Check-in to Management: General Management for Pilots

Executive School of Management, Technology and Law

Executive School of Management, Technology and Law


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Who should attend

Pilots with a desire to enter the corporate world or make a career transition.

About the course

Understanding general management basics and strategy fundamentals is the first step for specialists towards a career in the corporate world. In this programme, professionals with a non-business background will learn the latest and most relevant management concepts, enabling them to engage in business discourses and position themselves in the long term as a competent corporate leader. This programme is specifically tailored to pilots who are planning a career shift or simply want to gain a second foothold in the corporate world. Unique advantages of the programme include peer-to-peer interaction, skills workshops, as well as a personalized coaching session to help participants determine their next career step.


This programme helps pilots succeed professionally and reposition themselves on the job market, for example with a middle management or project lead position outside an airline in any industry.

Programme Benefits

You will receive professional training from one of Europe’s leading business schools and tailored support during your personal change process:

  • You will be updated on the latest and most relevant management topics and strategy fundamentals
  • You will receive professional guidance for your career transition through skills workshops with the opportunity for conscious reflection on how to meet new challenges.
  • The programme is structured in seven modules, delivered virtually, plus pre-readings and transfer groups – to enable you to integrate your learning smoothly into your weekly schedule.
  • Our professional partners and coaches will help interested participants during and after the coursein their journey towards a new professional challenge

Course Structure

The programme is structured in 7 modules with a total workload of 90 hours spread out over a 2-month period. Every week consists of a 2.5-hour online input session, a 1-hour peer-exchange and a 2.5-hour skills workshop. Course preparation and follow-up work will require an approximately equal amount of time.

The modules take place virtually over Zoom and you will get access to the learning platform containing all relevant documents.

Content & Faculty

Kick-Off Session with Dr. Andreas Wittmer and Dr. Stephanie Schoss

During the first 1-hour session you will get to know the faculty, e-meet each other and clarify your expectations as well as the general learning objectives.

Change of Perspective – Insights from Prof. Dr. Peter Fankhauser, frm. CEO Thomas Cook

During this special session you will gain first-hand insights from Prof. Dr. Peter Fankhauser, former CEO of Thomas Cook. In his career, he was often confronted with difficult management decisions.

Learning Objectives:

  • Highs and lows of a CEO: you hardly ever meet all expectations from all stakeholders
  • The difficult relation between management and pilots
  • Resilience: How to keep it under pressure
  • Success and failure: How to get up and move forward again and learnings from both

Management System vs. Aviation System with Dr. Andreas Wittmer and Dr. Lüder Tockenbürger

During the first module you will discuss the basic challenges and questions of managing a complex organization on the basis of the new St. Gallen Management Model.

Learning objectives:

  • Know your strengths and weaknesses as pilots in an organizational rather than operational context.
  • Learn the most important principles of management.
  • Understand strategic management and organizational development in the context of process and people organizations.
  • Be able to reduce complexity and uncertainty in an organization by applying a management model.

Strategic Management with Prof. Dr. Erwin Hettich

This module deals with the question: What is strategy in general? You will learn how to develop and implement a strategy.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the factors separating good from bad strategies.
  • Learn the components and mechanics of the strategy process.
  • Be able to apply the following strategy tools:
    • SWOT
    • Five Forces
    • Business Modelling

Leadership with Prof. Dr. Ulrich Zwygart & Dr. Stephanie Schoss

You will learn how leaders can respond to new challenges in the age of digitalisation. The Programme addresses leadership from the perspectives of leading self, others and the organization.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand different leadership styles.
  • Learn how to develop your own leadership strengths.
  • Discover how to lead diverse people in different settings, online and in person.

HR Management with Prof. Dr. Antoinette Weibel

You will learn the most current theories in Human Resource Management (HRM), such as Positive People Management.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand how Positive People Management and Trust lead to organizational excellence.
  • Learn how HRM contributes to employee engagement and happiness.
  • Discover the secret to positive teamwork. Know what roles HR and Inclusive Leadership play.

Financial Management with Dr. Thorsten Truijens

During this module you will get the most current information on key tools and instruments in controlling and finance, including balance sheets, profit and loss statements, cash flow statements and financial key performance indicators.

Learning objectives:

  • Acquire an understanding of the most important financial data used to analyse company performance.
  • Be able to interpret financial data.
  • Know how financial key performance indicators (KPI) are linked to the business model.

Marketing Management with Prof. Dr. Christian Hildebrand

You will be introduced to core concepts of modern marketing management which will enable you to develop a customer-centric marketing strategy.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the definition, tools and objectives of marketing in general.
  • Be able to identify a company's market, its marketing environment and define its position within the market.
  • Learn about the latest developments in marketing resulting from digitalisation and new information technologies.

Skills workshops and Coaching with Dr. Mike Widmer and diverse coaches throughout the course on the topics of

  • Creating a CV suitable for the business world
  • Positioning yourself on LinkedIn
  • Strategies for job finding
  • Interview skills
  • Elevator Pitch, etc.


Thorsten Truijens

Thorsten Truijens Dr. oec. HSG, MBA Director of the Center for Financial Management After studying in Germany, the US and in Switzerland, Thorsten Truijens started his career in the controlling department of a multinational automotive company before working for a consulting firm. As director of ...

Andreas Wittmer

Professional Career Credit Suisse, Zurich, Investment Accounting Researcher, Eceonomics Department, Aarhus School of Business Lindberg International, Country Manager Switzerland and Benelux Research Associate at Institute for Public Services and Tourism Project Leader Institute für Systemic M...

Luder Tockenburger

Dr. Tockenbürger graduated from the University of St.Gallen, Switzerland (HSG), in business administration, with an emphasis on finance and accounting. He finished his doctoral studies in 1999 in the technology management specialist program. Since 2000, he has developed and conducted internationa...

Mike Widmer

Dr. Mike J. Widmer is passionate about intersecting technology, people and business. His multicultural background and international experience allow him to match people not only on a skill but more importantly on a cultural, attitude and values level. The science and art of executive search is wh...

Ulrich Zwygart

Ulrich F. Zwygart, Prof. Dr., Honorary Professor for General Management, University of St. Gallen former attorney-at-law and Major General (ret.) Managing Director / Chief Learning Officer for global companies such as Deutsche Bank and Zurich Insurance Group author of several leadership books w...

Stephanie Schoss

Stephanie Schoss is Director of Open Enrolment Programmes at the Executive School of Management, Technology and Law of the University of St. Gallen (ES-HSG). Stephanie studied Business and Economics at the Universities of St.Gallen, Harvard and the Singapore Management University. She is current...

Antoinette Weibel

Antoinette Weibel is Professor for Human Resources Management and director of the Institute for Work and Employment Research, University of St.Gallen. Her research focuses on Human Resources, Organizational Studies and Organizational Psychology. Her recent research projects center on stakeholder ...

Erwin Hettich

Prof. Dr. Erwin Hettich is Assistant Professor of Strategic Management and Head of the Strategy Lab at the Institute of Management and Strategy, University of St.Gallen. Previously, he worked in various positions and industries relating to strategy development, as well as a principal advisor in c...

Christian Hildebrand

Affiliation Professor Hildebrand is Assistant Professor of Marketing Analytics at the University of Geneva. Primary Research Areas Social Influence in Digital and Non-Digital Markets Consumer Decision Making and the Study of Choice Contribution Christian Hildebrand’s research is driven by ...

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Check-in to Management: General Management for Pilots at Executive School of Management, Technology and Law

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Full disclaimer.

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