Diploma in Strategy and Innovation
It is the end of January, and I am at the Learntec trade fair, one of the largest trade fairs for learning technology in Europe. I am excited and a little nervous. This is the first time since I joined my new company CBTL, a boutique vendor in the digital learning space as head of strategy and innovation that we are publicly presenting our new strategy and company narrative to our existing and new clients. In a few minutes, the doors of the fair will open, and for a moment I reflect on my personal journey of the last year…
Almost exactly one year ago I first stepped into Saïd Business School to start my Diploma in Strategy and Innovation. Back then I had an international role in Learning and Development for a global pharmaceutical company. My original motivation for applying for the diploma was that I wanted to learn more about key concepts and theories of strategy so I could continue to be a valuable thought partner to the leaders in my company that I was training and coaching to lead in a volatile business environment. The first module of the diploma already provided great input on this and I was already glad I had joined; the following modules then really changed the way I thought about business and the potential role that I could play in it. We discussed how markets evolve by creating narratives and stories, reconfiguring business relationships, creation of networks and so much more.
And so when the time came for me to start a new chapter in my own career story and explore different career options, the new perspectives I had gained at Oxford Saïd helped me to be both open minded for, and curious about, career opportunities outside of HR and it also meant that I had something else to offer to potential employers who were looking for innovative strategies in the field of learning and development.
And so here I am, at Learntec, and I realize how my perspective has changed. Whereas in the past, I would have analyzed the market and the players in terms of their products and offerings, competition and pricing, I am now thinking of potential partnerships and ecosystems, networks and collaboration opportunities.
Two weeks later, one of our potential new network partners I met at Learntec comes and visits us in our Munich office. And as he leaves after two hours of sketching out possible partnership models based on new technology he introduced me to, he thanks me for initiating the connection at the trade fair, noting that the type of business collaboration we have been discussing is still unusual for our industry in Germany.
But while moments like this keep reminding me how much I profit from what I learned at Saïd Business School, the greatest thing of all is that I am not alone on my journey, that I have a network of colleagues and friends that, even though the Diploma is now formally finished, I still regularly talk to and meet in person, for advice, feedback, networking and simply because we really enjoy each other’s company. I am immensely grateful for that and I can’t wait to see what the next chapter of our story will look like.Back to top of article