Source: Copenhagen Business School
Promoted by Copenhagen Business School

Copenhagen Business School: Shaping responsible leaders

In an era marked by unprecedented global challenges, the role of responsible leaders has taken centre stage. Aware that success goes beyond financial gains, these leaders are navigating complex business landscapes while prioritising sustainability, ethics, and social impact. Copenhagen Business School (CBS) recognises the need for such leaders and has designed an MBA programme that explore the ins and outs of driving meaningful change in organisations and society at large.Spread over one intensive year, this general management MBA merges foundational concepts with the development of critical skills required by today’s leaders. It’s a programme that keeps students engaged and fulfilled — from as early as introduction week.

This is when students adapt to their new environment while participating in a range of social activities and building a strong network in the process. Once the programme commences, students embark on their own personalised paths based on the areas they find particularly interesting or especially beneficial to their careers. Four concentrations are up for selection: Digitalisation, Entrepreneurship, Finance or Governance and Sustainability.

Source: Copenhagen Business School

Source: Copenhagen Business School

Clearly, there’s something for everyone, hence why 90% of students come from outside of Denmark. Each typically has over five years of work experience from diverse industries. They bring their world-changing aspirations and leave their respective comfort zones to surround themselves with inspiration at CBS.

“The sustainability and responsible management aspect is a real core part of the programme,” says Admissions Manager Andrew Mellor. “Also, being in Denmark, we definitely walk the talk around sustainability; it’s part of the culture here.”

Denmark is serious about sustainability and responsible management, providing an ideal backdrop for studying such topics. The Danish culture places a premium on equality, social welfare, and environmental stewardship. Committed to the defining issue of our time, its policies and initiatives promote sectors such as renewable energy development, circular economy strategies, and green innovation. Doing business here means caring just as much for the planet and its people, as seen in its many companies that prioritise ethical conduct, transparency, and stakeholder engagement.

“When it comes to sustainable lifestyle, business and economy, Scandinavia takes centre stage, and Copenhagen brings it all within reach,” says CBS MBA graduate Prajakta Patil from India, who is now a Product Marketing Lead at Abzu. “It’s an amazing city to live in, with a great working culture that’s rooted in equity, balance and minimalism.”

Where better to practise everything learned on campus? Hands-on leadership experience is made possible for CBS MBA students thanks to the Leadership Discovery Process (LDP). It is an essential element of their programme, seeing students step outside the classroom to put knowledge into practice through leadership simulation exercises both individually and in teams. Conducted fully offsite, lessons span cognitive coaching, the functioning of the brain, team dynamics, situational leadership, and human understanding. To ensure optimum effectiveness, the LDP is conducted and overseen by the Implement Consulting Group, which specialises in leadership training. Throughout, students can expect to discuss decision-making with thriving executives from various Scandinavian firms.

“It’s very reflexive,” explains Andrew Mellor. “We want you to get to know yourself a lot better as a leader after that particular module.”

The course did wonders for graduate Alistair Edwards, who, through participation, mastered both the rigours of leading and the intricacies of supporting leaders. “I learned a lot about how I respond to stressful situations as well as how you can maintain the leadership mindset even when you’re under pressure,” he says. “When you strip away all the softness of the classroom and the theoretical aspect to it, it’s a test of how you actually implement the leadership skills you’ve picked up.”

Source: Copenhagen Business School

Source: Copenhagen Business School

Today, a responsible leader through and through, Edwards is the Associate Global Portfolio Director at Novo Nordisk. He believes that the MBA programme opened his eyes to the importance of driving innovation, identifying the right stakeholders and effectively selling an organisation’s mission and purpose. To him, responsible leadership is all about guiding a team through a collective journey.

“Classes specifically include an element of leading a team, it’s infused into the DNA of the MBA at CBS. Underneath, there are the details around exactly what it means to different industries too,” he says. “You have to think about leadership from a personal level, from a sustainability level, as well as from an environmental and social perspective, and that’s actually quantified and factored into assessing performance across the organisation. So there’s a very real impact to it.”

Thanks to this approach, the CBS impact Edwards speaks of has accelerated the careers of many graduates. Riya Sachdev from India is a Management Consultant at the Implement Consulting Group. Camila Boada from Columbia is a Senior Strategy Consultant at Danske Bank. Kelsey Frandsen from the US went from intern to Corporate Sustainability Specialist at Pandora. Phil Hanson, also from the US, is the CEO of Queue-it.

Sound like the progression you’re after? Connect with the Copenhagen MBA team here or download the official CBS MBA brochure here.

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A representative of DBS will be in Canada in August, go see them in Toronto on Saturday 26th, and Montreal on Tuesday 29th!