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Posted by: on March 2, 2020

Why it’s never too early or too late: The Executive MBA for Leaders from a...

I decided to apply to Oxford’s Executive MBA programme in early 2018. At the time, the business I co-founded had just turned three. In our short history, we had been through the roller-coaster of start-up life, experiencing highs and lows. Our business had grown from a team of two people to >150. We had raised […]

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Posted by: on January 23, 2020

Corporate Turnaround

An “heroic” turnaround manager arrived with his brigade only 100 days ago. A poem was discovered in the drawer of a former middle manager, who was understood to be the victim of this aggressive corporate turnaround. Wretched (Turnaround) Man (after Stevie Smith) Wretched man that thou art How thou piercest the corporate heart With thy […]

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Posted by: on December 19, 2019

You thought you knew it all

Oxford has to be one of the only few places in the world, aside from that ‘other place’, that requires you to wear a bow tie and academic gown to write an exam. Here I was on a chilly, foggy, and rather quintessential Oxford morning on December 2nd pacing toward St Hugh’s College dining hall […]

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Posted by: on December 19, 2019

Integration of Strategy, Operations and Leadership for excellence

I was rather sceptical about “standard” EMBA courses like Leadership, Strategy, and Operations before I took the module. Even though I have taken these courses before during my previous degree programs, it was difficult and nearly impossible to apply standard models and frameworks in real business. Many companies still struggle with strategy application, as usually […]

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Posted by: on December 5, 2019

The James Taylor effect

I am stunned awake from my deep slumber by a duality of interruptions. The combination of a stream of blinding autumn sunlight percolating through the curtains and a raging debate on TV – which I would later recognize as the never-ending Brexit discourse – was fragmenting and distorting my sluggish mind. In a BoB – […]

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Posted by: on November 29, 2019

Upcoming study trip to Shanghai and Hangzhou

Early next year, my Oxonian colleagues and I are embarking on a study trip to China. Having been in touch with Prof. Eric Thun, a particular focus will be put on the institutional transformation of China from plan to market. In this blog, I summarise my initial thoughts on our journey and the topics discussed […]

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Posted by: on October 31, 2019

Faith

What was it exactly that Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi and Jesus did to negotiate a greater outcome from an initially weak position? In our negotiation classes we learnt about dividing and growing the pie. We delved into possible and probable causes of impasse. We role-played together and scored points with and against each other. We […]

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Posted by: on September 19, 2019

Benchmarks for Sustainable Improvements on the Continent

In our Executive MBA class at the University of Oxford, we agree that there is a need for higher quality institutions on the African continent; making institutional quality visible helps to constrain actors and empower those without means. More depth and a higher frequency of measurement of indicators, than currently performed by organisations, is needed: […]

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Posted by: on September 3, 2019

Shareholder value: Friedman gets floored?

Last month the Business Roundtable, a group of the US’s most powerful CEOs, appeared to overturn decades of commitment to the belief that the primary purpose of a corporation was to provide ‘shareholder value’. Instead, they broadened the concept to capture ‘stakeholder value’, including employees, customers, suppliers and communities. Much of the concept of shareholder […]

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Posted by: on August 21, 2019

Tradition

During startups era, talk about tradition is seen as prehistorical behavior, since disruption and tradition apparently do not go along. Nevertheless, this week in Oxford showed me that long term values and rituals lay a powerful cornerstone for business activities, that are deeper than a business canvas, something called ethics and governance. 9th module of […]

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