Business Acumen for High-Potential Executives

Ann Arbor, MI, 03 Mar - 12 Mar 2015

Program Description

As a high-potential leader striving to succeed at senior levels of management, you must demonstrate advanced decision-making skills and sophisticated insight into what it takes to maximize shareholder and customer value in an increasingly complex business environment.

In this program, you will delve deeply into your organization's key differentiators and business model, and devise competitive strategies for your organization's future. You'll develop effective management strategies to integrate functional disciplines and diverse perspectives to create value. And you will gain the leadership tools to assess situations in a decisive manner, lead through complexity, and adapt quickly and effectively to change. You'll emerge with new competencies to advance results for your stakeholders faster, more efficiently, and more strategically. Global issues and application will be emphasized.

Program Highlights

• In-depth analysis of your core business model helps you identify and make plans to capture growth opportunities.

• During sessions taught by two or more faculty members, you will see how different business functions can be brought together to solve organizational problems

• You will question assumptions, exchange new ideas, explore cutting-edge concepts, and pursue best practices alongside peers from diverse organizations and countries in class discussion, small-group projects, and case analyses.

• Team-based exercises give you the skills to deploy new concepts upon return to the office. You will identify a challenge within your organization, and working with fellow participants and faculty, apply learned concepts to it to develop a solution.

Quick Tips

Shape Rather than Forecast Tomorrow's Business

By Prof. Gordon Hewitt

Competitive landscapes are shifting faster and with more complexity than ever before. What does it take to become a value creation leader? To do so, you must:

Expand Your View of Competition. Expect significant innovations to come from outside your traditional industry and competitors. The shift to modern smart phones was led by Apple, Google, and Samsung, not previous market leaders Nokia or Motorola.

Avoid a Predictable Strategic Agenda. Many corporate strategic plans are based on playing the existing competitive game better. But in today's markets, competitive games and rules are open to change. Becoming more efficient at the wrong game is not smart strategy. Your agenda should focus on new-game value creation.

Think Beyond Your Structure. New game opportunities often span traditional organizational boundaries. Instead of changing the organization chart, think more broadly. To create business and industry innovations, you need to create new collaborative systems across the organization and challenge your dominant logic.

Excelling on Autopilot

By Prof. Ray Reilly

Snap decisions, intuition, and gut feelings - you wouldn't consider these sustainable business practices, would you? Maybe so, but there's an asterisk. Smart, quick thinking and execution that seems automatic can indeed become second nature, but it takes work to get there. Here's how to be both quick and conscientious:

Go in with a game plan. Developing a solid framework for understanding business is crucial to informed decision making. Otherwise, your actions won't have a foundation.

Think it through. In addition to a framework of understanding, you need a structured thought process for assessing problems. Without one, your decisions will lack continuity and consistency.

Rinse, repeat, and reap the benefits. Over time, applying these formalized frameworks and processes becomes as natural as riding a bike: call it "informed intuition."


Who Should Attend

  • High-potential managers and directors with 10+ years of management experience who are recognized as tomorrow's leaders and preparing for a role that requires a multidisciplinary perspective and proven leadership skills.

Takeaways & Tools

  • Frameworks to hone, refine, and realign your current business models, drive sustainable growth, and maximize shareholder value
  • Frameworks to make critical business decisions swiftly and efficiently
  • Knowledge and leadership capabilities to integrate functional disciplines and diverse stakeholder perspectives
  • You'll develop a customized action plan to solve the toughest challenges in your organization.
  • Individualized follow-up helps propel your success after the program.

Learn more and daily schedule


Cheri Alexander
  • Adjunct Lecturer in Management and Organizations, Executive Director Corporate Learning
Ray Reilly
  • Professor of Business Administration
John Branch
  • Lecturer of Marketing and Strategy
  • Faculty Associate, Center for Russian and East European Studies
Paula Caproni
  • Lecturer of Management and Organizations
Gordon Hewitt
  • Adjunct Professor of Business Administration
Aneel Karnani
  • Associate Professor of Strategy
Contact Us
Ross School of Business
Ross Academic Services

Alumni Career Services
(734) 764-1372


Career Services
(734) 764-1372


Ross Helpdesk


Ross Executive Education
+1 734-763-1000

Front Desk
Ann Arbor - 734.647.3400
Los Angeles - 310.617.4750

Nicole Watson
Technology & Operations

Ana Austin

Ann Arbor Office

Administrative Office


Kaci Kegler

Heather Byrne, Managing Director

Joyce Buchanan, Executive Secretary

Tesenga Smith

Rachel Hammond

Paul Kirsch, Managing Director


Lillian Chen, Research Area Specialist

Stewart Thornhill
Executive Director
(734) 647-4192




Tuition & Fees



• Tuition

• Accommodations in Michigan Ross' first-class, full-service Executive Learning and Conference Center (pending availability)

• Continental breakfasts, lunches, coffee/snack breaks, and selected dinners in our exclusive Executive Dining Room

• Program materials and resources

Fee is payable in advance in US dollars and is subject to change. See our Cancellation, Transfer and Substitution Policy.