The Executive Master in Change Class of 2023 (Asia) started in October 2021 on the INSEAD campus in Singapore.
22 participants from 15 nationalities embarked together on a transformative journey towards change leadership, or, as some would say, the journey of a lifetime.
Who are the people in this class, and what are their dreams and motivations?
We caught up with a few of them to find out more.
"I thought, wouldn’t it be great to find a Masters which is really focused on the organisational aspects of transformation and change? The EMC was a perfect fit."
Digital and Electronic Lead
Kieran grew up in New Zealand and built his career in the United Kingdom before moving to Singapore.
"I have always wanted to do a Masters, but I was never entirely sure about a traditional MBA", says Kieran who works in the financial services sector.
"I work in a digital transformation role and have always been interested in the people puzzle linked to adoption of new technology and tools. I spoke with several friends who have completed MBAs and all of them spoke about the Organisational Behaviour components as being the most interesting."
"I thought, wouldn’t it be great to find a Masters which is really focused on the organisational aspects of transformation and change? The EMC was a perfect fit", he says.
Kieran describes his experience so far as "mind-expanding".
"The EMC is allowing me to reflect and assess how I want to be, how I would like others to be, how I impact the organisation and how it affects me. There’s a personal and professional transformation happening which is exciting", he shares.
"With every dot connected, I discovered a bit more about myself and I felt lighter in spirit."
Head of Finance and Investor Relations
Tracy is a private equity executive who holds a BA in Accounting and an MBA.
"In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, I started experiencing what I thought was a mid-life crisis", she shares.
Tracy decided to take a 10-month break from work to focus on herself and her family. She describes this period, during which she also enrolled in the EMC, as one of the most important transformations of her life.
"I had the time to reflect and make sense of my life – how did I become the person I am today, why did I behave the way I did in the past and why do I react in certain ways in certain situations", she says.
"The theories, concepts and tools taught in the EMC and diverse experiences shared by my EMC classmates all played a part in helping me connect the dots between my adult life and my childhood experiences.
As I connected these dots, I realised I was also unpacking a lot of emotional baggage from the past.
With every dot connected, I discovered a bit more about myself and I felt lighter in spirit."
"The EMC has great value helping me to understand myself, my colleagues and group dynamics better."
Managing Director, Logistics
Jens, who lives in Germany, decided to pursue a career in logistics as he had always had an interest in living abroad.
Through his work, he had the opportunity to spend 12 years in Korea, where he climbed the corporate ladder and also completed an MBA degree.
While looking for a new academic challenge, Jens came across the EMC programme.
"As logistics is all about the people, the EMC has great value for me helping me to understand myself, my colleagues and group dynamics better to become not only a better manager but also to improve as a person", he shares.
"The EMC programme is based on an excellent mix of independent studies, theoretical modules, readings, and papers that enable you to apply what you have learned on yourself and your environment", says Jens.
"Based on what I have experienced so far I would recommend the programme to anyone who is willing to honestly self-reflect in order to understand and improve oneself as well as all social interactions."
"I wanted to learn how to excel as a leader."
Clare is a consultant specialising in organisation design and innovation strategy for the digital financial services, blockchain, health care and higher education sectors.
Throughout her career so far, she has lived in six different countries, learnt three languages and changed roles and industries from being a clinical specialist in cancer treatments to leading accelerators for innovative blockchain projects.
"Whether treating cancer patients, managing a million-dollar portfolio of startups in emerging financial technologies, art or higher education, every project’s success relies heavily on people dynamics and managing different cultures," Clare observes.
"I wanted to learn how to excel as a leader in ways outside the box within this context."
"The necessity of struggling to find alternative strategies and ways of thinking are essential to any leader, especially when some of those flaws are personally encapsulated within our character or thought processes," she says.
"It would be impossible to grow as a leader without finding points of failure in order to improve upon them.
I am more conscious of my defenses and where they come from which is a tool that has enhanced my ability as a leader."