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Work hard, play hard: Gamification

TV game shows love progress bars, don’t they? The contestants and audience hold their breath as blocks light up to create a path towards a prize, or a big thermometer-like thing rises until a desired goal is reached. We seem to be hard-wired to respond to these visualisations of progress, and get a sense of achievement and reward when the goal is reached.

Pick-and-mix business skills: Executive Education

We wrote recently about an accelerated 1-year MBA course that packs a full MBA into 11 months. That’s perfect if you move in circles where an MBA is indispensable for getting ahead. But if those three letters after your name are not that essential to you and you need specific business skills without having to enroll in a full postgraduate degree, you can pick and mix the skills you need by taking shorter business courses with a specific focus.

Life in the fast lane: the one-year MBA

If business can be defined as a language, your fluency in it defines your level in the global hierarchy of commercial activity. From hot dog stand to corporate boardroom there is a spectrum of fluency in business terms, concepts and ideas. At the top you find people who have mastered these to enable themselves to move in C-suite circles with confidence. Many of those who didn’t get there from the hot dog stand by sheer force of will and chutzpah will have got an MBA under their belt to help them progress their careers.

Vital functions: become an Excel Jedi

The macros function within Excel is such a powerful feature that only the initiated can handle it. You are ready to enter the realm of Excel macros when you are a confident and experienced use of Excel and comfortable creating formulas and manipulating spreadsheet data. A little experience in Visual Basic won’t go amiss, either. You will have mastered most of the functions that come as standard with Excel and be ready to create your own.

Lost in translation? International Management

Despite globalization, each country and region has its own business systems and culture. From one country to another there can be dramatic differences in how people view authority, how much personal responsibility they take for their companies’ fortunes, and how organisations are structured. Finance and accounting methods vary widely. HR practices are by no means homogeneous around the globe. So executives working in global business need to be made aware of these regional differences and develop the ability to function effectively within them and transition smoothly between them.

Making headway: Certificate in Project Management

Project Management is the art of keeping projects on track in the face of changing requirements, deadlines and budgets. It is an ‘art’ because it bears many similarities to conducting an orchestra: the brass section has to come in on cue and the strings have to play in time. Even the guy on triangle has to go ‘ding!’ at precisely the right moment to make the whole production work. A more realistic definition might be that Project Management is like conducting an orchestra on board a ship in rough seas.