IMD Executive MBA Mastery Stage

The mastery stage is a 12-month blended learning module which requires only 6 weeks out of the office.

You spend 3 weeks face-to-face at IMD Lausanne campus, 3 weeks face-to-face on Discovery Expeditions to global destinations, plus distance learning where you work on your own company and leadership assignments.

The objective of the mastery stage is for executives to achieve a level of mastery in three dimensions: organizational, individual and global.



Conduct 5 overlapping projects to apply concepts to the realities of your own organization, gaining a holistic view of business problems, understanding them separately and in combination.



Further your journey of self-discovery and skill building, becoming a more reflective leader with a high sense of self-awareness.



Building on your immersive and enlightening week-long trips to diverse hubs of the world, you gain expertise about the world around you.

Dive into your Executive MBA experience
Mastery stage graphic
Discovery Expedition locations are subject to change. Modules run in a different order depending on which Mastery Stage (April, September or December) session you attend. For one of your expeditions, there is a choice between two destination locations which varies by cohort entry date. These locations will include two of the following: Brazil, Israel, Kenya and Peru.

Company assignments: create new value for your company and your career

Based in your office, you work at a distance with IMD, completing assignments that use your company as the "laboratory". You focus on marketing, finance, strategy, digital transformation, and cultural transformation.

You try out new ideas, gather input and feedback, and go back to refine and develop a full-fledged business proposal, strategy or execution plan. The assignments are introduced in a cumulative way through a cycle of execution and reflection, integrating step by step what you learn on the leadership stream and in the Discovery Expeditions.

Learn more in the EMBA Sponsor Guide.

Leadership stream: develop high-impact leadership skills

It's about you, as an effective individual, getting things done with others. Many find this the most enlightening and valuable element of the program. You reflect and experiment with your leadership style through team simulations, individual assignments, and personal one-on-one coaching.

Leadership is at the heart of your ability to effect change in your organization. This is critical as you move into senior management roles where you are increasingly responsible and accountable for delivering results, especially through others.

Discovery Expeditions: experience globalization first-hand

You join three Discovery Expeditions throughout the year where you explore the global and regional forces that impact the way business is done in different parts of the world. 

Guided by passionate faculty and local experts, you see life as it is, in companies, as well as in the cultural, economic and political context in which they operate. 

Crisis management simulation: cope with uncertainty, manage risks

IMD is the only school partnered with the Swiss Armed Forces to provide EMBA participants with an opportunity to take part in a realistic crisis simulation. Over the course of two days in the final module, you take part in practical exercises that escalate in intensity. You learn when and how to switch from day-to-day business to managing a crisis situation.

Executive Career Management: the master of your destiny

Receive career management tools and personalized guidance to help clarify your professional career strategy and how you can best fulfill your aspirations – whether this means pursuing a career within your current organization or elsewhere.


IMD complies with applicable laws and regulations, including with respect to international sanctions that may be imposed on individuals and countries. This policy applies to all applications for IMD programs from individuals or organizations, and any commercial or non-commercial partnerships.