Virtual team building between different Masters programmes

Written on May 25, 2009 by uwe.spangler@ie.edu in General

Oswaldo Lorenzo, professor of Operations Management, uses an innovative pedagogical approach between Masters

The Master in Marketing Management and the Executive Master in Global Supply Chains joined together for a special project. While the Master in Marketing Management is a full-time programme with participants with an average age of 22 to 25, the Executive Master in Global Supply Chains is an online programme with face to face phases in Madrid and Shanghai, with an executive profile and an average age of between 28 to 40. Students from the executive programme have been participating as the
leaders of a virtual teams composed of 4 to 5 members of the junior programme. In total, 10 of these mixed virtual teams were set up. The teams worked together on improving the supply chain of the team leader´s.

The leaders had to define the goals and the deliverables. The duration of the project was 2 months, with the virtual teams presenting their results at the end.

A synchronized online seminar by Professor Mark Fritz on managing virtual teams gave the teams a theoretical background, which they could put into practice in their teams. The entire project was supported by the online learning environment of IE, via videoconferences and forums. The students were really satisfied with this
interdisciplinary way of working between different Master programmes.

For Oswaldo Lorenzo this ambitious project is really the key to forming future managers with expertise in the virtual work environment, which is seen as the future of most professions.

IE faces the challenge of distributing this new pedagogical approach over the whole range of Master programmes, with the hope of becoming a reference in the area of virtual leadership.

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