I remember my fist visit to Henley as a DL MBA student, which was at this time of year back in 1994. Aside from the grand drive to the front entrance, what impressed me about the place was a sense of stately courtesy, quiet bustle and what felt like layer upon layer of tried and trusted procedures and programmes. My guess, and it is just a guess, is that were I to attend my first workshop now, in 2006, I might form exactly the same first impressions. There is something quite reassuring about that, I suppose.
However, I also know that, busily, if mostly behind the scenes, people have been working on a lot of changes. Now as we move into the autumn, these will begin to manifest themselves and you will begin to see the benefits. Some, such as the strengthening of the faculty into Schools of Thought, you already know something about. There are others that you may never be aware of, such as the operational reorganisation of the IT support, the teams of administrators, and other databases and systems behind the programme you are on. Still others, such as the planned improvements in study channels and development of the MBA curriculum itself, will be experienced over the coming 12-18 months. As they are rolled out, I will endeavour to keep you all informed.
This month's newsletter precedes an October full of DL MBA workshops at the College, with every Intake from 27 to the new arrivals 33 spending some time here. Intake 33, which will also have a group on the Project Management MBA, is looking very much like meeting target numbers.
Follow-up on Annual Questionnaire
I have asked the Course Administrators - Susan, Natalie and Charlotte - to post on each intake's eLearning area (for Intakes pre 29, in the 'Administration' area, and for 29 onwards in 'Programme Information') a Word document which summarises all the quantitative and qualitative results from the annual questionnaire. I gave you some of the data from this in last month's newsletter, but this is a fuller picture. Extra copies will be circulated via email to the Course Reps and added to the ''Matters Arising" in November's Course Reps meeting.
Optional Skills Workshops - more information
Our plans for November 18th and 19th are now complete. Just to remind you, on November 18th and 19th there will be a chance to attend up to four different half-day workshop sessions on a variety of topics. These are An Introduction to the Career Services and Interview Skills, Consultancy Skills, Business Modelling, an Introduction to NLP, Research Methods, Coaching and Mentoring and Resume Writing.
A post-script to this is my request to hear from any of you who work in HR or who have to deal with a lot of CVs/resumes. I am putting together the final parts of my half-day workshop on the subject for the Skills Weekend, and would like to be giving practical support, so I would like to ask a few pertinent questions of people who deal professionally or frequently with managers' resumes. Please email me if you have a little time. Thanks!
Changes to Part Three Exam
Starting with the December 2006 sitting the Part Three exam format be change. As there are no DL Intakes due to sit the exam in December, there will be plenty of time for familiarisation to the new format at scheduled exam preparation workshops. Some of you, though, may need to sit the exam in December and your Administrator should have contacted you by now to inform you of a special exam preparation workshop being organised.
Full details of the new structure can be found in the Part Three exam guide online, but the highlights are: a pre-seen single case study (as in Parts One and Two), a larger set of unseen questions on the day, some of which are compulsory, some of which you may choose between, subjects examined are Strategic Direction (50%), Strategic Financial Analysis (20%) and Business Transformation (30%). The exam will last three hours and have 15 minutes question reading time. You will be allowed to prepare and bring notes, but only one sheet of A4 (both sides). This sheet may be used as an appendix and if referred to in your answers may also count toward your marks (thus making the inclusion of financial calculations in your answers an easier process than now).
For those of you who are at the stage of Part Three where you are focused on the dissertation but have not yet had a proposal accepted and tutor assigned, there is another Clinic organised for October 26th. The Clinic is a chance to come and receive a boost, talk to a tutor and get on, or back on, track.
Some who is who stuff
Over the past few months, there have been some personnel changes in various areas of the College. Since you may meet (or have met) some of these people at workshops or online, I thought I'd end this month's newsletter with a few names. Marc Day has been appointed Director of Studies for the Executive Full-time MBA, taking over from Martin Burridge. Lynn Thurloway is now Subject Area Leader (SAL) for Dissertations, replacing Susan Rose, who is now SAL for Marketing. Liz Houldsworth is new SAL for Managing People and Performance, taking over from Lynn. Trevor Long has replaced Scott Lichtenstein as SAL for Foundations of Management and is also SAL for Dynamics of Management, an exciting and brand new module. Katja Krueckeberg has been appointed as Programme Leader for the Executive Evening MBA.
Finally, Paul Aitken and Wolfgang Amann are new SALs for Leadership & Change, and Reputation and Relationships respectively. For completeness, I should also mention that Jon Morton, Director of Corporate Programmes, is now also the College's Assistant Principal. Phew!
Looking forward to seeing all of you coming in for workshops next month, and to meeting the new Intake for the first time.