I’ve worked in the family company for the last 20 years. I graduated as a mechanical engineer and chose Wharton to build up my management skills as I prepare to be named CEO. My father is the founder and he will step down by the end of this year. My biggest challenge as a second-generation family business leader is how to continue my father’s legacy and, since Brazil is in a recession, ensure that our business is prepared for when the market picks up.
Wharton’s program was great and well worth the investment. For me, the biggest learning experience was the simulation, which focused on how to market a new medical injection device. We had to all take the time to listen and not talk over each other. Working as a group and bringing the best of each other’s backgrounds to the same point in the discussion was critical. Out of all the technical things we talked about, the biggest learning for me was how to you to create a high-performance team.
My family’s core business is the rental of tanks or containers for transport of dangerous goods or other chemicals or liquids. We have three companies — one in the chemical area, one serving offshore oil rigs and a third that rents modular disassembled canvass-covered warehouses. Since I oversee three managers for each of our companies, understanding how to bring out the best in a high-performance team was something I can use right away. I came to realize that if we don’t have the right person doing the job, the person with the most knowledge for that particular assignment, we are not going to get where we need to go. Focusing on high-performance teams will make a great difference.”
Director, Rentank, São Paulo, Brazil
The learning we experienced during the two intense weeks of EDP was immense. The program was well defined, covering all major facets of management in an industry context, and supported with case studies. One especially outstanding facet of the program was the opportunity to form a 'virtual company' and to play the role of an expert from a specific discipline, contributing the appropriate strategy to the company’s success. Thanks for the superb hospitality and for memories that I will cherish for years to come."
Managing Director, Teva API India, Ltd
The Executive Development Program (EDP) was the only program I looked at that addresses soft skills along with the hard ones, and it was the soft skills that I knew would help me perform better. To be a leader, you need to engage with employees, build a strong team, do cross-border business, report to a board, and communicate your vision and strategy to your team. You can read theories about how to do that in a book, but to really learn you need to practice. Wharton’s EDP is the only program that teaches you how, and then gives you the time and space to practice. It was by far the best executive education program I have done.”
Senior Vice President, ABN AMRO, The Netherlands
The program was a great experience! As a senior executive, I don’t usually get the time to reflect on my role or receive the kind of feedback that I got from my peers in this program. I greatly appreciated having real-world professors and speakers — people like us who are living in the business world, not just basing their insights on theoretical or book knowledge."
Hong (Margaret) Chen
Director, Asia, Telefonica
The Wharton EDP experience exceeded my expectations. The instructors, team simulation, programming, and facilities were all world-class and at the leading edge of business education. Importantly, the truly international and cross-industry make-up of the class enriched the diversity of thinking, requiring a global approach to problem solving. I was able to implement the new learning on day one when I returned to my job."
Matthew V. Petronio
EVP and Chief Operating Officer, Just Born, Inc., Bethlehem, PA – US