The Wall Street Journal recently published several articles about executive education after it did a study on the best executive MBA programs. As a result, I’m going to do a three-week series on the different findings.!@!
The first article, “Are They Worth It?,” states that corporations are increasingly satisfied with EMBA programs. In fact, about 47 percent of the corporate human resources and executive development executives surveyed said that EMBA programs have improved in the past five years.
And many corporations are beginning to track the benefits of these programs, a move that I hope indicates more companies are pushing for better return on investment measures in general. I’m curious, has there been a push at your organization to assess how executive education programs are impacting participants’ behaviors? And if so, what are you finding?
I was also intrigued by Bob Cancalosi’s (the CLO at GE Healthcare) comments, as he hopes that these programs will help executives better understand the balance “between right- and left-brain thinking.” He added: “It allows us to not always be drinking our own bath water.” By participating in executive education, executives gain a wealth of knowledge in interacting with peers and professors, but it also teaches them to think differently. It’s a needed breath of fresh air that allows executives to think about the same issues in new ways.
Also, according to the survey, the most important skills for an EMBA program to address are:
1. Strategic thinking/planning.
2. Ability to work across multiple functional areas.
3. Ability to drive results.
4. General leadership.
5. Core financial understanding.
And it seems that executive education institutions are listening, as more schools are asking employers what they want in an effort to better understand the needs. Are you finding that executive education institutions are more willing to listen to your needs? More to come on this next week.
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