Executive development program: Innovative design key to a successful executive development program

The executive development program has become an important part of career building for executives who constantly strive to take on new challenges. As the global business environment becomes increasingly complex, the demand for quality programs delivering relevant outcomes has risen. Research and innovation have helped provide deeper insights, better tools and, overall, more sophisticated program design.

IMD - one of the top business schools in the world - leads the way with some of the best leadership development and management training programs anywhere. Here, IMD offers some insights into what gets results in an executive development program.

A top-ranked business management school
It’s clear that the top management training programs come from the top business management schools in the world. Executive education rankings can help you identify these business schools.

At IMD, our 100% focus on executive education motivates us to constantly innovate and ensure great fit and real outcomes in all our business development courses and leadership training programs. This consistently earns us top position in international rankings in respected publications like the Financial Times.

A flexible design
True learning takes time, but busy careers mean time spent at an executive education programs needs to be used effectively. A good executive development program reflects this.

Some management training programs, for example, mix on-campus modules with distance learning. Other leadership training programs and business training courses are short, intense experiences designed to boost specific business or leadership skills. Both formats minimize time away from the office while providing maximum benefits - which suits you best depends on your schedule and needs.

The right focus
Managers at different career stages don’t need the same things from an executive development program. The best leadership development programs are designed to build specific knowledge and skills appropriate for a particular stage. When choosing a program, it’s important to assess which one addresses your particular goals, challenges and ambition.

Young managers, for example, may benefit most from management training programs that focus on building business skills. Functional managers need a different kind of leadership program to move into general management. And top managers may benefit from strategic management training.

Engaging learning
An effective executive development program helps you learn better by “doing” rather than just by “seeing”. Classroom teaching and case studies have their place, of course, but the best leadership training programs also use innovative, hands-on learning experiences. These can include:

  • Job-specific project work
  • Leadership and executive coaching
  • Highly interactive simulations
  • Discovery expeditions – hands-on experience of critical global issues in exciting markets
  • The development of action plans and/or a personal leadership development plan

Immediate and ongoing value
A good executive development program will provide both immediate and ongoing benefits. You should be able to apply your new skills and knowledge straight away. The program should also help you become a stronger leader with a greater capacity for finding new approaches and leading change - qualities and skills that will serve you well throughout your career. Look too for business schools and programs that provide ongoing learning opportunities to alumni - a useful added value from any executive development program.

 

Prepare to move from functional manager to business leadership

Want to move from functional manager to business leadership?
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