Delphine Veissiere Mont, PhD is Vice President of Business Development & Co-Founder at FinWedge, a regtech company based in Paris and Bordeaux. Delphine has attended numerous MIT Sloan Executive Education programs, both in-person and online, and is an Executive Certificate holder. We recently connected with her to learn more about her experience and takeaways.
What is your current role? What are some of your responsibilities in this role?
I currently work as a Vice President of Business Development for Finwedge, a financial software company I co-founded in Paris at the beginning of 2018. At the core of our business we help fund management organizations face emerging duties, report accounting obligations, and assess operational risks generated by their market activities. Most of our clients are exposed to the acceleration of technology, as well as more intensive regulation and cyber risks. Our software packages provide innovative solutions so that clients can develop their capabilities to acheive objectives, address uncertainty, and act with integrity. We operate in different sectors such as banks, insurance, and regulated industries. My responsibilities are mainly to define our corporate strategy implementing new components such as Artificial Intelligence and blockchain, and to diversify, at an international level, our client portfolio.
When you enrolled in your first program at MIT Sloan, what goals were you trying to achieve? Were your expectations met?
Firstly, I applied to the Entrepreneurship Development Program (EDP) in January 2018, to complete my entrepreneurial culture and mindset already developed through a past experience focused on marketing and innovation. My main goal was to understand how to create new, successful ventures beginning with a technology or an idea that could be enhanced to respond to customer needs. Since then, I have already completed an Executive Certificate in Strategy and Innovation, in which I selected modules that could help me respond to two main questions: Do we need to develop a platform even if most of our business is positioned on the business-to-business side? Can Artificial Intelligence help us to diversify our offer and develop a cost leadership solution for our clients? Overall, the program content combined a wide range of real-life examples and business cases that were really insightful. I have exceeded my expectations. At Finwedge, we are now working on these two items following professor Bill Aulet’s framework—24 steps to launching a startup. I hope to complete my overall executive education with an Advanced Certificate for Executives in Management, Innovation, & Technology (ACE), as well.
What and who have some of your favorite courses or professors been?
Digital Marketing and Social Media Analytics is my favourite course. MIT Professor Sinan Aral, who has developed an extraordinary amount of knowledge between science and practice, showed us how complexity in practice, through famous business cases such as Google and Uber, enriches theory. He gave us the insights to revolutionalize our own marketing best practices. He taught us about the good and bad news around marketing innovation using all existing digital devices. No matter what your business—B2B or B2C—all the added value points come from marketing causality and not through the traditional tools offered by correlations in marketing. Aral also explained how to target a business and get its relative positive network effects. I highly recommend this course to executives in all disciplines and industries.
What takeaways from the programs have you applied to your work?
Diversity in team building and the vision of technology innovation provided by the MIT professors are the main takeaways I can identify. The MIT approach is very different from other European universities and French engineering schools. We experienced a ton of business cases, methodologies, and operational frameworks … these modules were inspiring and really insightful. The theory is a plus, but not a prerequisite to do well as an entrepreneur or innovator.
How do MIT Sloan’s online programs compare to the live/on-campus programs?
Participating in online programs with MIT is far more convenient than regularly commuting to the Cambridge campus, especially when you live in France and you have your own family. I really enjoyed the Artificial Intelligence: Implications for Business Strategy program because of the quality of the written supports, videos, and interviews that you can hear on demand at home. It gave me the autonomy to organize my time and to assimilate the vocabulary and the contents provided. However, I generally learned more through the team work on campus than through online discussions. There are many participants in the online programs, and the diversity of languages can make those online discussions more challenging.
How did you find your peers? Have you made an connections that have persevered?
Before attending each module, I checked on the MIT Sloan page and connected through LinkedIn with the people I might be interested in meeting or working with during the case module sessions. I have a strong economic background, and I intended to interact with people who have a technical background, such as architects and software engineers. I am already in contact with many of them, but I must confess that the best group ever was in the EDP program, as we have built a project we are thinking about introducing in the real world.