The world is full of wonderful places to explore and learn. And South Africa is no exception.
During our Leadership in Sustainability MBA program, our MBA students traveled to the Stellenbosch Business School in South Africa. This trip was not only an opportunity to discover a new country, but also to learn valuable lessons about sustainable leadership.
In this blog, you will read about what our professors taught and what our MBA students shared with us and the home front.
A sustainable future for South Africa
Despite dismal economic figures and challenges such as power outages, corruption and protests, our students were pleasantly surprised by the many sustainable initiatives in the country. Among other things, they visited the Sustainability Institute, where they reviewed their perception of their role and impact as professionals.
Thanks to a lecture by Jako Volschenk on the green economy and a visit to the brand new BMRI of the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences at Stellenbosch University, our students learned more about South Africa's sustainability and innovation efforts.
Professor Zweli's lecture discussed the importance of values to ensure ethical decision-making:
There is a relationship between ethics, values, and leadership. It is not just the content of what one believes is right and wrong but how one makes moral or ethical judgments. Ethical dilemmas often involve a choice between two “rights” rather than choices between what is right or wrong. Recent research has explored the interdependencies between effective leadership and particular value systems.
Prof. Zweli Ndevu is een expert in publiek leiderschap, HRM met specialisatie in prestatiemanagement, ethiek, overheidsparticipatie en lokaal bestuur.
Leadership in a multicultural world
In addition to sustainability, leadership was a major theme during this study tour. Our students had the opportunity to listen to an inspiring lecture by Dr. Natasha Winkler-Titus on multiculturalism and leadership. Through this, they learned the importance of taking cultural differences into account and being inclusive in your leadership in an increasingly diverse world.
The importance of stories and the future of Africa
During their visit to Langa Township, our students heard stories from the community that helped them better understand the realities and challenges of life in South Africa. Future scenarios for Africa, presented by Njeri Mwagiru, gave them insight into the possible directions the continent could take.
An unforgettable experience
This study tour to South Africa was an unforgettable experience for our MBA students. They returned with new insights, ideas and inspiration to shape their own careers and communities. As Nelson Mandela once said, "It's not where you start, but how high you aim that determines your success." Our students are ready to aim high and make a positive impact on the world.
Tom Bramsen - Senior Accountant Manager
During and after the study tour, I also increasingly felt a sense of pride in the company I work for. For me it shows that a private company is able to strive for a positive impact on all stakeholders (and not only shareholders). It also demonstrates that it can achieve this and that it is willing to account transparently for its results to external supervisors. I think this is a great example that fits in with what was discussed during the lectures in South Africa. That there are wonderful, hopeful examples of sustainable business models in the private sector in which profits also benefit the collective.
Mitra Tebbe - Dermatologist
It is important that government and health care organizations continue to work
to improve access to health care in Cape Town's poor neighborhoods and address health risks and inequalities. As a dermatologist and chair of the sustainability working group at the Jeroen Bosch Hospital, I stay in touch with my colleagues in Cape Town to exchange views among themselves as doctors.
Has this blog inspired you to broaden your horizons and learn more about sustainability and leadership? Then consider joining our MBA program at Academica University of Applied Sciences. Together, we can work toward a more sustainable and just world for all.Go to the MBA-page