The Strathmore University Business School (SBS) has been able to successfully transition its learning from the physical lecture halls to virtual learning. This week marked the official start of the Executive Education virtual programmes.
The first programme to begin virtually was the Senior Management Leadership Programme (SMLP), a programme designed for senior management executives from both public and private organizations across the East African region. In a first-of-its-kind, the Executive Education department successfully kicked off module I of the programme online.
Initial assessment and bonding sessions were held in April and May as participants prepared for the first module. Faculty have been working tirelessly to ensure participants studying remotely – whether at home or safe working spaces – have been able to access their sessions in full using different modes of delivery.
The aim of the Executive Education Digital Programme has been and continues to be offering senior managers and leaders an enlightening, transformative, innovative, and worthy experience in real-time. This is to prepare them impact their organizations and personal lives positively in these volatile and uncertain times.
These virtual sessions have been offering a level of engagement to the participants. This is through class discussions, case studies review, syndicate/group exercises as well as networking among peers.
Living in the uncertain and unpredictable nature of the crisis, now more than ever the senior management in various leadership positions, there’s an undisputable fact over the past couple of months: the management’s job has never been harder. From managing teams remotely, to reviewing operations and scaling down non-essential services as well as dealing with an unpaid or reduced workforce. The current challenges have thrown out the 2020 playbook that any company or organization had been using going into the first quarter of 2020.
Borne out of brevity and agility required of senior management; the participants undertook this unbeaten path. It has illustrated the importance of retooling oneself during this period of unprecedented changes.
The Management and Leadership courses at the Executive Education department could not have been in a more opportune time. The SMLP as one of the courses asks the participants to take an introspective view of their strengths and weaknesses – learning how to be their best selves, take a 360 degrees evaluation of their career journey, workplace engagement as well as the work-life balance and developing clear and succinct goals for the best skills and behaviours to work on.
Jenkins Nelson, a participant working with a Government corporation writing in from Kampala, Uganda noted, “the SMLP Programme has shifted aspects of my thinking. I walk away from Module I with an advanced framework for better decision making and a clear understanding of what I want to represent as a leader. It has taught me a few business tools I can easily apply in my professional life and offered a great opportunity to network and share experience.”
The content is for the current and future thinking on decision-making, financials, leadership, marketing, operations, and strategy. It allows the individuals who may have outstanding functional skills in one department or area of business to think about their role to other appendages of the business or organization.
Rose Tino from a global NGO managing a team across the Eastern part of Africa from Nairobi also had this to say,“By moving the programme online, Strathmore demonstrated extraordinary agility. It was delivered well, on time, and with an understanding of participants’ constraints during this time. Joining this programme was one of the best investments I ever made.”
“The different facilitators provoked me to a real meaningful of introspection and reflection I have been meaning and needed to have but lacked the tools and the environment to do. It was powerful, challenging, and empowering to set off on a journey of self-discovery, understand my strengths as a leader, and explore ways for developing other areas even better to become an effective and efficient leader,” said Rose.
Isaac Waititu, the General Manager of a food processing firm chimed in noting the following; “My experience in this Module has been very rich. I was able to know myself better through the Strength Finder and Wheel of Life, identifying my areas of weakness that I need to work on, and how to balance my professional and personal life.
A critical component of the programme is the coaching sessions where everyone is assigned an Executive Coach to learn about themselves, work on individual goals, identify and prioritize an organizational project, and execute. As the part of the pre-course, individuals were assigned and allocated their coaches to assist them identify their biggest management and leadership challenges.
The case study approach with real-life leadership struggles and how to make turnaround issues and thrive. Identifying leadership unethical behaviours that have brought down bit corporations was another key learning.”
The virtual learning platforms have given participants a fair amount of control over the pace and place of their studies. It may also help prepare the management in managing their remote teams and employees as the pandemic continues to challenge the work culture and environment.
As part of other online engagements, SBS has been offering a webinar learning series dubbed ‘Navigating the Pandemic’ which covers key areas in Corporate Governance, Human Resource, Financial Planning, and topics relevant to the current challenges across all industries and spectrums.
The greater Strathmore University fraternity is looking forward to a resumption of learning activities under strict health and social measures. Working closely with Government and education stakeholders, it is our aim to continue offering the best in transformative leadership and management tools and skills. Until then, we shall continue offering these online, availing both leading faculty in their areas of expertise and resources to enable one and all learn and manage their career journeys.
Admissions for the 2021 Senior Management Leadership Programme is ongoing, register here
For more information, write to Richard on firstname.lastname@example.org
Article by Richard Wanjohi.
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