After completing five classes at UVA, five classes at Lingnan, and one intensive class at ESADE, we are settling in for five more. With perfect, 70s-and-sunny weather in Barcelona, it’s absolutely a challenge to not daydream of the beach the entire time we’re in class (just being honest!), but luckily, ESADE’s great professors and super interesting class topics help keep us in the moment every day.
Our first week of classes at ESADE was completely committed to the intensive “Doing Business in Europe” class, which covered a lot of information about the organization of Europe politically and demographically, and then how those factors affect business on the continent. It was especially interesting that our class had these discussions in these times of Brexit, a situation that promises to shake things up across Europe and test the existing institutions.
Some of the other classes are subjects that most students have never committed a full class to before. We recently started Innovation and Entrepreneurship, a course that aims to inspire and empower us to become an entrepreneur or manager in a dynamic context. The class is designed to expose us to key areas of managing innovation projects and starting and growing a new venture. We do this by working in teams to develop our own entrepreneurial topics (nope, I won’t tell you what they are- can’t give away our moneymaking secrets yet!)
Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility, another course, is especially relevant in today’s world, as we confront global warming and climate change issues. In the business arena, one big question is how to reconcile free-market capitalism with the need for more sustainable business practices. How can we translate real-world challenges into future business opportunities? Strategically and tactically, how do we, as managers, move along the path to sustainability? These are all questions that we explore through cases, current news, debates, guest speakers, and group projects.
Our Business Simulation class is an interactive experience integrating Business Administration and Strategic Management’s most relevant concepts (specifically focusing on the areas of Corporate Management and Business Policy) through a popular business simulation software program. In teams, we will be managing our companies from the C-Suite perspective, and all of our decisions will play out in a responsive way through the software, which also takes the other teams’ decision into account in our virtual market. This class promises to be very unique in that it provides real, quick feedback and results to the business decisions that we make every week. No pressure, eh?
Finally, we will be studying Global Brand Management and Cross-Border M&As and Strategic Alliances. Both are teamwork intensive classes and are based off of casework. Global Brand Management investigates marketing techniques and programs as developed and implemented on a multinational or global scale. We examine global branding strategies for large and small companies, but also in regions and countries at various economic development stages. Cross-Border M&A is designed to teach us about the complex world of strategic alliances as an integrated process, rather than just watertight compartments of finance, business policy, and HR.
So, yes, things will be pretty busy in the last two months (!) of the program. But the sun is also out, tapas abound, and the beach is there to make it the best ending of an already great year!
-Written by Sierra Prochna