Senior Management Development Programme (University of Stellenbosch Business School)


The Senior Management Development Programme (SMDP) of USB Executive Development Ltd (USB-ED) is aimed specifically at equipping senior managers with the necessary knowledge as well as leadership and change management skills to function effectively within a corporate environment. This comprehensive programme focuses on translating learning into improvement in the workplace for both the individual and the organisation.


What sets this intervention apart
This programme is designed to raise self-awareness as a core competency of a 21st century leader. This, together with a sound base in relevant theory and practical application, forms a meta-frame that covers all the critical senior management functions. Finally, participants have the opportunity to synthesise their acquired knowledge and skills in the different areas and apply their personal learning in an integrated group project aimed at adding value in a business situation.


Who should attend
This programme is aimed at senior managers from all industries who are responsible for managing managers and who are eager to benchmark and further their potential.


Admission requirements
No formal tertiary qualifications are required. Participants should have experience and a basic knowledge of the programme topics and understanding of the subject matter presented in USB-ED's Management Development Programme (MDP) or an equivalent. Participants who do not have a basic knowledge of finance should attend USB-ED's Programme in Financial Management for Non-financial Managers prior to attending the SMDP. Five years in middle to senior management is recommended.


How you will benefit :

After successful completion of the SMDP, participants will be able to:

  • understand and apply entrepreneurial principles in a business context
  • analyse the financial health of an organisation and recommend ways of improving its financial viability
  • analyse and interpret the effect of economic drivers on industries and companies  use the techniques provided by operations and project management to plan and execute projects and processes in their own organisations effectively and efficiently
  • draw up an advanced marketing plan incorporating all the facets of a sound and comprehensive marketing approach• manage, organise, motivate and build people into a great team through considering their personal management and leadership styles
  • draw up a comprehensive business plan integrating all the disciplines of the programme to demonstrate an understanding of their interrelationship
  • build an invaluable network of managers who face the same challenges in the work environment
  • have a greater awareness of own abilities to think and act strategically, and to translate strategies into actions.



This phase starts as soon as participants have paid the full programme fee and receive their study material. It is assumed that participants will have read the prescribed material and they will be required to complete an assignment in some of the modules prior to the first study school.



Having absorbed the study material, participants will be ready for the conceptual phase of the programme, which entails debating the realities of business in the South African and global context. This phase is made up of three compulsory study schools, each lasting one week.



 In the break between the study schools, participants are required to complete practical assignments applicable to their own work environment.



During the course of the programme the various fields of study are integrated. A group project is completed and presented to a panel of academics and business people.


The following content will be covered:

  • INTRODUCTION TO STRATEGIC THINKING: Intrapreneurial principles; management of the future; management of growth and creativity; corporate entrepreneurship; innovation and creativity
  • LEADERSHIP AND CHANGE MANAGEMENT: The role of leadership and team-building; mobilising employees and gaining commitment to the vision; conflict management; diversity management; coaching and building resilience
  • FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT:Liquidity and turnover ratios; leverage and profit ability ratios; drafting of budgets; working capital management; management of cash flow
    INTEGRATING ECONOMICS: The meaning and operation of the economy and economic systems; behaviour and interaction of participants in economic activities; the significance of money and monetary policy in the economy; macroeconomic objectives and analysis; evaluation of the impact of economic changes on a company; economic policy decisions
  • MANAGING PROJECTS FOR STRATEGIC ADVANTAGE: Organising for project management; strategic viability of projects; formulation of project scope and planning; allocation and balance of monetary resources
  • MARKETING FOR EXCELLENCE: The role of marketing in the management process; the changing and uncertain marketing environment; marketing information; the value proposition; building brand equity; marketing metrics and ROI; expanding customer value
  • BUILDING HUMAN CAPITAL: The changing world of work; the impact of organisational culture; learning organisations; contemporary challenges to employee well-being; career development
  • INFORMATION SYSTEMS MANAGEMENT (ISM): Thinking ISM; process; business value of ISM; investment decisions around ISM; knowledge management
  • INCREASING EXCELLENCE IN OPERATIONS AND SUPPLY CHAIN: Managing operations; creating a lean culture; principles of Six Sigma; continuous improvement ; the total supply chain process; leading edge manufacturing and operations concepts; integration and strategic sourcing; managing capacity
  • BUSINESS-DRIVEN ACTION LEARNING ASSIGNMENT: As part of the SMDP, participants complete a Business-Driven Action Learning assignment. During this group assignment, participants design a turnaround strategy for an NGO or small business that is in need of improving its performance, as well as an implementation/roll-out plan for implementing their recommendations effectively.

NQF complexity level

This programme is presented on the complexity level of NQF 7.


Date and Venues


SB 1: 11 - 15 March 2019
SB 2: 6 - 10 May 2019
SB 3: 24 - 28 June 2019
Final Presentation: August 2019

SB 1: 13 - 17 May 2019
SB 2: 8 - 12 July 2019
SB 3: 19 - 23 August 2019
Final Presentation: October 2019

SB 1: 1 - 5 July 2019
SB 2: 26 - 30 August 2019
SB 3: 14 - 18 October 2019
Final Presentation: November 2019


SB 1: 8 - 12 April 2019

SB 2: 27 - 31 May 2019

SB 3: 15 - 19 July 2019

Final Presentation: September 2019



SB 1: 1 - 5 July 2019

SB 2: 19 - 23 August 2019

SB 3: 7 - 11 October 2019

Final Presentation:  November 2019



SB 1: 10 - 14 June 2019

SB 2: 29 July - 2 August 2019

SB 3: 16 - 20 September 2019

Final Presentation: November 2019


Fees: R79 670.00 (inclusive of VAT)


Duration: 15 days (over thre block weeks)



With the modular option, the programme will be presented over three five-day study schools on the dates, at venues in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban. 

Before and between study schools, participants are required to do pre-reading and preparation for each module. Participants will be expected to complete individual assignments for each programme module. Participants will also complete a group assignment which will be presented during the final assessments to a panel from USB-ED.

PDF icon SMDP-2018.pdf3.8 MB