We changed as we studied and we studied as we changed.
Why did you decide to do the EMC programme at INSEAD?
I felt that the programme would offer me the opportunity to reflect on the different dimensions of my future role and responsibilities as a management coach. A deeper understanding of the key drivers promoting change on both the individual as well as the organisational level will add a new level of dimension in terms of theoretic models and method to my base of practical experiences. This will transform into concrete value as I impact individuals and organisations as moderator, coach and advisor. The clarification of my own role prior to any intervention is especially important to me when interacting in the multiple dimensions of a family company.
Did the programme meet or exceed your expectations?
The programme has met my expectations with respect to the quality and diversity of faculty and my classmates. Having said that, I have to say that my expectations were high and for those who know me personally, this does not come as a surprise. Consequently, I carefully screened international options for executive education related to coaching and consulting before making my choice. On an academic level, I found what I aimed for at INSEAD. The biggest gift – a roller coaster experience and until today a treasure trove of life-changing memories – has been the unique approach of the EMC to invite students to take their life journey as a clinical material into the classroom. We changed as we studied and we studied as we changed, in a unique and safe space. This experience by far exceeded my expectations.
Please share with us your class experience!
The curriculum was one of the decisive qualities of the EMC. The underlying concept, starting with focusing on the self and then carefully enlarging the perspective, moving to the self in relation with others, system dynamics, leadership, team and group dynamics and ending with the focus on organisations, has served as a stable handrail throughout the programme. Proven quality in the overall concept and innovation, sometimes even risks during individual sessions provided for an excellent balance. They say that you learn most from your classmates and this is so true!
What was one particular module that made the greatest impact on you?
I had several poignant moments of personal learning and I found that the impact of the modules kept changing alongside my day-to-day life experiences. In the words of one of the EMC Directors: there were many "aha" moments rather than one "wow" moment.
How has the EMC changed your perspectives?
From a professional point of view, I am profoundly enjoying what I am currently doing and I owe this to a large extent to the learning and insight I gained during my time with the EMC. But more importantly, I had the chance to revisit some of the choices I made in my life and challenge them for the quality of their contribution to my life today, which was the starting point for some very meaningful changes.
How different is the EMC as compared to other masters programmes?
You may come in as an executive, but if you have the guts to let go of that shiny mask and armor, you have the chance of a lifetime to become a scholar and practitioner of meaningful relations both with yourself and with those around you. Additionally, key differentiators which made me apply specifically to INSEAD include the unique approach to integrate clinical and organisational psychology (a concept I have not found elsewhere in the same conceptual quality) and, equally important, the quality and diversity of carefully selected classmates.
What advice would you give potential EMC participants?
Be realistic with the energy you need to invest in order to learn and not just earn a degree. Talk with your partner and family and let them know that you are going to be on a serious adventure that will require support and at times a lot of understanding from those who love you. Finally, throw yourself into this experience without any boundaries to make the most of the deep learning you will experience.