Comprehensive course analysis
Who should attend
- CEOs and top executives at small to medium-sized companies
- Division or business unit leaders within larger organizations
- Executives with at least 10 years of management experience — from any industry and any country
About the course
Discover business growth strategies and build a stronger company designed to sustain progress, scale management, and facilitate market expansion.
For decades, this program has provided guidance and strategic frameworks for executives leading in both challenging turbulent eras and in times of prosperity. The curriculum enables CEOs, founders, and those leading divisions in large organizations to navigate uncharted territory and sustain long-term future growth, in any economic climate.
You’ll gain exposure to leading research happening at Stanford’s world-renowned Center for Entrepreneurial Studies and identify engines that can drive or inhibit growth. And through case studies, visits from guest speakers, and peer interactions with other senior leaders, you’ll hear and share stories of success and failure.
Identify factors that drive or inhibit growth, and focus on leadership skills and management systems needed to operate businesses more efficiently.
- Build tools to foster and sustain an entrepreneurial organizational culture.
- Learn how to put senior-level managers in place to handle operations, so you can focus on higher-level vision and strategy.
- Understand a leader's role and responsibilities in facilitating a company's growth.
- Align your company's growth strategy with your organization's culture and environment.
- Put your new knowledge, concepts, and frameworks into practice at your workplace real-time while simultaneously engaging with other participants and building personal networks
As you grow, how do you balance the need to apply business discipline with the desire to stay entrepreneurial? How do you handle pressure for growth on the part of equity partners? And how do you scale management systems?
These are the questions that rapidly growing companies face every day. These are the questions explored in the Executive Program for Growing Companies. It’s four weeks, packed with thought-provoking curriculum, real business challenges, and a focus on the strategic leadership skills needed to drive and sustain growth.
The Business Challenge Exercise
You will have the opportunity to submit details about a growth-related strategic challenge that you’re facing. During the program, under the guidance of a faculty mentor, groups of participants from noncompeting industries will apply their experience and new learning to propose solutions to each business challenge. This “living” document also allows you to update your business challenges with learning from the program as a post-program reference.
You will discuss the cases and readings with fellow executives in preparation for the day's classes. Reviewing course materials and engaging in dialogue with your peers will enrich the learning experience. Study groups will submit their collective responses prior to the respective class session. These responses give the faculty context and insight into the mindset of the cohort, allowing for deeper dialogue in class sessions. Study groups will also provide participants with an informal setting in which to learn from one another and an opportunity to network. Each group's composition reflects the diversity of individuals in the class.
Silicon Valley and global leaders, founders, and funders provide a practitioner’s perspective that augments the faculty-led class sessions. There will be opportunities to engage with guest speakers in real-time.
Strategic Leadership of Growing Companies in Dynamic Environments
This set of sessions takes the perspective of the general manager and is concerned with leadership of growing companies in highly dynamic environments. The major purpose of the sessions is to sharpen your capacity for strategic thinking and to provide frameworks to help company leaders set direction and lead the strategy-making process in sometimes turbulent environments.
Winning Through Innovation
Why do industry leaders often lose their innovative edge, and how can they retain it? Research and consulting work over the past 10 years show that short-term success may actually increase the chances of long-term failure. To avoid this “success syndrome,” managers must be effective at managing incremental change and leading revolutionary or discontinuous change.
The purpose of this set of sessions is to explore how managers can balance this tension and use the cultures in their organizations as a potential competitive advantage.
The emphasis will be on thinking about culture as a social control system defined by norms that are linked to critical strategic objectives and can be managed through executive leadership. These sessions will develop a framework for diagnosing and understanding both the statics and the dynamics of organizational culture.
Research Statement William Barnett studies competition among organizations and how organizations and industries evolve globally. He is conducting a large-scale project that seeks to explain why and how some firms grow rapidly in globalizing markets. His prior research includes studies of how stra...
Research Statement Steve Callander’s research interests lie at the intersection of business, politics, and society. As a researcher, he uses the tools of game theory to build models of political and economic institutions (legislatures, bureaucracies, markets, etc.) to understand how they work, ho...
Research Statement Professor Rao studies collective action within organizations and in markets. His research and by implication, his teaching, revolves around scaling up mobilization, innovation, and talent in organizations. Teaching Statement Professor Rao teaches courses on Scaling up Excellenc...
Research Statement Sarah A. Soule's research examines state and organizational-level policy change and diffusion, and the role social movements have on these processes. She has recently published papers on how protest impacts multi-national firm-level decisions regarding divestment in Burma, and ...
Research Statement Baba Shiv's research expertise is in the area of neuroeconomics, with specific emphasis on the role of neural structures related to emotion and motivation in shaping decisions and experiences. His recent work examines the interplay of the brain’s "liking" and "wanting" systems ...
Research Statement Robert Burgelman carries out longitudinal field-based research on the role of strategy in firm evolution. He has examined how companies enter into new businesses (through corporate entrepreneurship and internal corporate venturing as well as through acquisition) and leave other...
Research Statement George Foster’s research and teaching includes entrepreneurship/early-stage companies; financial analysis, especially in commercial disputes; and sports business management. His recent research includes asset creation and destruction, global entrepreneurship, and the role of fi...
Research Statement Professor Whang's research interest is in supply chain management and the economics of information systems. He studied how demand information may be distorted in a supply chain, and what impacts a secondary market (where retailers exchange excess inventories) has on a supply ch...
Research Statement Professor O’Reilly’s research spans studies of leadership, organizational demography and diversity, culture, executive compensation and organizational innovation and change. Teaching Statement Professor O’Reilly has taught courses for MBAs and executives in organizational innov...
Research Statement Professor Huang’s research focuses on consumer motivation. Her work in this area has been programmatic, documenting how consumers have different concerns in different stages of goal pursuit, and thus derive motivation in very distinct ways. Professor Huang uses experiments to t...
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