UM Today | Asper School of Business

May 28, 2024 — 

Manager of Business Development at New Media Manitoba and Asper alum, Corinne Gusnoski [BComm(Hons)/18] spends her days doing everything from consulting with Ubisoft Winnipeg to learning new applications for virtual reality (VR) technology.

Despite Gusnoski’s tech-oriented work, her background is in business. Day-to-day, she works with interactive digital media companies and leverages her business expertise to support their goals.

“In the interactive digital media sector, there is exceptional technical and creative talent, but there is also a need for business expertise and opportunities for business professionals in tech companies,” she explains.

She also leads GameBiz Lab, an initiative bringing business education and consulting to Manitoba’s video game community, which has brought guests like Pierre Moisan (who acted as CEO and founder of ArtMedia Studios and producer at Ubisoft) to speak with up-and-coming video game studios.

For Gusnoski, working in interactive digital media means learning something new every day, from what’s hot in the indie game scene to the safety training capabilities of VR technology.

“Being part of New Media Manitoba and meeting with professionals in different fields, I’m always learning, and that is one the best parts of this role. I think for many people, especially early in their career, it can be intimidating how much you don’t yet know, but being open and curious allows you to fill those gaps, ask questions and know more for the future.

“At Asper, I learned to embrace this continuous learning.”

Openness and curiosity have guided Gusnoski since her first day at the Asper School of Business. She joined the program wanting to help people, pursuing majors in human resource management and international business. She also joined with the intent to explore.

“I’m glad that I had that mindset because it allowed me to be flexible and pursue what really interested me. It wasn’t that I saw my career from day one, but I saw Asper as the best path for me to explore.”

Explore she did, as Gusnoski completed three co-op work terms and two international exchanges (Singapore and Sweden), participated in pitch and case competitions and was involved in student action groups, making connections whose impact she could not have imagined at first meeting.

When Gusnoski took on her first post-grad role as a Business Development Coordinator at Economic Development Winnipeg, she worked with a client whom she’d first met during Asper co-op interviews. That same connection recommended her for her current role at New Media Manitoba years later.

Gusnoski didn’t take on a co-op role with this client as a student—she didn’t go on to work for the company after graduating—but she made an impression in the interview that resonated years later.

Connections like this—more investment than transaction—accrue value over time. They evolve with the people that make them. As Gusnoski describes it, there is some practicality to networking, but a network without real connection doesn’t get you very far.

“A big piece of networking is being curious and honestly interested in the other person. It’s more meaningful to get to know someone beyond their ability to offer you work. It’s about making connections not just exchanging business cards.”

For Gusnoski, successful networking is about collaborating across expertise and experience rather than just across levels of seniority, reaching out to peers and emerging professionals. Connecting with CEOs is great, but there is a wealth of knowledge, experience, insight and support in a cohort of young business professionals across sectors.

As Vice-Chair of the Young Associates of the Asper School of Business, the premier network of young leaders, connected to The Associates of the Asper School of Business, she sees this every day.

“When I graduated, I was so consumed by having a new job and wanting to contribute there that I started to feel disconnected from my peers. There was a gap between the community I had at Asper and my work.

“When I joined the Young Associates, I had access to professional development and expert insights, but more importantly, I felt like I was part of a community again, and I had the chance to connect with Asper students, but now as an alum and mentor.”

In her role on the Young Associates and at New Media Manitoba, Gusnoski is making connections: with tech innovators designing the future, with developers crafting your favourite new game and with Asper students learning with openness and curiosity.

Since 1993, the Young Associates of the Asper School of Business have engaged young professionals through various unique developmental and networking forums, inspired by their mission statement: Learn. Connect. Give Back.

Vice-Chair Corinne Gusnoski shares some advice for recent Asper graduates: “Let people at Asper know that you want to stay involved. The more you say you’re interested, the more you show up, the more people reach out and share opportunities.” Learn more about connecting with the Young Associates of the Asper School of Business here.