Max Reichel
Max Reichel
Home Region

Munich, Germany

Undergrad Education

Queen's University and London School of Economics, 2004; Ludwig-Maximilians Universität, MA, Economics, 2006

Previous Experience

McKinsey & Co., Munich

HBS Activities

Boat Club co-president, Entrepreneur Club, European Club, Tech-Media Club

“HBS offers a uniquely international network.”

MMax Reichel's desire to gain a broader horizon stems from his school days. "I left home at 15 to finish my high school in Quebec. I wanted to see something else for a while. And after that I decided to stay a bit longer." After four years of school and university in North America, Max returned to Europe, finishing his bachelor's degree at the LSE and then a master's degree from the Ludwig-Maximilians Universität in Munich. "After 7 years living all over the place, I finally wanted to come back to Germany to apply want I had learned to business in my home country," he says.

Max did so during his years with McKinsey & Co. where he fulfilled assignments all over Germany, Sweden, and Russia. "Consulting was an excellent way to learn about various aspects of business by industry and by function," says Max. "McKinsey allowed me to understand dynamics in business between people and ideas."

Personal reflection and international perspectives

After his tenure at McKinsey, however, Max began to reflect on his career path. "I needed time to think about where I want to go," Max says, "and I wanted a new perspective from outside of Europe." HBS offered ample opportunities for both. "When I came to visit," says Max, "I was struck by the very different backgrounds of the students I met. Not just by country and careers, but also by ways of thinking and opinions held. Here, I knew I would challenge my perspectives and potentially expand my own beliefs of what is possible."

The case method creates a meaningful forum for these multiple perspectives. "After completing my master's, I didn't want to be lectured to for another two years," says Max. "At HBS, the professors don't just teach theory. They're actively engaged in challenging my assumptions, while enhancing my decision-making prowess under uncertainty. The cases are based on real-life business and ethical dilemmas that force me to formulate my opinions and defend them in the classroom. It's essential training for any leader who will make decisions in difficult situations."

The diversity of the student body not only improves the learning experience, but offers a practical benefit long after Max completes his MBA. "Being German," he says, "it's important for me to build a wide network with exceptional people from Europe, the United States, and all over the world. Thirty-three percent of 900 HBS students each year are international. HBS offers a uniquely international network compared to any other US school."

Making plans

Over the summer, Max will formalize a more professional ambition: "I'm working on a business plan for a consumer internet start-up," he says. Max will use his EC year to explore his plan even further "and determine whether it is something I'll do right after school, or whether I'll consult or work with a small start-up before going out on my own."