Shaping tomorrow. Starting today.

The future is yours. Now’s the time to pick up real-world business skills – from leading a team to striking a deal – and to explore how sustainability can supercharge your ideas.

You’ll learn from leading business experts and work with real start-up entrepreneurs. All in the heart of Oxford, one of the UK’s outstanding hubs of innovation and research, and all alongside an international group of students as interesting and driven as you.

And because this course is all about fresh approaches, you won’t be stuck behind a desk. Working visits, hackathons, role plays, masterclasses, personal coaching, cultural adventures and more. Two weeks of pure inspiration.

Who’s it for?

We’ve designed a FutureMBA course for two age groups: 16 to 17-year- olds and those aged 18 and above.

Perhaps you’re considering a career in consultancy, finance or NGO work. Perhaps you see yourself completing a full MBA one day. Perhaps you’re simply keen for new perspectives on (and exposure to) the future of business.

Or maybe it’s all three.

What you’ll learn

Our FutureMBA course is inspired by Giselle Weybrecht’s research in The Future MBA. As well as learning essential theory, from finance to strategy, you’ll explore how sustainability is shaping the future of business – and what that means for you.

Strategy and 21st century strategic goals: how to set, evaluate and achieve what you want

Strategy is at the core of any successful business; creating a plan for how to achieve important business objectives is the first task of any competent CEO. You’ll explore how to weigh a business’s strategic priorities and decide what to do (and what not to do) before examining tools for evaluating performance against strategy and how to make adjustments (which, as the experiences of our experts will demonstrate, will always be necessary). You’ll learn more about how strategies need to be refreshed and communicated persuasively to your wider team, alongside creating a culture that supports the delivery of your strategy.

Negotiation skills featuring alternative negotiations, consensus building, dispute resolution

Negotiation is everywhere in our daily interactions, and they can mean the difference between success and failure. You’ll learn how antagonistic negotiations rarely work in the long term, and how the ability to build consensus is a powerful tool in promoting shared interests and deepening relationships – with a business partner, local community or government. You’ll also get to test out and critique these skills in a role play negotiation game: will you strike a deal or be left empty handed at the negotiation table?

Sustainable leadership

The leaders of the future will not (all) be middle-aged men in suits; you’ll learn to challenge assumptions about what leadership means (not necessarily CEOs or large company bosses) and learn how leaders can be defined by their actions and values rather than their position – think Nobel Prize winners and Olympian athletes. You’ll have time to test and evaluate your own leadership style rather than merely copying the styles of others, so that you can be an authentic and successful future leader based on your values and what is important to you.

Managing and motivating young employees

Leadership is replacing management as the dominant methodology for driving elite performance in any team – business or otherwise. You’ll learn the key motivators for young employees (Generation Z and beyond) – such as progression rather than salary – and test your skills in case studies to design the best company to work for. You’ll work on your teamwork skills and understand turn taking (leading
and being led) to promote collaboration and getting the best out of the overall team, recognising and accommodating the strengths and weakness of your classmates.

Finance as a tool for growth and development

You’ll explore how finance can make things happen: enabling companies to research and develop new products, take on new contracts, hire new staff or build new premises. You’ll understand how finance can be deployed to solve problems and forms the basis of any investment – whether for future growth or international development. You’ll choose one of these topics to tackle as a case study. Will you be able to finance a deal that works for investors and the business? Can you find a sustainable financing model to promote literacy rates in the developing world?

Social and environmental impact and sustainability

Impact is now at the core of what motivates potential new staff and how customers make purchasing decisions. Why? Because (some) current business practices are simply not sustainable for the planet or for workers. Governments, employees and customers will demand a better record from business in developing sustainable approaches to industry and acceptable working conditions. You’ll learn how to measure social and environmental impact and gain an appreciation for the current policy environment and what changes are proposed: setting the “rules of the game” for future business to operate. You’ll learn about how businesses measure the “triple bottom line” that includes social and environmental impact and explore how businesses make trade-offs through case studies.

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Innovation and growth

Join us in Oxford’s creative hub to brainstorm ideas with tech and biotech start-ups. You’ll work alongside team members from local cutting-edge industries to think about their business problems and work collaboratively in an ideas generation process. You’ll also explore Peter Thiel’s revolutionary theory, Zero to One, learning the value of creating something completely new in an area where nothing currently exists, giving you the tools for how to create the next game-changing tech giant.

Entrepreneurship in the future

You’ll spend time questioning widely-held business assumptions to better understand where they come from, how to dismantle them and how being able to think different can be a powerful tool for innovation. You’ll explore how entrepreneurs bring together a range of resources to make things happen, and how collaboration and embedding learning from other organisations can boost performance. As an entrepreneur of the future you’ll work with your business mentor to set goals about what you’ll start (either in Oxford or back at home), making a plan for what resources you need, who will help and what you aim to achieve.

Analysis of Today

Over brunch you’ll read and analyse the English Sunday papers, guided by our experts. You’ll investigate potential business and NGO moves in reaction to the latest news in international relations and geopolitics, looking at opportunities and risks and how businesses shape – and are shaped by – events that make headlines.

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Strategy and 21st century strategic goals: how to set, evaluate and achieve what you want

Strategy is at the core of any successful business; creating a plan for how to achieve important business objectives is the first task of any competent CEO. You’ll explore how to weigh a business’s strategic priorities and decide what to do (and what not to do) before examining tools for evaluating performance against strategy and how to make adjustments (which, as the experiences of our experts will demonstrate, will always be necessary). You’ll learn more about how strategies need to be refreshed and communicated persuasively to your wider team, alongside creating a culture that supports the delivery of your strategy.

Negotiation skills featuring alternative negotiations, consensus building, dispute resolution

Negotiation is everywhere in our daily interactions, and they can mean the difference between success and failure. You’ll learn how antagonistic negotiations rarely work in the long term, and how the ability to build consensus is a powerful tool in promoting shared interests and deepening relationships – with a business partner, local community or government. You’ll also get to test out and critique these skills in a role play negotiation game: will you strike a deal or be left empty handed at the negotiation table?

Sustainable leadership

The leaders of the future will not (all) be middle-aged men in suits; you’ll learn to challenge assumptions about what leadership means (not necessarily CEOs or large company bosses) and learn how leaders can be defined by their actions and values rather than their position – think Nobel Prize winners and Olympian athletes. You’ll have time to test and evaluate your own leadership style rather than merely copying the styles of others, so that you can be an authentic and successful future leader based on your values and what is important to you.

Managing and motivating young employees

Leadership is replacing management as the dominant methodology for driving elite performance in any team – business or otherwise. You’ll learn the key motivators for young employees (Generation Z and beyond) – such as progression rather than salary – and test your skills in case studies to design the best company to work for. You’ll work on your teamwork skills and understand turn taking (leading and being led) to promote collaboration and getting the best out of the overall team, recognising and accommodating the strengths and weakness of your classmates.

Finance as a tool for growth and development

You’ll explore how finance can make things happen: enabling companies to research and develop new products, take on new contracts, hire new staff or build new premises. You’ll understand how finance can be deployed to solve problems and forms the basis of any investment – whether for future growth or international development. You’ll choose one of these topics to tackle as a case study. Will you be able to finance a deal that works for investors and the business? Can you find a sustainable financing model to promote literacy rates in the developing world?

Social and environmental impact and sustainability

Impact is now at the core of what motivates potential new staff and how customers make purchasing decisions. Why? Because (some) current business practices are simply not sustainable for the planet or for workers. Governments, employees and customers will demand a better record from business in developing sustainable approaches to industry and acceptable working conditions. You’ll learn how to measure social and environmental impact and gain an appreciation for the current policy environment and what changes are proposed: setting the “rules of the game” for future business to operate. You’ll learn about how businesses measure the “triple bottom line” that includes social and environmental impact and explore how businesses make trade-offs through case studies.

Innovation and growth

Join us in Cambridge’s creative hub to brainstorm ideas with tech and biotech start-ups. You’ll work alongside team members from local cutting-edge industries to think about their business problems and work collaboratively in an ideas generation process. You’ll also explore Peter Thiel’s revolutionary theory, Zero to One, learning the value of creating something completely new in an area where nothing currently exists, giving you the tools for how to create the next game-changing tech giant.

Entrepreneurship in the future

You’ll spend time questioning widely-held business assumptions to better understand where they come from, how to dismantle them and how being able to think different can be a powerful tool for innovation. You’ll explore how entrepreneurs bring together a range of resources to make things happen, and how collaboration and embedding learning from other organisations can boost performance. As an entrepreneur of the future you’ll work with your business mentor to set goals about what you’ll start (either in Cambridge or back at home), making a plan for what resources you need, who will help and what you aim to achieve.

Analysis of Today

Over brunch you’ll read and analyse the English Sunday papers, guided by our experts. You’ll investigate potential business and NGO moves in reaction to the latest news in international relations and geopolitics, looking at opportunities and risks and how businesses shape – and are shaped by – events that make headlines.

How you’ll learn

You’ll pick up core subject knowledge through interactive classes, and you’ll get to apply your knowledge to real businesses through case-study work.

We’ll spend time with real start-ups and introduce you to keynote speakers – CEOs at some of the UK’s fastest growing companies – giving you the chance to absorb their insights and advice.

Role plays will help you bring your learning to life, and thanks to an adrenaline-pumping hackathon you’ll get to develop your own business idea and pitch it to industry experts and investors.

There’s also time for guided personal reflection, encouraging you to understand your own strengths and limitations, as well as one-on-one coaching to help you work out what you want from your future (and how to get it).

Why Oxford?

Some of history’s finest minds have been inspired by Oxford. You’ll take classes at Somerville College and Saïd Business School, both world-renowned centres of excellence, with leading academics and experts. But that’s only half the story.

Oxford is also home to the UK’s most exciting innovation and entrepreneurship, with a powerful network of start-up labs, tech hubs and science parks. You’ll get to see where game-changing ideas happen and work with the people responsible for them.

And we’ll make sure you get plenty of time to explore Oxford’s culture and entertainment hotspots. (There’s quite a few of those, too.)

Where you’ll stay and who you’ll meet

Your secure, comfortable accommodation – private single rooms occupied by Oxford University students during term time – will be in Somerville College. It’s a remarkable place with lots of history.

You’ll have a dedicated pastoral team of current business students and top-tier alumni to make sure you’re safe, happy and thriving. They may even pitch in the occasional idea (or local recommendation) if you ask nicely

And, most importantly, you’ll be surrounded by a diverse group of fellow students from all around the world. It’s a precious opportunity to forge lasting connections with other bright sparks. Who knows? Some could end up being useful contacts. Others could be best friends.

What you’ll do (when you’re not learning)

As well as free time for exploring Oxford you’ll enjoy a programme of social events and excursions, to help you get the most from the course and make memories with your new friends.

OIn the evening we might take a break with mindfulness, get competitive with a sports tournament in the park, or embarrass ourselves on the dancefloor. There’s also the chance to sample the delights of Oxford from the water with a traditional boat tour, as well as a day trip to London to take in all the sights.

And at the end of the course we’ll lay on a college banquet, awards ceremony and farewell party.

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Prices and Dates

2 week courses: £3,125

  • 5th August to 18th August 2018 – Oxford (16-17 year olds)

Included in the price is:

  • All teaching, including coaching sessions
  • Accommodation, breakfast and evening meals every day
  • All activities and excursions

The price does not include flights/travel or medical insurance.