Building Wharton’s Brand in India
- by Monica McGrath
Editor’s note: Wharton Executive Education is increasing its connections to alumni and to the international business community by traveling to key global cities. Below are highlights of recent visits to Mumbai and New Delhi, India, the first country outside the U.S. where Wharton launched an open-enrollment program.
The timing was ideal—coming on the two-year anniversary of Wharton’s first open-enrollment program launched outside the United States in India. To date, about 300 business leaders throughout India have participated in Wharton’s Accelerated Development Program (ADP).
It’s not surprising that India is a strategic destination for Wharton. As an emerging economy and a booming market for entrepreneurs, the country is experiencing significant growth. Acquisitions are common. Managers face the challenge of merging cultures while producing products very quickly, and many of them are assuming new roles with higher levels of responsibility. In India and in China, another growth area for Wharton programs, the economies are in high gear. Not surprisingly, their need for leadership and management development is much higher than in the West, where the pace of growth has slowed.
Wharton’s ADP in India has attracted a much more senior group than the School anticipated, and the evaluations have been stellar—among the highest in Executive Education’s overall portfolio. The exposure in India’s business press as well as the buzz from these executives in our program has been phenomenal, and Wharton is looking to replicate India’s success in other regions.
A major highlight of the trip was exploring how Wharton could link up with the top 10 industry associations and the top multinationals for partnerships or management and Executive Education programming.
Wharton Executive Education also attended a reception of the Wharton Club of Africa, where Wharton alums from Africa and India gathered to explore how investors and business leaders in India could connect and do business in Africa.
The opportunity for Wharton to use programs like the ADP and custom programs on the ground in India is enhancing the brand of the school, allowing us to showcase Wharton’s two most important differentiators:
• Our size. Wharton works with more than 10,000 business executives each year, giving faculty a strong handle on the challenges companies face around the world, both in the developing world and in mature markets.
• Our methodology. Faculty members take much more of a mixed-methodology approach that includes cases, action learning, global immersion trips and facilitated discussions. As a result, Wharton tends to be much more interactive and tailored to the needs of working business leaders, who can engage in real-world problems right now by leveraging Wharton’s social classroom experience.