Alumni STORIES – VOL.1 | charlotte menargues

Home » All our news » Alumni STORIES – VOL.1 | charlotte menargues

I wondered if this was really what life was all about. It is crucial to be aligned with and to respect yourself.

Alumna | INSEEC
Program | Management Control Audit
Graduated in 2008
City of residence | Montpellier

What made you progress as a student, and still does today?

The conviction that I could contribute to the world and to society! When I was a student, I wanted to be a good worker, and to give my best while adding my stone to the pile. Today, I think I can do a little more; I can actually help design the building!

Deciphering the enigmas of data to their full extent and transcribing an activity in figures down to the last cent, Charlotte “finds the grains of sand” when she intervenes for companies with a certain science of language: “I feel like an interpreter who translates what is actually behind backwards numbers. In terms of intellectual stimulation, with auditing, we are well-served!” The consultant, who specializes in crisis situations, couldn’t close a client’s file as soon as she has made her diagnosis; rather turning toward her skills in consulting engineering to bestow a “test and learn” style action plan as an outsourced CFO. As a “dedicated environmentalist” who refuses to travel if carpooling or taking the train are not viable options, she even sits on various management committees without deviating from the line drawn by her own structure’s foundations: “I called it “Gestion Durable”, which means “sustainable management”! It is my way of proving that it is possible to couple companies’ growth ambitions with a decreasing vision of personal consumption. My goal is precisely to help SMBs to better keep on track in a sustainable way to avoid getting off course.” Despite her requirements for integrity, the adventurer, who has surveyed more than one horizon, did not hesitate to take on a course with several curves: “I achieve my objectives while maintaining a certain degree of control over the obstacles I may encounter. And in my opinion, the job of management control is less about auditing than it is about steering and guiding.” After leaving her native Var for the French capital’s boulevards, Charlotte went to INSEEC Grande École to advance her knowledge in line with her “somewhat naive dream” of working in Paris’ business district, La Defense.

In addition to the general culture classes that helped her understand what makes the world turn, the days of fruitful instruction, and her budding interest in finance thanks to her meeting with an illustrious auditor, it was, above all, the possibility of an apprenticeship program that added up to the positive math which led the student to choose this path: “The cost of the education was a criterion for me, and the work-study program proved to be the best solution. This professional experience, which is acquired very early on, also saves one a lot of time!” Two years spent balancing a tutorial group and work experience with a construction company taught her how to operate the levers of autonomy, and how to modulate her job according to her current proclivity: “I have always managed to shape the contours of my jobs so as to orient myself towards the areas that I like the most. That’s how I’ve been able to do as much as I can in each of my jobs.” But before asserting her expertise as an independent professional, Charlotte also scoured the workings of giants listed on the CAC 40; honing this requirement until she reached a breaking point in her career, then taking pause to build perspective during a gap year: “Having a big salary, eating out every day and going to Club Med every two months… I wondered if this was really what life was all about. It is crucial to be aligned with and to respect yourself. I left a major audit firm to overcome my fears and travel alone. When I came back from this world tour of kitesurfing spots, I settled in Montpellier and even got my instructor’s diploma, in order to practice this passion in parallel.”

In this unfamiliar city, Charlotte battled to remain in the black in her first year and went on the attack, leaning on a strong network: “It is necessary to know how to solicit and use your network intelligently. Whatever the situation, there is always an ally to be found. It was thanks to the contacts I made at INSEEC that I signed my first client!” Out of loyalty to her former school, the woman who does not shy from disharmony now puts her knowledge at the service of the Lyon campus and its future graduates — “it’s still a challenge for me; I’m not known for my patience!” While passing on the basics of internal auditing and finance in courses that are perfectly framed by the slides she has toiled to carefully compile, it is not uncommon for the teacher to go freestyle. Because it is by stepping outside the box that Charlotte might manage to prove the law of attraction right; she who feels so alive when deploying her kitesurf in strong weather knows just how good it can feel to let the wind carry her.

Written portrait© Maison Trafalgar | Watercolor drawing © Maison Trafalgar & Camille Romanetto

Updated 18 October 2022