Mr Kirt Wood at Kedge Global MBA

Mr Kirt Wood at Kedge Global MBA

1. What is an Executive MBA, how is it different from other MBA formats?

An Executive MBA defines itself by the level of professional and managerial experience (an average of 15 years) of its participants.  Executive MBAs deal with those seeking lasting change and a second professional life.  Many are seeking key positions at the level of the Executive board, while others have more entrepreneurial ambitions.  Executive MBA cohorts are interested in issues of complexity and influence.  As senior managers they can capitalise on their rich and extensive experience far better than full-time MBA participants.  Executive MBA graduates are well-positioned to build and galvanise both local and international networks at the highest levels.

2. Why should a candidate choose to study their EMBA in Europe?

Today, Europe is home to 30% of the most successful companies in the world (159 out of 500 – Fortune). Europe is centrally located between North America, the Middle East and Asia.  Europe is traditionally very open to international diversity, which is an essential factor for global success.  Europe also boasts many of the leading business schools in the world. As a consequence, European MBAs see genuine international diversity in both student and faculty populations.  European business schools welcome new perspectives and international approaches while incorporating best practices favoured in the US.

3. In your experience, how often do EMBA students in Europe get sponsorship from their employers?

At Kedge Global MBA, 30-50% are fully or partially sponsored by third parties. This excludes, of course, those who prefer to finance their own programmes because they are looking for change, as well as those who are pursuing entrepreneurial projects.  More and more European companies are beginning to see long-term strategic value in developing their management through Executive MBA programmes.

Read: Lonely Island or Unexplored Continent. Differences between the MBA and the EMBA

4. How diverse and international are EMBA classes in Europe?

The Kedge Global MBA is 69% international in its participant make up. 56.5% of permanent faculty are international (non-French). Among European Executive programmes, Kedge remains one of the most internationalised.  Participants are required to undertake at least two international business seminars, many to emerging market countries and 7 of the 11 Specialisation Majors also include internationalised modules. Most MBA participants have travelled and lived abroad and have strong experiences worldwide. 

5. How is studying an EMBA programme in Europe beneficial to one’s global/international career?

It is impossible to consider an Executive MBA in today’s world without placing it in a global context – a fundamental idea for the Kedge Global MBA. All Executives are confronted with issues reaching well beyond a single national border in virtually every sector. 

The Kedge Global MBA is entirely international in scope.  Taught exclusively in English and comprised of Executives from all over the world, the programme boasts a highly internationalised faculty as well as drawing upon educational talent from every corner of the world.  Kedge requires Executives to undertake two international business seminars (India, Dubai, Brazil, Russia, US, South Africa, China, etc.) over the course of their MBA.  For 13 years, Kedge has run its MBA on four campuses and, in particular, in Shanghai, China.  In addition, course content always focusses on international scenarios.  Executives target the programme for its in-depth and internationalised approach.

As a consequence, Executives develop very broad international networks and opportunities, while also developing their capacities to deal with complex international issues within the context of their careers, and have the opportunity to grow and come to know the world first-hand. This places them in a position to undertake positions that are of enormous consequence in the corporate world and reap the benefits in terms of remuneration and responsibility over the long term.

6. Can you cite some examples of what candidates have gone on to do post-graduation?

Here is a list of some of the positions currently held by our graduates:

Senior management:

  • Odile Vernaud, DAF at Haribo
  • Franck Magarian, Vice-President Procurement CMA-CGM
  • Pierre-Antoine Aubourg, Head of Rotors & Transmissions Engineering, Airbus Helicopters
  • Gael Peron, President, Charter Medical, Ltd (USA)
  • Kara Rosenberg, Senior Consultant, Sia Partners (NYC)
  • Vincent Leleu, CEO France & China, Metaulding
  • Sabine Chamla, Vice-President Communications & Change Management, Sogerma (EADS)


  • Irfan Ghauri, founder/CEO, Parkego
  • Gregoire Guignon, founder/CEO, SailEasy
  • Pierre-Yves Anglaret, founder/CEO, Private Consultancy

a. How many students return to Executive jobs with their previous employers?

Executive MBAs, for the most part, evolve into more strategic positions within their companies.  A small percentage decide, during or after their MBA, to change companies. They do not rely on the MBA to make such transitions for them, but instead leverage the MBA experience to develop new opportunities and grow their options through new networks and skillsets.  A key element of Executive coaching is guiding participants throughout their decision-making process.  Often, the international exposure is key to opening up significant movement into positions that are global in scope.

b. How many students embark on entrepreneurial ventures upon graduation?

Virtually all Executive MBAs consider entrepreneurial ideas.  However, only the unique few ultimately decide to engage in creating a new business.  Many Executive MBAs place themselves in a position to consult and diversify their professional outreach.  Combined with the EMBA Entrepreneurship specialisation, Kedge offers MBAs a business nursery as well as a start-up lab to work with entrepreneurs in planning and developing their business plans and ideas as well as provide funds to entrepreneurial projects showing strong promise.  This results in multiple successful start-up companies created by Kedge Global MBA graduates every year.

Read: 4 Things You Absolutely Need to Accomplish in Your Career Before the EMBA

7. What is the main focus of your programme’s curriculum? Is it general management, entrepreneurship, finance?

The Kedge Global MBA focuses on strong general management fundamentals with 15 core modules.  In addition, participants may choose from 11 different specialisations (Brand Marketing, Finance, Innovation, Entrepreneurship, Talent Management, Maritime & Transport, Strategic Sourcing, International Management, Natural Resource Management, Wine & Spirits and Corporate Social Responsibility) across our four campuses worldwide.  EMBAs then choose two International Business Seminars, prepare throughout their programme, a unique and individualised Business Development Project and undergo at least 14 hours of individual Executive Coaching in order to design and succeed in their ‘post MBA evolution’.

8. Networking is a big part of graduate management education. How big of a part does it play in your EMBA programme? Is networking in a European EMBA different from other settings?

Networking is certainly one of the most important reasons that Executives choose to do an MBA.  Executive MBAss have successful careers already.  However, for many, they know that by building networks internationally and locally, they create greater opportunity and find exposure to much more than they would in their current situations.  Kedge actively supports and creates opportunities for MBAs to travel, meet each other as well as new corporate and academic networks around the world.  Additionally, Kedge works closely with MBAs and helps them leverage these networks over the long term.  Kedge carefully selects the size and nature of participants into its intakes.  The programme can be delivered across four international campuses expressly and it is designed to develop the aspect of networks, close relationships, collaboration and team-spirit.

9. Europe is very sensitive to gender equality. Many countries have a quota for women in executive positions, and not too long ago the debate about women in business made its way to the European Parliament. How well does your programme accommodate the business women of tomorrow?

The Kedge Global MBA does not practise positive discrimination nor set quotas for women.  We strive, logically, to encourage women on equal footing with male participants to achieve their highest potential.  Our EMBA women are confident, organised and determined, but they also have clear competencies, which allow them to advance in the “man’s world” of business.  Kedge offers scholarships for women with the sole purpose of assuring balance in the participant composition.  The Kedge Global MBA is regularly about 70% male and 30% female. The programme’s flexible modular format is adapted for busy working mothers and that is a key attraction for women.  Uniquely, the Executive Coaching has great impact on our women participants.  Coaches regularly address with them issues concerning breaking the glass-ceiling.  Kedge follows the values: Create – Care – Share.  Perhaps considered feminine values, our Executive women are most capable of espousing these values and bringing true meaning to them throughout their programme.

Learn more about the Kedge Global Executive MBA here

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