Carlos Gutierrez (MBA ’06) a native of Honduras, made his way to the United States by obtaining a scholarship to attend Louisiana State University. He received a bachelor of science in international business and finance in 1996. After graduation, he wanted to be involved in international business and thought Miami would be a great place to find that opportunity.
Gutierrez’s search for opportunities led him to many learning experiences.
Gutierrez’s resume is a testament to the dot com industry. He had the ability to work for several startup companies, such as TresCom Telecommunications, Americatel Corporation, Cellit Technologies, and Vox2vox Communications, where he learned many different aspects of the business. He specialized in conceptualization, development, and implementation of comprehensive product development programs and zeroed in on market research and analysis. His interest in international business led him to work with Hispanic markets in the United States and in Latin América.
“Working for smaller companies offers excellent learning experiences,” Gutierrez said. “You get involved in different aspects of the business, and start-ups give you the ability to appreciate entrepreneurship at its highest levels.”
The opportunity to work for start-ups provided him with well-rounded, multifunctional business skills which he still leverages today as he relates and works across other functional areas within his organization.
“Start-ups are dynamic, and your work’s impact can be seen faster. To sum it up—they are high-energy and chaotic,” he said.
In 2003, Gutierrez moved to a larger and more mature company, Hertz International, where he was allowed to fine tune his skills as an analyst and a year later was promoted to senior analyst of international pricing and marketing for Latin América, Mexico, and the Caribbean. At Hertz, Gutierrez was responsible for retail rental operation revenues. He was able to increase and reflect solid growth percentages year after year.
Following seven years of work, Gutierrez said he thought having an MBA would be a great tool to enhance his array of professional experiences. The college’s Evening MBA fit his schedule and allowed him the flexibility to keep working while he pursued his degree.
He said that the college’s program was the logical choice because it is a great local school geared toward international business and boasts excellent credentials.
“I had many referrals from friends about the evening program, and once I enrolled, I quickly learned the professors were of great quality,” he said. “They combined their own experiences with academic study, which was conducive to amazing business discussions. The international point of view is crucial in a globalized world.”
The MBA experience was all worth it, he added, because he was able to advance his career as a consequence.
“A month after I finished my degree, I was offered a new job, a great opportunity within Chevron,” Gutierrez said. “It was higher up on the professional ladder than my previous job, and I received a pay increase of 80 percent.”
As the pricing manager for Latin América at Chevron, his role is to build awareness about the benefits of strategic pricing throughout the organization, developing and modeling pricing strategies that enhance margins while remaining competitive.
He analyzes consumers, costs, and competitive environments, all of which helps him identify key issues and conceptualize consumer behavior research, providing keen business insights for-long term profitability.
Gutierrez knows that he has become a better asset to his company by comppleting the MBA. And, he said, he plans to leave the door open to future educational experiences.