Invest In Globalization

Sophia Leong is the Director of the Telfer Executive MBA Progams. In 2017, CEO Magazine ranked the Telfer Executive MBA program as No. 1 in the world.

Global practical relevance: living those three words

Barbara Orser

Sophia Leong

Every year, candidates in the Executive MBA program participate in two international trips, working with Canadian companies seeking to expand their market internationally. I work with the Canadian ambassador or high commissioner at the destination (which our candidates choose during a course called International Market Evaluation and Selection). This year, we went to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, (read the blogs here) with 10 executives from six companies, including three CEOs. We work with them hands on; it’s as if our team and program is an extension of their company. We divide our candidates into six teams, and each team works with a client company to move their market strategy forward.  For example, we worked with the Royal Canadian Mint on a strategy to build a channel to sell more Canadian gold coins and bullion in Asia Pacific. We worked with Larus Technologies, a software company that wanted to expand its market in Japan. It went extremely well; one of the team members that worked with Larus is now going to lead a spinoff company, based on the success of our trip.

We’ve also begun a project called Global Mindset, in which six students in their fourth year of the Telfer Bachelor of Commerce program join us as analysts for each of the teams working on International Market Evaluation and Selection. They work from our facility, and take that course with the Executive MBA cohort. Not only are they using their analytical and research skillset, they are expanding their network. They make connections with individuals who could eventually hire them. We’re seeding for the future – we want these students to really understand what the Executive MBA program is all about.

Nothing that we do with our candidates is make-believe; there are no businesses cases here. It’s a very innovative and extremely powerful program when it comes to learning and acquiring skillsets.

Our first year cohort travelled to Silicon Valley (read the blogs here) to work with leaders in San Francisco, Palo Alto and San Jose where they learn first-hand about wealth creation and new business models.

We also have a partnership with the Executive MBA program at China’s Sun Yat-sen University. Every two years, they’ll send their Executive MBA candidates here to Ottawa to spend a week with us, where we create networking sessions for them. Nine of our candidates also work on special projects with two Chinese companies in Guangdong. The whole process mirrors and mimics what happens in the business world.

Recognition by CEO Magazine is one thing, but I measure our impact and innovation by the outcomes for clients. I see the success in the incredible transformation and growth of our Executive MBA candidates, their willingness to refer others, and to become clients. We have alumni who become clients, travel with us and are great ambassadors for our program. The fact that executives travel with us – that in itself is a testament to the value they receive from our program.


CEO no1

CEO Magazine Ranking

CEO Magazine has released its 2017 ranking of the top Global Executive MBA programs and has ranked the Telfer School of Management’s Executive MBA program #1 in the world.
Kuala Lumpur

Cultivating Guanxi

Telfer Executive MBA hosts Executives from Sun Yat-Sen University Business School Executive MBA for a one-week academic exchange program.