We all know that management can't be learned in a classroom, but it can be enhanced through classroom activities if these remain closely linked to the real experience of participants. EMBA students (and those on similar programs for experienced managers) who take this as a Module in their degree program will find it adds profound insights and applicable learning: it is frequently cited as 'the most valuable module' in course evaluations.
But note that it is suitable only for people who are currently holding managerial responsibility. This could mean you are in a substantial management role, manage projects, lead a professional team, or organise a social movement. It is not suitable for full-time students because we work on real, current managerial challenges.
The program is accredited at Masters level by several of the partner business schools, forming an elective module in EMBA and similar programs, including a professional PhD, or as a stand-alone ‘executive education’ course. We can help with integration into a curriculum, into an Exec Ed portfolio or customised leadership development .
"We think in terms of three sorts of learning on the RoundTables for Experienced Managers (RTs), which are invaluable to the development of the students on our MBA program. Learning about content; learning from process; and learning from context. Content traditionally dominates MBA programs, provided by faculty in formal presentations and lectures. At the RTs, content by faculty and representatives of various organisations means only the start of the potential learning.
The primary source of content is engaging with other managers from across the world, much more than what could be achieved in a standard classroom. Indeed, the process followed at the RTs focus on interactive and informative discussions and activities, designed to probe deeply into the resources that all the participants (as well as faculty) bring to the event. As such, participants learn more about themselves and about how activities can be well managed from the process of working with fellow participants and the practices of management. Learnings and observations are integrated and embedded through reflective processes. The RTs process also provide tools to take back home and work with.
The specific context of the RTs provide an invaluable experience to MBA students, with participants and faculty representing many different cultures, from many different countries and business sectors, in a unique context. When our students observe and experience a different context closely and sensitively – and then consider their reactions carefully – they discover an enormous amount about themselves and their managerial challenges. The new context becomes a mirror reflecting back to them all sorts of new understanding of themselves as individuals, leaders and managers.
The seamless and unique integration of content, process and context provide an unrivalled developmental opportunity to any person. In the words of one recent MBA participant: “The setup of the programme in itself is fantastic. There is nothing but praise from my side as the teachings and frameworks really exposed me to new ways of thinking and contributed to my personal growth."
Mias de Klerk
Professor and Head of Research, University of Stellenbosch
In this video we hear from Jo Bangoura a past participant from our first online RoundTables in 2022.