01 Jul 2009

Harvard Business School Offers Custom Program for Multicultural Executives

Professor David Thomas
Photo: Stuart Cahill

BOSTON — One of the additions to Harvard Business School's portfolio of custom Executive Education offerings is making news. An article in today's Boston Globe focuses on an intensive one-week program called Next Generation Executive (NGE), developed in coordination with The Partnership, Inc., a Boston-based firm focusing on the development of multicultural professionals of color. The program took place on the HBS campus last week.

Chaired by HBS Professor David A. Thomas, an expert in cultural diversity in organizations, NGE is designed for senior Asian, Black, Latino, and Native American executives who have at least 15 years of experience and hold a functional leadership role that positions them for promotion to a general management assignment within the next five years. Almost 30 executives from a wide range of companies, including National Grid, Sovereign Bank, and TJX, participated.

The curriculum, taught by HBS faculty members, featured case studies, along with several lectures, a simulation exercise, an executive panel, and instruction in the use of a self-assessment tool. Career coaches were also on hand to offer advice to each participant.

Among the week's many lessons, executives in the program learned about developing a broad corporate perspective, transforming an organization's culture, building levers for communication and influence, crafting a personal leadership style, and creating a lifelong network of mentors, coaches, and friends.

For the next six months, the participants-all ready, able, and eager to make it to the top rungs of Corporate America--will be involved in a series of activities offered by The Partnership under the direction of its president and CEO, Beverly Edgehill.

"Our involvement with Next Generation Executive enables Harvard Business School faculty members to provide the talented men and women in this innovative and important program with the further skills they need to make the most of their abilities, reach the C-suite , and succeed there."

About Harvard Business School

Founded in 1908 as part of Harvard University, Harvard Business School is located on a 40-acre campus in Boston. Its faculty of more than 250 offers full-time programs leading to the MBA and PhD degrees, as well as more than 175 Executive Education programs, and Harvard Business School Online, the School’s digital learning platform. For more than a century, faculty have drawn on their research, their experience in working with organizations worldwide, and their passion for teaching, to educate leaders who make a difference in the world. The School and its curriculum attract the boldest thinkers and the most collaborative learners who will go on to shape the practice of business and entrepreneurship around the globe.