Transformative Management

Dealing with contemporary questions –  How to scale your business model beyond national borders? How to forge, leverage and operate in disruptive ecosystems? How to utilize alliances and partnerships to create and sustain a competitive advantage? How to enact a digital strategy? How to become a responsible leader? – demand a deep understanding of transformative management.

Traditional (linear) strategic thinking and execution is inadequate to operate successfully in today’s global competitive business environment. For companies to sustain their competitive edge in an increasingly uncertain and complex world, managers need to be able to swiftly develop creative strategies and transform their organizational practices to effectively deal with emerging tensions.

The program ‘Transformative Management’ enables (future) strategists to effectively diagnose and solve complex problems using a mix of both classical and cutting-edge managerial frameworks. In this multidisciplinary management program, participants are challenged to develop both state-of-the-art and practical solutions to today’s and tomorrow’s business challenges. 

Learning Objectives
The programme Transformative Management  will enable:

  • Participants to obtain a theoretical understanding of how to leverage globalization, disruption, collaboration, and responsible management for improved business performance.
  • Participants to apply theories to their own business problems to identify their challenges and design solutions.
  • Participants to improve critical, creative, and independent thinking and continuously engage in a reflective process of learning and unlearning.

Program Benefits

  • You gain the necessary skills to design and build winning action plans that align with your company’s ambitions and sustain competitive advantage in an increasingly disruptive and competitive world.
  • You learn to question and reconsider your view on strategic management and enhance your skill-set with creative and independent thinking.
  • You explore how your organization’s shortcomings and competencies translate into strategic challenges and opportunities.
  • You acquaint yourself and use contemporary analytical framework and tools to identify and evaluate business’s strategy efficacy and execute change-management initiatives.
  • You become part of a community of peers.

Participants receive:

  • Module completion certificate, after completion of each module
  • Program Certificate “Transformative Management”, after the completion of at least six modules 

Through pioneering multidisciplinary research, you are challenged to develop an understanding of how to leverage current developments in the business environment. program provides an evenhanded appreciation for state-of-the-art knowledge and effective implementation, attained through a mixture of lectures, case study analysis, and discussion groups. 

The total program comprises 8 modules of two days each. Each module has a similar set-up:

  • Before the module starts, each participant is required to conduct a preparatory assignment introducing students to the topic, as well as providing them with an opportunity to bring their own business challenges to class. 
  • At the start of each module a contemporary case is introduced, articulating the tension guiding the module. Key challenges will be identified, as well as solutions to deal with the problem.
  • State-of-the-art academic insights will be introduced with a focus on resolving the tension using different perspectives.
  • Initial solutions are re-assessed through discussion, in-class assignments, case analysis, and presentations.
  • Participants have an opportunity to present their own case (description, challenges, questions) and through dialogue and discussion insights are made applicable to participants’ contexts.
  • If applicable guest speakers (academic and/or practice) are introduced to provide a deeper insight in the module’s content.

Each module is supported with on-line materials, including readings, examples, and videos.

Overview Program

Name   Content   Tension   Themes
October*Module 1Competing GloballyGlobal and local competition, internationalization
responsiveness -
Globalization, disruption
NovemberModule 2Corporate EntrepreneurshipStrategic flexibility, agility, resilience, organizational change & learningchange -
Disruption, globalization
DecemberModule 3Leading Digital StrategyStrategy-development, strategy context, digital ecosystemsleading -
Disruption, collaboration
JanuaryModule 4Business Model TransformationBusiness model innovation, adaptationcreation -
Collaboration, disruption
FebruaryModule 5Collaborative  TransformationAlliances, business  ecosystems, open innovationcooperation -
Collaboration, responsibility
MarchModule 6Responsible Strategic LeadershipCorporate Social Responsibility, ethics, biasescreativity -
Responsibility, Leadership
AprilModule 7Building International CareersExpats, cultural competences, rewards, learning, values and normsrelativism -
Responsibility, globalization
JuneModule 8Leading Global TeamsHigh-performance teams, project / virtual / global, multi-team systemsuniformity -
Globalization, Responsibility
* Modules are offered on Thursday/Friday, first week of the Month 

** Complete at least six modules to obtain a Professional Programme Certificate

The modular program helps you discover new ways to tackle the strategic challenges and opportunities you face with regard to globalization, disruption, collaboration, and responsibly management. Rather than getting a checklist of best practices, you will develop the insights and skills that empower you to create winning action plans that will be neatly tailored to your own situation. It’s an opportunity to immerse yourself with fellow executives in a learning environment that cultivates an innovative mindset to bring back to your organization.

Transformative Management

Module 1: 4 and 5 October 2018 (Week 40)
Module 2: 1 and 2 November 2018 (Week 44)
Module 3: 6 and 7 December 2018 (Week 49)
Module 4: 10 and 11 January 2019 (Week 2)
Module 5: 7 and 8 February 2019 (Week 6)
Module 6: 7 and 8 March 2019 (Week 10)
Module 7: 4 and 5 April 2019 (Week 14)
Module 8: 6 and 7 June 2019 (Week  23)

All modules will be organized at the VU-Campus


Module 1: Competing Globally
In a response to a more dynamic and complex business world, companies are required to accelerate strategy formulation and implementation. Moreover, competition has moved from the domestic to the world stage. The module focuses on how companies may enact growth (whether a MNE, SME, or start-up), promote entrepreneurship, secure funding, and operate across organizational boundaries.

Module 2: Corporate Entrepreneurship
To sustain a competitive edge companies are required to innovate and adapt to changing circumstances.  The module focuses on the key question how to grow your company into a World-class innovator? What can you learn from leading innovators in the world such as Amazon, Tesla, Booking or (digital) start-ups? But also from companies with a successful legacy business like Royal DSM, BMW or ING for example, which are also very innovative at the same time?

Module 3: Leading digital strategy
To remain competitive companies increasingly rely on new technologies and accordingly have to adopt their strategies. This module focuses on how companies may enact digital-based strategies, use technologies to their advantage, and make their organizations resilient. Module features include, digital strategies, big data,  block-chain, digitial platforms,  etc.

Module 4: Business model transformation
To remain competitive companies increasingly rely on new business models and accordingly have to adopt their business practices. This module focuses on how companies may enact business model (change) strategies to their advantage and make their organizations resilient.

Module 5: Collaborative transformation
To remain competitive companies increasingly rely on forging, managing, and dissolving external relationships. This module focuses on how companies may use partnership strategies to their advantage and use external relations to enhance their organizations’ responsiveness. Whereas the module details on traditional partnership approaches, ample time is devoted to new emerging forms of collaboration, including business ecosystems and co-opetition. 

Module 6: Responsible strategic leadership
Companies are increasingly confronted with a responsibility to respond to societal challenges and ethical issues, including climate change, alternative energy sources, and sourcing labor. The module focuses on how companies may engage in CRS and resolve ethical dilemmas.

Module 7: Building international careers
The growth of international business brings about new career paths as organizations increasingly grow their personnel by rotating employees between foreign countries. This module develops an understanding of how companies can benefit from people with work experience in multiple countries and how individuals leverage international assignments to grow their careers.

Module 8: Leading global teams
With the falling of trade barriers and advances of communication technologies, companies increasingly built teams with members from different geographic locations to take advantage of country specific advantages. The module explores issues around what makes global teams effective by considering how to improve individual performance and how to manage global teams.

The program has multiple unique features.

  • The program departs from real-life complex problems, and as such offers participants to engage in creative, counter-intuitive and independent thinking while familiarizing themselves with state-of-the art academic knowledge and cross-sector business practices.
  • To enhance the program’s relevance to participants, academic knowledge is translated into practical frameworks and tools which enables participants to apply learning within their own organizations.
  • The program promotes co-creation and knowledge sharing between participants.
  • The program offers a flexible (modular set-up) and expedient (monthly sessions) way to augment the participants knowledge and skills.
  • The program adheres to the VU Amsterdam values and promotes global citizenship
  • The program is run by high-quality executive teaching staff with strong academic and managerial backgrounds. In addition, the strength of staff members originates in their diversity, critical to identify and resolve messy problems.

Who  Should Attend

  • Professionals with an ambition to advance their understanding of strategizing in today’s world. Participants generally have a background (but not necessarily) in management, and are between 25-40 years. This may include for example:
  • Professionals with a functional background, such as engineering, accounting, finance, human resource management, transitioning into general and strategic management positions
  • Managers from larger (global) organizations, from any industry and any country
  • Founders and owners of SMEs who are experiencing (exponential) growth
  • Middle-level managers who will soon assume top-management positions
  • Professionals working in public organizations, who seek an understanding about business practices. 

For application information contact:
-    dr. Brian Tjemkes: / 020-5986151, or

One could actually register by filling in this form.

8 modules with open enrollment for each module
Fee:One module is €2250,-- (excl. VAT); six modules or more 10% discount. The module price includes food/beverage; excludes hotel
Admission requirements and application
Starting date:
October (week 40)
Each module is comprised of two days (Thursday / Friday)
Subject:Organization, Strategy
Location:VU Campus

For more information contact:
-    dr. Brian Tjemkes: / 020-5986151, or

Traditional management approaches have become obsolete in today’s dynamic and complex world. To remain competitive, businesses and organizations have to creatively reinvent their strategies, structures, and practices. They have to come up with answers to unknown questions. The SBE Management Division proudly offers four new Executive Programs, each program preparing participants to be ready for the future. 

On Wednesday June 27th, the SBE Management Division organizes an information session to introduce these programs. The first program ‘Digital Innovation and Transformation’ offers a one year trajectory  (Dutch) during which participants are familiarized with formulating and executing digital strategies. The second program called ‘Board Dynamics’ provides answers to questions such as how to create a high-performing board and how to deal with the ‘unsaid’ during board meetings. The third and fourth program focus on strategic and organizational transformation. Transformative management comprises eight (optional) modules which acquaint participants with viable strategies within the context of globalization, digitalization, collaboration, and responsible leadership. The program Leading Corporate Transformation offers a high-density program of four days during which participants will be familiarized with drivers of corporate transformation. 

The session will be guided by professor Hans Berends, Brian Tjemkes, Svetlana Khapova, and Marilieke Engbers.

Time: 18:00 till 20:30.
Location: VU Amsterdam

The preliminary program is as follows:

17:00-18:00 – Walk-in & coffee
18:00-18:15 – Introduction
18:15-18:35 – Digital Innovation & Transformation
18:35-18:55 – Het ongezegde in de Boardroom
18:55-19:15 – Transformative Management & Leading Corporate Transformation
19:15-19:30 – Q&A
19:30-20:30 – Closing and networking drinks

For more information, please contact

Or register on-line.