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manon abaziou
Manon Abaziou

Talent Acquisition Specialist, Climb

Hello, my name is Manon Abaziou and I would like to tell you about my career. From the European high school to my higher education studies at EM Normandie, I met people who changed my life. My passion for the international scene is certainly a consequence of my sociability. Today it is still a common thread in my life. I will also tell you about my job, HR, and my transition from a consulting firm to a start-up. Enjoy your listening!    

International from high school

I decided to go to the European school in Villers-Cotterêts, which allows me to study several modern languages. I chose English, German and Spanish. The fact that I was in a boarding school meant that I could live in real immersion. For example, we had language assistants who lived with us and practised foreign languages with the students on a daily basis.

In this school, there was also a European section which allowed for some subjects to be taught in English. I chose to have history classes taught in English. In total, we had between 6 and 7 hours of foreign languages per week.

It's also a school that encourages a lot of extracurricular activities. I played rugby at some level and also did theatre. I have been involved throughout my studies in various activities.

I think it's interesting from a young age to be associated with people from different cultures. You realise that your prism and your vision of things is not necessarily the same everywhere. During adolescence, we tend to be self-centred and this opens our minds a lot. One of our assistants was Mexican and explained to us how lucky we were to be in this environment. 

Cultivating an openness to others and the world

This experience has greatly conditioned my current career in the field of recruitment because you learn to take an interest in others and to listen to their problems. I think it is essential in today's world to be able to put yourself in other people's shoes, even if you don't always do it.

I have always had career ambitions from a very young age. Choosing this school opened up the field of possibilities and prepared me for higher education. It also allowed me to meet people who share the same aspirations as me. This collective emulation was very important.

The international aspect is almost a consequence of my sociability because I like contact a lot. Learning foreign languages seemed essential to me in order to be able to go abroad easily. This ability to exchange with others remains a common thread in my career.

The first steps at EM Normandie

In my final year of high school, like many students, I had a lot of questions about my future. We are still young at this stage and we are not very well informed about the possibilities of study. I was more interested in long-term studies such as a Master's degree. I was very interested in economics and history, but I wasn't planning on a specific career.

The preparatory class seemed too academic to me. I was more interested in versatility and professional practice during my studies. This is how I started to prepare for the business school exams. I was lucky enough to pass the written exams of all the schools and then I went to the Caen campus to take my oral exams. 

I had a great day at EM Normandie. I was welcomed by the staff and I exchanged a lot with them in a really simple and natural way. I had a positive feeling and knew that if I was accepted, I would go to this school. It wasn't the closest to my home, but it was a question of feeling.

Discovering your path

I discovered the field of human resources late in life. Before that, I was involved in various projects, in particular the third-year "promotion project", which consisted of relaying the School at trade fairs. Our team had to explain to candidates the interest of joining EM Normandie. I also took part in the "Global Village" project which supervised the School's Erasmus students. Through this, I developed my sense of contact, my ability to listen and to work on a presentation speech.

After my two years of work experience, I realised that working in a large group did not suit me. I find that there is little autonomy, a lot of process and a strong hierarchy. I especially like being in action and seeing the end result of my work.

I was contacted by several recruitment agencies that were looking for new employees. The HR sector has been recruiting a lot for a few years now. I had interviews with LEA Partners, which wanted to develop its practice and create a new subsidiary for interim recruitment in accounting and finance. 

This project had a double interest for me, on the one hand the creation of a new structure and on the other hand the discovery of a new profession. I told myself that it was the right time to launch myself just after my studies because I had the right to make a mistake and had no other commitments. I don't regret this choice at all!

Moving from a recruitment agency to a start-up

I work in a start-up called Climb, which currently has 50 employees. Our objective is to help individuals manage their personal finances.

When I left the recruitment firm, I left the commercial part to concentrate on the strategic part by working with the managers on building teams and processes. The experience in a recruitment agency is extremely formative because recruitment is very similar to sales, even if it is rarely perceived as such. You have to be able to sound out the expectations of the prospect, manager or candidate, and satisfy them.

By joining a company that has its own HR department, I get a more long-term vision and create a link with the people I recruit. I accompany them during their trial period and follow them throughout their development.

I also work on other issues such as relations with schools, a subject that is close to my heart. I still have links with EM Normandie and am creating links with other schools. I like to share my experience with students and understand their expectations, which have already evolved over the last 5 years. As a recruiter, it is important to know how to adapt to different populations and to understand what we can bring as a company.

A constant commitment to EM Normandie

I have been very corporate from the start compared to many of my fellow students. From the first year, I was part of the promotion project and participated in the open doors. I remember five very good years at this school, probably among the best years of my life!

I met many of my friends during my studies. The courses and projects provided me with the knowledge base I have today. To continue this adventure, I wanted to keep in touch with people but also meet new ones.

I am part of the EM Normandie Alumni Board of Directors. I was contacted at the time of the call for applications and told that it might be interesting to apply. I called my friends for the general assembly, they were nice and voted for me! Our goal in the Board is to support the growth of the school and its network by creating links and meeting the expectations of students and graduates. Our network around the world is very powerful as we have over 20,000 alumni.

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