“In my career advice, I urge students and recent graduates of Isenberg to think strategically,” notes Isenberg marketing graduate David Fubini ’76. “If you aren’t moving in a purposeful direction, you’ll be moved along by some other influence, I tell them.” David is Director Emeritus of McKinsey & Company, where for over a decade he was Managing Director of the consulting giant’s Boston office. “I tell students and young professionals to be aware of career tradeoffs and to see the whole board—to look two or three moves ahead,” he continues.
Without question, David Fubini knows strategy. As founder and past leader of McKinsey’s Worldwide Merger Integration Practice, he guided large consolidations in a host of industries, including pharmaceuticals, beverages, and mining. He has also led his firm’s North American Organization Practice and has done extensive pro bono work, helping Boston area civic organizations to sharpen their strategic focus.
Before his 33-year career with McKinsey, he helped Johnson & Johnson's McNeill Consumer Products Division to launch and grow the blockbuster drug, Tylenol. He then earned an MBA from the Harvard Business School.
Impact on Isenberg. Fubini’s footprint at Isenberg is substantial. He has mentored numerous Isenberg seniors and recent graduates, is a visiting practitioner/lecturer in Isenberg classes, and offers strategic insights both to Dean Fuller and as a member of the school’s Leadership Board.
“For me, giving back through mentorship comes naturally, because mentors have been invaluable in my own career,” he observes. That includes Isenberg marketing professor Charles Schewe, who during Fubini’s student days “took me under his wing and helped me to think like a strategist," David recalls.
In June 2014, Isenberg honored Fubini as its Business Leader of the Year in a stylish ceremony at the Colonnade Hotel in Boston. David’s version of leadership, he has made clear, encompasses strategic advice to students and young alumni as much as to global companies.
“In my advice to students, I often cite our managing director,” he remarks. “In his view and mine, basic analytical quantitative skills and ability are a given. With that said, you have to differentiate yourself. That will only come if you cultivate insatiable curiosity and key relationships. You must never allow yourself to plateau or become self-satisfied. And you need to temper your intellectual curiosity with humility.”