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10 Years Executive Education

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Executive Education Center celebrates ten-year anniversary with 150 guests

Ten years of Executive Education at the TUM School of Management marks a major milestone, and a reason to celebrate. On Monday, 21 November, 2016, our festive anniversary event brought together the Technical University’s executive board, the dean of the TUM School of Management, as well as professors, practical lecturers, mentors, alumni, and current participants of all programs.

We would like to use this occasion to give special thanks to the founding partners of our inaugural program of the Executive MBA: Bertelsmann Foundation, Daimler Fund, and Heinz Nixdorf Foundation. The constant efforts of the Executive Education Board, which make our practice-oriented Executive Education programs possible in the first place, also deserve honorable mention.

Due to massive attendance – over 150 guests came to congratulate – the evening festivities including the Leadership Symposium “Leading towards High Performance: Lessons from Different Settings” had to be moved to the brand-new TUM Entrepreneurship Research Institute, opened in 2015.

Festivities opened with a keynote address by TUM School of Management dean Prof. Dr. Gunther Friedl who looked back on the humble beginnings: While the first class of EMBA students started their classes on wooden chairs in a basement, the EEC’s new facilities now consist of 600qm including several seminar and group work rooms. Prof. Dr. Friedl also looked into what the future holds: TUM School of Management is hoping to accomplish two international accreditations in 2017.

The attendees were also welcomed by TUM vice president Dr. Hannemor Keidel who had been involved in the EEC’s activities many years ago. She emphasized the significance of the engagement of founders, mentors and alumni as major pillars of the Executive Education programs.

Next, the Leadership Symposium opened with an introduction by Prof. Dr. Claudia Peus, Vice Dean of Executive Education. She highlighted the importance of exchange between science and practice, as it was then again demonstrated throughout the symposium.

The panel discussion on “Leadership & Entrepreneurship,” featuring Jochen Engert (Managing Director & Founder Flixbus) and Marcel de Vries (Managing Director Limango) emphasized the importance of leadership guidelines – those need to be clearly communicated. Another important take-away from the two rapidly expanding start-ups was the hiring of specialized employees once a specific company size is reached. Furthermore, the two entrepreneurs concluded that in start-ups, the desire to accomplish something in a dynamic surrounding paired with enthusiasm about the product are more important in hiring decisions than the salary.

Major General of the German Armed Forces Achim Lidsba called for strong leadership personalities. Values such as empathy, human dignity, honesty and respect are among those traits. A leader should now the concerns and needs of their employees, both at work and in their private life.

As the key to “Leadership in Large-Scale Enterprises,” Siemens board member Janina Kugel emphasized life-long learning and flexible responses to change. Due to the rapid speed in today’s world, agile leadership is vital – depending on the situation one can be leader, team member or mentee.

The round table talk, moderated by Prof. Peus, saw lively discussions between Holger Feist (Messe München), Dr. Christian Lawrence (Munich Re), Marcel de Vries, and General Lidsba about for instance the competitiveness of German business compared to their peers in Silicon Valley – here value orientation and data protection were mentioned as advantages compared to the US. The selection of executives is an additionally big challenge for companies. A similar set of values and behavior in dilemma situations were named as selection criteria. Lidsba emphasized that character development is a process therefore, not only intellect, but also emotional components should be looked at.

Afterwards, the festive part of the evening commenced to celebrate the anniversary with attendees sharing their personal memories and milestones from ten years of Executive Education at TUM School of Management.

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