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Managers learn to hone their leadership skills

Published on Friday, 18 May 2012
Eimund Loo
Richard Petty

Management MBA

Organisations today are seeking executives who are flexible, who possess superior knowledge, and who are also blessed with the ability to lead and manage effectively.

To prepare executives with good communication and negotiation skills, as well as the ability to motivate and inspire others, the Hong Kong Management Association (HKMA) has worked with the Sydney-based Macquarie Graduate School of Management (MGSM) to offer an MBA programme that focuses on management skills.

“The programme gives students a solid grounding in the core aspects of general management. They aim to provide a strategic business perspective, focusing on the competitive advantage of the enterprise. They teach how to manage functional areas and understand the language they use, not just how to perform the functions with technical expertise,” says Professor Richard Petty, associate dean (International) of MGSM.

The programme gives managers the skills they need to excel at a high level in business. It offers annual overseas study tours which give students first-hand insights into leading international organisations and their business practices, as well as enabling them to expand networks and build relationships with executives from major international organisations.

 “We are focused on providing students with a practical and applied learning experience,” says Petty. “Students can take a research based unit that involves writing a short ‘thesis’ as part of their MBA programme. The research-based unit arranges for a student to tackle advanced applied research problems and may eventually lead to a publication in a professional or business journal, thereby adding another achievement to the student’s résumé.”

Networking events are held regularly to allow students from different cohorts to get to know one another.

“Alumni and student events are an important part of the MBA experience. The events allow students to meet and share ideas and experiences that are relevant to both their learning and professional environment,” says Petty.

The Dean’s Award is an important feature of student networking in Hong Kong. They were introduced by MGSM in 2006 to recognise superior student performances.
“Students become eligible for a Dean’s Award by scoring the highest grade in a particular subject unit. The awards are conferred on students during networking functions and students often bring friends or members of their family along the events to watch them receive an award,” says Petty.

Eimund Loo, senior manager, strategic projects Asia-Pacific at Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, attends the course to consolidate the knowledge and experience he has gained over the years.
“The things I learn will be valued by my employer and it is a benchmark for me professionally,” he says. “The course covered a wide span of disciplines typically found in today’s multinational organisations, ranging from finance and accounting as well as operational and strategic management. The course has allowed me to gain exposure into areas within a company that I would not experience directly in my normal line of work,” he adds.

Loo finds that the knowledge he learned in class relates a lot to his daily work. “Courses such as information decision analysis and business performance management and measurement had direct applicability in my profession. I found that the theories learned in these areas provided greater clarity and ability to converse during meetings with my clients by demystifying some of the technical analysis and understanding the jargon used by the industry experts,” he says.

The programme takes 24 to 30 months of part-time study to complete. Classes take place on Friday nights, Saturday afternoons and evenings, and Sundays. Applicants should hold an undergraduate degree with a minimum of two years’ management experience. Application closes on May 25. 

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