Oxford University

Saïd Business School
Program Strengths

An Executive MBA should offer a transformative experience. The Oxford program is designed to change the way individuals think about themselves as leaders and about how they can make a difference to the future of their firm and its place in an increasingly complex global environment. 

The program challenges Executive MBA participants to think differently about the issues facing their organizations, to question the decisions they make as senior managers, and to consider new ways of making an impact. The program brings together people from more than 25 nationalities, making it one of the most globally diverse Executive MBAs in the world. Oxford’s tradition of debate and discussion means that participants enjoy unrivalled opportunities to understand the challenges of globalization and the requirements for operating successfully across cultures. No one leaves the program unchanged, and alumni frequently refer to the power of their EMBA network.

Curriculum Highlights

One of Oxford’s most recent initiatives, Global Opportunities and Threats Oxford (GOTO) combines expertise from the school and program with that of other colleagues throughout the University to study multidisciplinary issues, such as demography, Big Data, and the effect of water scarcity on business. GOTO provides students the opportunity to tackle issues that affect organizations throughout the world, and makes them part of the board-level conversations that many of their CEOs already are having.

Business leaders from a variety of organizations also come to the school as guest speakers and also co-teach some electives, offering students access to contacts and insights that can help them in their career transitions. For example, an angel investor from Silicon Valley co-teaches the module on Entrepreneurial Finance, which takes place in California.

The Oxford Executive MBA Program incorporates modules taught abroad, one in India covering Operations Management and another in China that looks at Business in Emerging Markets. Students also may choose an optional elective on Venture Capital that is delivered in Silicon Valley. The modules and electives draw on the deep expertise and networks of Saïd Business School faculty in these specific regions and subject matters. The modules and electives combine lectures, case studies, and insights from local organizations and program alumni. They provide an invaluable learning experience in a context that relates directly to the subject matter, as well as allow participants the opportunity to network and experience different business cultures.

Leadership Development

The school offers all EMBA students executive coaching, with a session on understanding individual leadership style, and one-on-one sessions with a business coach to help participants focus on their professional goals alongside their academic studies. The executive coaches work with the school’s career talent development team, which offers a series of workshops on topics that range from CV writing skills to salary negotiation skills. The course includes a module on strategic leadership, with new sessions that focus on navigating an increasingly complex global environment, including managing relationships with governments as well as business.

Leaders of complex organizations need to understand their strengths and weaknesses and be able to inspire others to achieve the firm’s goals. The best executive education programs ask students to look in depth at their own leadership style, to think in a fresh way about innovation and change, and to develop a compelling story about strategy. These programs are transformational, not just skill-based.

The school is part of a world-class university and community that is dedicated to studying and solving world-scale problems. The program brings this spirit of inquiry and problem solving to the structure of all its executive programs, and can call on the expertise of globally renowned experts in a huge variety of disciplines, from management science to the humanities and neuroscience.