Building a career with the support of a powerful network
Alarico Allegri, Managing Director, Board of Directors, MRX Technologies, a Siemens Business (Australia)
People story: Alarico Allegri
From Italy to Perth and beyond
Alarico is a highly driven person who sets ambitious goals for himself, and reaches them in record time. At only 33 years old, he took the leap from Project Manager at Siemens Management Consulting to managing a company with over 150 employees – a direct result of his time at SMC, the projects he worked on and the network he built.
Like any global thinker, Alarico is always searching for new experiences, things to learn and connections to make – whether it’s flying to Cape Town for a weekend to attend a conference, starting a restaurant in France, or leaving a successful position in Germany to manage a company on the other side of the world.
His journey has been by no means a straight line. Born to Italian-Australian parents, Alarico grew up in a little village in Italy. As he approached adulthood, his hometown began to feel smaller and smaller: “I wanted to explore the world and discover different cultures.” He moved to Castellanza, just outside of Milan, to study business administration at the Università Cattaneo. Then he enrolled at Bocconi University, where he completed a Master of Science in Economics and became interested in consulting: “What got me into consulting was the diversity, not just the diversity of the job, but the diversity of the people.” When he graduated, he joined a renowned international strategy consultancy – a job that took him around the world and let him experience a range of different industries.
After seven successful years in external strategy consulting, Alarico was ready for a new challenge. When his sister asked him to join a culinary venture she was starting, he was intrigued. Together, they started the Italian restaurant Pucci in Nice, France. Alarico took care of the restaurant’s financial matters and its marketing activities – and Pucci soon became a hotspot for tourists and locals alike. In 2015, the TripAdvisor community chose Pucci as the fourth best pizzeria in France.
With the restaurant running successfully, Alarico decided to expand his academic horizons and get fresh perspectives on the future: “I always wanted to get an MBA. I saw great potential in working on a challenging topic, but most of all, I wanted to work with brilliant people from different industries and cultures.” He moved to Lausanne, Switzerland, and received his MBA from the IMD Business School in 2014.
At this point, Alarico knew the strategic world of consulting, but he had also learned about actually running a business at Pucci: “I was working in a world where you talk about 100 million-euro deals, and then I was discussing with my sister how to make two euros more on a main dish.” That not only kept him grounded, it also informed his future career direction: in his next role, he wanted to leverage his consulting skills, and ultimately work toward a business leadership position. In summary, he says, “I was searching for accountability and responsibility. I wanted to see things grow.”
I was searching for accountability and responsibility. I wanted to see things grow.”
A new start. A clear career path.
Siemens Management Consulting gave him this opportunity. When he joined SMC as a Senior Consultant, he knew he’d be able to build a career that would take him to a management position within Siemens. From the start, he says, “I was exposed to senior management. I never experienced a strict hierarchy.” He adds, “It was very demanding, but my superiors made it clear that they were there to help. SMC really feels like a unique world that allows us to deliver the best projects for Siemens.”
It wasn’t just the management he enjoyed working with. “The teams are usually quite small, and everyone is 100% dedicated to their job. You work with your team, you sweat with your team, you learn from your team.” Collaborating with passionate, driven people allowed him to complete some of his favorite projects: “I was working with Siemens management up to the Board level to understand and design the future of mobility. Where will it go? How do we stay competitive?”
He also worked on an ambitious project that could change the future of aeronautics: “Siemens has partnered with Airbus to develop a hybrid electric propulsion aircraft. It’s breaking records already and could transport up to 100 passengers in the future. I was part of the team that presented the proposal for the joint venture to the Siemens Board of Directors – and while I think I’m just a small contributor to this project, I feel like its impact will be huge.” He adds, “Projects like these have a strong influence, not only on Siemens, but on society in general. If we as Siemens decide to go in a certain direction, we can move the entire industry.”
A strong network: people, expertise and opportunities
Working on a wide range of challenging projects helped Alarico to grow an extended network within Siemens. “I had the chance to meet many people on different levels and in a variety of industries,” he says. “At Siemens you can reach out to a wide range of experts. You can get the latest insights from a healthcare specialist or share your ideas with an authority in the field of factory automation.” This internal network goes way beyond exchanging knowledge. A powerful community of SMC alumni helps Consultants to progress their careers. “You can approach them for advice, contacts or just insightful conversations. Many alumni know you, your skills and what you can deliver. They can put you in touch with the right people. It’s a big advantage to unlock new opportunities.”
Collaborating closely with customers, which is typical for SMC, constantly motivated Alarico and his team to go the extra mile: “We were always trying to find a way to complete a project successfully, no matter how big the challenges were. Because ultimately, it’s our company and we wanted to create long-lasting relationships with our clients, who are also our colleagues.” This work ethic, and the network he built, then opened a new door for him.
I was working with Siemens management up to Board level to understand and design the future of mobility. Where will it go? How do we stay competitive?
A new route: leadership beyond SMC
As his career at Siemens Management Consulting progressed, Alarico began to contemplate the next steps in his professional journey. “At the time, I was a Project Manager, and I was really happy at SMC,” he says. “So I wanted to plan how I could further grow my career. My aim was to eventually become a Vice President at Siemens Management Consulting.” He met with his Vice President for an in-depth conversation, and together, they discussed objectives, performance milestones and a road map that outlined how Alarico could reach his goal. But sometimes, he says, “Things don’t happen the way you plan them.”
Just one week after this meeting, one of Alarico’s clients called him out of the blue to discuss a new opportunity at MRX, a company that provides services and products for the rail industry and was about to be acquired by Siemens. “We stayed in contact after a project, and he saw the potential in me to take on the next challenge.” His client appreciated Alarico’s work so much, in fact, that Alarico was asked to take over the role of Managing Director from MRX’s founder, who was looking to hand his business over to the next generation. Alarico was delighted: “It was everything I was looking for – I liked the business, the product, the culture and the team. I’m responsible for a Siemens business that has over 150 employees. We have ambitious growth targets. It’s a challenging role in a fantastic company.” He manages his new role with ease and enthusiasm. Now living in Perth, Australia, where MRX is headquartered, he loves the fact that he can get to work on his skateboard.
Alarico says, “Working at Siemens Management Consulting gave me opportunities I wouldn’t have had anywhere else.”
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