it would be: Unique, Priceless, Cherished and Instructional.