Your IMD EMBA journey

Your IMD EMBA journey

How the program works

The IMD Executive MBA is a modular program consisting of a Foundation Stage and a Mastery Stage, giving you the flexibility to choose the format and timing that works best for you.This blended, flexible modular curriculum allows you to combine personal development with daily life. 

  • 15-19 months total depending on your work commitments 
  • 7 starting dates per year
  • 7-9 weeks out of the office in total (depending on your Foundation Stage choice)

The Foundation Stage can either be taken as a 20-day on-campus program plus 5 weeks online, or 17-week online/liVe virtual program plus 5 weeks online.

The Mastery Stage comprises six 1-week modules spread over twelve months. The total out-of-office time required to complete the Executive MBA ranges from 7 to 9 weeks depending on your Foundation Stage format choice.

Foundation Stage options

You choose one of two Foundation Stage options before entering the Mastery Stage.

Option 1: Foundation Stage at Lausanne campus
3 weeks face-to-face at IMD campus, Lausanne

Foundations for Business Leadership (FBL)
3 weeks face-to-face at IMD campus, Lausanne
(8 ECTS credits)

Fast-track your understanding of key business fundamentals. Master the core functions of a complex organization.
Streams:Ā marketing, finance & accounting, business model innovation & entrepreneurship, strategy & industry analysis, operations & supply chain management

View full details of Foundations for Business Leadership (FBL)

Advanced Management Concepts (AMC)
5 weeks online
(5 ECTS credits)
Online learning requires approx. 15 hours per week.

Go deeper into the topics covered during FBL with this five-week distance learning module.
Streams: strategic thinking, finance, marketing, ESG fundamentals

Option 2: Fully virtual Foundation Stage
17 weeks online / live virtual classroom plus 5 weeks online

Global Management Foundations (fully virtual)
(8 ECTS credits)

This 17-week journey enables you to launch your IMD Executive MBA without the need to travel for the foundation stage. This highly interactive, virtual learning experience enables you to build your business leadership skills for a rapidly changing world with full capability-building and integration of the latest general management topics.

Learn more about Global Management Foundations (GMF)

Advanced Management Concepts (AMC)
5 weeks online
(5Ā  ECTS credits)
Online learning requires approx. 15 hours per week.

Go deeper into the topics covered during GMF with this five-week distance learning module.
Streams: strategic thinking, finance, marketing, ESG fundamentals

Mastery stage

12-month blended learning module which requires only 6 weeks out of the office, with only one week at a time.
– 6 x 1-week residential modules comprising 3 x Core Modules at IMD in Lausanne, 3 x global Discovery Expeditions
– Distance learning in between modules
IMD Mastery is constructed with different modules: from personal leadership, to business management assignments, towards building a global perspective. These themes combine to create solid, integrated learning. See more details below.

(47 ECTS credits)

Leadership Stream
Become a more self-aware, reflective and strategic leader

Many find that theĀ leadership stream is the most enlighteningĀ and valuableĀ 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.

Receive high-impact personal leadership coaching integrated throughout the program

IMDā€™s Executive MBA is not just about acquiring and mastering technical knowledge,Ā itā€™s a transformational human experience. Benefit from one-on-one leadership coaching throughout the program. Enhance your ability toĀ positively impact your organizationĀ as you discover how you take-up authority, better understand group dynamics andĀ develop the inner resilience to cope in any situation.

Global Discovery Expeditions
Experience globalization first-hand.

You will join three, one-week expeditions, enabling you to gain deep understanding of the global business environment through major themes such as:

  • Entrepreneurship: from ideas to execution
  • Innovation
  • Corporate transformations
  • Social innovation and impact investment
  • Business challenges in emerging economies
  • Start-up ecosystems


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.

Explore themes and destinations

Entrepreneurship: from ideas to execution
Work directly with a Swiss start-up, understand the market and potential business opportunity, and pitch the start-up to venture capitalists.
Potential destinations: Silicon Valley, Dubai, India

Analyse a real business challenge for a company, carry out a strategic analysis and develop recommendations for the client firm.
Potential destinations: Estonia, China

Corporate transformations
Carry out a real project to examine corporate transformations for a company and make recommendations for a major transformation.
Potential destinations: India

Social innovation & impact investment
Learn how to think big in a small market. Find ventures that have the potential to grow and scale.
Potential destinations: Peru

Business challenges in emerging economies
Learn about the unique opportunities and challenges of doing business in emerging markets.
Potential destinations: Kenya

Start-up ecosystems
Enhance your understanding of what is required for an entrepreneurial ecosystem to flourish and identify potential pitfalls.
Potential destinations: Israel

Company Assignments
Lead innovation back in your organization
Benefit from your very own corporate learning ā€œlabā€. You will channel the innovative tools, frameworks and new knowledge straight back into your workplace. Through five tailored Company Assignments, you will have the chance to work directly with your company to try out new ideas, gather input and feedback, to refine and develop a fully-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.
Executive Career Management
Explore a range of exciting, potential futures for yourself

Ensure your professional and personal fulfilment with our guidance. Whether you plan to change employment after the EMBA or accelerate your career within your current company, pro-actively planning your career path and leveraging your resources is critical to your success.

  • Career strategy
  • Leverage your experience and skills
  • Career design

Throughout the Mastery Stage of the EMBA, you will be working both onsite and at a distance through a series of workshops, webinars, career management tools and counselling with an experienced Career Strategist who will be matched with you according to your needs.

Crisis Management
Successfully manage extreme uncertainty and risk

Prepare yourself for every leaderā€™s reality with crisis leadership training from top experts – the Swiss Armed Forces.

To complete your EMBA journey, you will be challenged to experience a crisis situation in a high intensity, two-day simulation. You and your team will learn how to lead in a crisis from generals of the Swiss Armed Forces and how to communicate with various stakeholders. You will have to deal with stress, uncertainty, surprises, fatigue and frustration. You will learn how crisis leadership is different ā€“ when to switch from ā€œbusiness as usualā€ to crisis-mode ā€“ and how to lead from briefing to briefing under time pressure.

See discovery expeditions in action

The learning objective of each Discovery Expedition is to help you to rapidly absorb a large amount about the world and the global business environment and to translate learnings to your own company and work context. You will deepen your global business understanding through major themes like: entrepreneurship, innovation, sustainability, transformation and much more.

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.

Learn more about EMBA faculty

Meet the expert faculty guiding your success
Professor Vanina Farber

elea Professor of Social Innovation; Dean of the Executive MBA

Professor Shlomo Ben-Hur

Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior

Professor Julia Binder

Professor of Sustainable Innovation and Business Transformation Director of IMD Center for Sustainable and Inclusive Business

Professor Goutam Challagalla

Professor of Marketing and Strategy

Professor Carlos Cordon

Professor of Strategy and Supply Chain Management

Professor Frederic Dalsace

Professor of Marketing and Strategy

Prof Mark Greeven IMD
Professor Mark Greeven

Professor of Innovation and Strategy

Knut Haanaes
Professor Knut Haanaes

Professor of Strategy and International Management, Lundin Sustainability Chair

Professor Florian Hoos

Professor of Sustainability and ESG Accounting

Professor Amit Joshi

Professor of AI, Analytics and Marketing Strategy at IMD

Professor BenoƮt Leleux

Stephan Schmidheiny Professor of Entrepreneurship and Finance

Professor Jennifer Jordan

Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior

Professor Alyson Meister

Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior

Professor Stefan Michel

Professor of Strategy and Marketing

Professor Anand Narasimhan

Shell Professor of Global Leadership

Professor NiccolĆ² Pisani

Professor of Strategy and International Business

Adjunct Professor Jim Pulcrano

Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship and Management

Karl Schmedders

Professor of Finance

Professor Ralf Seifert

Professor of Operations Management

Professor Leif Sjƶblom

Professor of Financial Management

Professor Ina Toegel

Professor of Leadership and Organizational Change

Howard Yu
Professor Howard Yu

LEGOĀ® Professor of Management and Innovation; Director, IMD Center for Future Readiness