Talk with the expert

RBS International experiences

Isrid Van Geuns

Broaden your horizons, open your mind to new thinking methods. Assuming different point of views often leads to the creation of new opportunities. At Rome Business School we usually offer the chance to get to know different realities and learning methods, from new campuses and cities to the cultures of the places that they belong to. During the academic year, we organize numerous international exchanges and activities between students, lectures and staff, contributing to the development of transversal skills, optimally assessed by multinational companies and employers, increasing the job offers and opportunities of all the students involved in international activities.

Our last international experience has been the Study Tour organized with the girls from the MBA in Luxury and Brand Management ofthe ESSEC Business School in Paris. Thanks to the event we got as well the chance to collaborate with many professionals from the fashion industry and the occasion to collect their opinion on one of the most proficient industry in the world: the one of Fashion.

Naming, Branding and Corporate guidelines for Fashion and Luxury

Branding and Naming in the fashion industry are two fundamental aspects of this international market. Isrid Van Genus our lecturer of fashion – tech, influenceer media, merchandising, fabrics and new material, shows and events knows it very well.

“My intrinsic driver is to help others to think in new, exciting and inclusive ways. I-pull my energy by connecting people, ideas and expertise or inventing an innovative way to address entrepreneurial current challenges. This is why I loved to contribute with the International Study Tour from the 14th to the 18th of September 2020, which was organized by Rome Business School and dedicated to “Exploring the Italian Fashion & Luxury Brands”. 

Your future awaits

“My 6th sense and warm interest for talent and what people moves, has always been my compass in growing as a person and as a business. By having learned so much about myself through these interactions and the importance of this self knowledge for career opportunities, I decided to slightly shift the subject of the class. I felt I needed to dedicate the presentation to the students and to their future and so we talked about Personal Branding and Future Guidelines for Fashion & Luxury. I researched and designed the presentation in hot subjects and future domains to guide the students on zooming in and out on the current dynamics in the fashion and luxury industry and how this reflects on them. What will be your position and brand in the fashion industry? It is not only what you learn and all the information you have gathered. What is your talent and competence and which contribution can you gice to the fashion eco system?” 

The Fashion & Luxury Industry nowadays

I can tell you one thing, working in fashion and luxury is just great, but especially now and in the near future, it is going to be tough. If there’s one industry in which change is needed, it is fashion & luxury. So I challenged the group to deeply think about what role they would like to have in supporting this change. Personally, I feel one of the main reasons that the fashion industry is in so much trouble could be that we isolated ourselves from other minds and industries and forgot to put human and sustainability first. As life and work will be ever changing we always need to be kind to ourselves. In a world of uncertainties, the certainty you work with is you, to know what you are worth and to keep asking yourself questions. I shared a quote that is created on the building of the Willem de Kooning Academy ( Rotterdam ) that inspired me to always stay true and connected to myself and the possibilities of change: “I have to change, to stay the same.” So I kicked-off by sharing my story and business path, as an illustration and example of how I dealt, struggled and innovated through changes in the industry, in the macro economy and in my work and in my personal live. This personal approach created a warm and open connection with the group.

Key subjects of the class

Naming, Branding and Corporate guidelines for Fashion and Luxury

Empowered with this energy, we discussed the current state of fashion and the key subjects that are influencing and changing the industry and who are also inter linked with each other. These movements influence and change the one and the other.

Business versus amateur: This item presented two domains, the giants who are mainly in the industry for investment, profit and data and on the other hand people who are defined by trendwatcher Lidewij Edelkoort as amateurs; the ones who are in it for the love of fashion and who dedicate their time and work to develop new ways of creating fashion. We looked at video’s of 3D designer Iris van Herpen, my interview with Digital Design House ‘The Fabricant’ and an interview with Suzanne Lee, the founder of Bio Couture, growing clothes from living materials.

Data and Technology: I presented an overview of technology transformations and trends throughout the whole design and production chain. Then we looked at the 5 key trends in tech and I showed 3 video’s of how data, Augmented and Mixed Reality are innovating the industry and are presenting us with a whole new way of merchandising, distribution and working together. 

The future of work and jobs positions: We looked at a traditional organigram, which is top-down and a capability hierarchy. It creates execution, order and control. A-new and more innovative set up for a company would be to work in an agile organigram which focusses more on customers, creating adaptability, speed and innovation. In these structures we can work in so called scrum-teams of different disciplines and speciality. I also presented a list of the top 5 jobs that fashion and luxury companies are hiring for and we could see that they are all linked to data and technology.

Eco-systems and networks: This was my wake-up call for the power of being connected, for co-creation and being part of networks. The importance for knowing and developing your own talents, competences, story and even your personal brand, in order to contribute to the business eco-system. However small, own a subject, be a thought-leader. Welcome to your future!

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