With this blog, I would like to share my experience after joining the Executive MBA class at Frankfurt School of Finance and Management in September 2022 and give some personal advice on how to best integrate the Executive MBA into your work-life balance.
As expected, one needs to dedicate enough time to EMBA studies and should not assume a few hours a week is enough. The programme at Frankfurt School is structured in a way that class meets roughly once a month for an entire weekend from Friday to Sunday late afternoon. In the remaining three weeks, before each upcoming onsite module, students work on individual as well as group assignments.
Preparation for each onsite weekend starts with some interesting readings that students are requested to complete in order to get the most out of each weekend.
During the onsite weekends, there is time for literally nothing than studies. Every weekend our agenda is fully packed with different interesting content so that one cannot handle any other plans during those weekends. However, the onsite part (at least in my personal perception) is the best part of the programme, as it offers a perfect opportunity to enjoy the content shared by the top-notch professors and meet great people from different backgrounds. In other words, despite the fact that our agenda is overloaded, it does not feel like work, and you can learn and enjoy the company of your fellow students.
After the onsite weekends, individual and group assignments start. While individual assignments focus more on academic education and on analysing current developments in different areas, group assignments are generally far more than just academic education. Group assignments generally require more time and commitment but also offer opportunities to work with intelligent brains, to challenge and teach each other. One of the main advantages of an Executive MBA programme at Frankfurt School is that you learn (at least) as much from your colleagues as from the professors.
This brings me to my recommendations to future EMBA students, and I will focus on three that, in my opinion, are the most important ones:
In addition, Frankfurt School often offers networking events and opportunities to meet with alumni, guest speakers and industry leaders. These events and opportunities are invaluable for expanding your network, gaining insights into various industries and staying informed about the latest industry trends and developments. This is one of the major focus areas that Frankfurt School pushes you to not only gain more academic knowledge but also grow your own professional network.
Finally, obviously one needs to invest time in Executive MBA education. The question is, how does one perceive the time invested in it? I personally, to a large extent, do not perceive the programme as work but rather a lifetime opportunity to stay up-to-date, meet intelligent and ambitious people, learn new things and keep my mind young. That said, I will conclude by quoting Tom Ford: “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at 20 or 80. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”