Sep 2018 - May 2020
My suitcase is packed, a bit of intellectual refreshing has been completed through reading materials and workbook exercises and now it is finally time to head to class.
The timetable looks interesting. The first module, “Business Complexity & Decision Making” will address leadership fundamentals, personality and leadership and leaders and decision making. We will also beginning the “analytics” journey and start conversations around the “global rules of the game”.
Understanding the dynamics of leadership intrigues me. I am excited to learn more on the topic. As the former CEO of a manufacturing facility, I lead the business through its various stages; the revival from bankruptcy, numerous re-financings, rapid and steady growth, marketing strategy development and execution, plant capacity management, my buy-out of the business from the former stakeholders, taking the company public on the Toronto Stock Exchange and finally the sale of the business to one of our major competitors. I am hoping to learn how my leadership style affected each aspect of the business. Did I lead differently during the urgent bankruptcy period than when I did with the competition breathing down our necks? Did I do things intuitively or was there more to it? As I learned in our recommended reading, Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Peace Prize winner in Economics, would ask if I employed more System 1 thinking or did System 2 thinking prevail? Did my leadership style affect our corporate culture? Was change within the organization a direct result of how I lead the organization? I had no previous manufacturing or operational experience as I headed in to run the business so how did I learn the leadership skills? How much of my personality became engrained in the business? I am hoping that as I better understand the dynamics of leadership it will help me reflectively assess the effectiveness of the decisions that I made and help me in my leadership pursuits in the future.
I look forward to meeting my classmates from around the world. Kathy Harvey the Programme Director and Peter Tufano the Dean will welcome us as we begin the two year journey of learning. Our full day classes begin bright and early with time to eat, converse, be welcomed and of course – LEARN.
I decided to have a “before” photo taken on my way to school. In a few years, I am hoping that my outfit will look completely different and will include a cap and gown!
Only a few more days to go……
P.S. I am the author of a children’s financial literacy book series entitled M is for Money®. I will be bringing a set with me so that I can photograph the books as they too journey through Oxford.Back to top of article