Those who wish to actively shape and develop Digital Transformation processes are required to engage in the operational and strategic leadership aspects of digital transformation. This means not only having thorough knowledge of the operational processes of the company, but also to understand how to implement ones’ leadership skills, in order to effectively, expediently and responsibly lead projects and persons in a digital environment.
The MBA programme is spread over a period of four terms and is divided into two study sections.The first study section addresses the challenges of “Managing the Organisation”.The second section is dedicated to “Managing the Business of Tomorrow” and focusses on the drive of Digital Transformation for successful business.
Over the four terms, participants also develop their management and leadership competences through an intensive soft skills training. The MBA concludes with the Master’s Thesis, which should tackle a practical issue that can be addressed in your company or related to a real-business case.
"By joining our MBA program and community, you will begin a stimulating journey that will advance your personal development and enhance your professional skills. Future-focused, the MBA will provide you with a comprehensive understanding of all core business processes. Specifically, you will learn tools, methods, and perspectives on how to cope with the challenges of digital transformation impacting today's business. To provide the most rewarding learning experience possible, we promote a learning and teaching process based on class discussions and interactive seminars that incorporate the thoughts and input of all program participants. You will be able to apply your newly acquired skills and knowledge directly in the real world. We ensure that you are perfectly prepared for your future tasks as a competent and inspiring digital leader of tomorrow."
Prof. Dr. Detlef Schoder - MBA Academic Director
First Study Year
Managing the Organisation
The first semester is designed to focus on the fundamentals of business management and corporate governance (Accounting, Finance, Corporate Development) while the second semester dives into the functional areas of Marketing, Operations Management and Human Resource Management across the spectrum of digitalisation. For this purpose, theories and methods from business administration are explored, elaborated on and clarified with examples from professional practice.
The module Corporate Development provides a foundation on the main topics of corporate strategy. The focus is on the development and implementation of growth strategies based on a systematic evaluation of company-specific resources and capabilities. In addition, strategic challenges of digitisation (especially the emergence of ecosystems) and their influence on corporate strategies are addressed. The aim of the module is to become familiar with essential theoretical frameworks of corporate strategy and their application in practice, with a focus on digitalisation issues.
The module Managerial Accounting takes a managerial perspective and covers the key aspects of managerial accounting and management control. Participants learn about cost accounting systems and the relevance of cost information for effective decision-making and cost control. The module furthermore highlights the role of cost information as an input for management control systems and how the latter isused to implement strategy. The objective of this module is to enable participants to use cost information effectively for decision-making and to evaluate critically the effectiveness of implemented controls.
The Module Human Resource Management and Organisation deals with Human Resource Management and Organisation Management. In management practise, the two aspects of management are closely interrelated, and therefore a strong focus will be put on issues at the intersections between HR and organisation theory. The participants are trained in a strategic approach to HRM addressing the effective management of people in companies and organisations to help them gaina competitive advantage. More specifically, the module also covers aspects of organisational design and organisational behaviour.
The module Financial Management provides a foundation of the main topics in financial management, covering selected topics in the areas of decision-making, corporate finance, corporate governance, and risk management. The focus is on interpreting and understanding firm strategy from financial statements, arriving at optimal financing decisions, comparing and selecting projects based on risk and return, and using risk management to increase firm value. The aim of this module is to empower managers and leaders in organisations to understand, interpret and utilise financial information in order to make effective business decisions and create long-term value for shareholders and stakeholders.
The Marketing Management module focusses on strategic market analysis. Among other things, the optimisation of the marketing mix is examined in order to create value for both customers and the company. The module focuses on the use of data and digital technologies to control market performance.
The module Operations Management addresses supply chain fundamentals with a focus on trade-off decisions (e.g., efficiency vs. responsiveness). The course also tackles the challenges of supply chain transformation, including topics such as SCM 4.0.
Second Study Year
Managing the Business of Tomorrow
The second year focusses on the Management of the “Business of Tomorrow“ in the context of Digital Transformation. It comprises the four modules “Digital Leadership and Change“, “Entrepreneurship and Innovation”, “Digital Business Strategy” as well as “Data and Competitive Advantage”.
The module Digital Leadership and Change conceptualizes Digital Transformation, in particular, how IT innovates products, processes and business models. The module covers key business trends forming today’s competitive landscape. It highlights the fields of action for decision makers and reveals dilemmas and challenges management are confronted with, including for example ambidextry and clash of (innovation) cultures. Emphasis is given on how to cope with Digital Transformation, i.e. how to take a lead and how to organise for innovation and change.
The module Entrepreneurship and Innovation examines methods and tools that can be used to systematically analyse and innovate business models. The participants are challenged in their entrepreneurial way of thinking and equipped with tools on how to successfully implement innovative ideas in practice - in your own company, as well as when founding a start-up business. Topics such as "Agile Working", "Design Thinking" and “Lean Start-Up” are explored. The module also includes a study trip to New York City with company visits and seminars on entrepreneurship and innovation.
The module Digital Business Strategy provides a case-based approach to examine how decision makers should conceptualise the disruptive impact on products, processes, and business models of digital technologies. Focus is on innovating business models based on selected technologies including Artificial Intelligence, Blockchain, and Internet of Things. The course also extends today’s information management towards managing external resources, exemplified with social media.
The module Data and Competitive Advantage explores data with respect to competitive advantage. The module takes a managerial perspective of data-driven competition. Issues include: What are (new) data sources, how to distil meaningful information using both standard methods and more recent, AI-based approaches, which capabilities does a company need to become a data-centric company, what are the fundamental boundaries in terms of compliance (i.e. DSGVO/GDPR) and challenges (i.e. ethical issues of data management).
Leadership and Management Skills Development
During the course of four semesters, participants will take the modules “Leadership and Management Skills I and II” in order to develop their management and leadership skills through intensive soft skills training. In addition to learning theoretical concepts, the participants develop their own skills through intensive workshops and role-plays. They learn to recognise their abilities, to build up their strengths, to develop strategies for action and explore how they can develop as responsible and motivating leaders.
Another highlight of the MBA curriculum are two international study trips. The first one-week study trip takes place in the third semester and leads the participants to New York City, into the heart of Manhattan, and is dedicated to the topic of Entrepreneurship and Innovation. In addition to various courses and company visits, the Study Trip also offers an exciting social and cultural programme.
The MBA programme concludes with an Outdoor Leadership Expedition on the Portuguese volcanic island of Madeira. During this leadership expedition, the students will have to prove their leadership skills under the very special circumstances of a large-scale outdoor expedition.