MBA Learning Outcomes

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Business Ethics and Corporate Governance

Course overview

Business is often regarded as a series of activities conducted for the singular pursuit of profit. As long as organisations operate within the confines of the law and make sustainable returns, they are seen as fulfilling their purpose.

However, organisations also need to maintain ethical standards. Corporate governance is broadly defined as the regulations and controls that determine how a company is run. In this module you will study what these regulations and controls are and how they relate to business ethics. This course also covers risk management.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Explain the concept of corporate governance as well as roles and responsibilities around corporate governance;
  • Understand the concept of values (our own and others’), and recognise the impact thereof upon our business ethics;
  • Clarify the need for creating a common set of values within an organisational business ethics framework;
  • Critically examine how ethics affect business and profitability;
  • Understand your business in relation to the community’s ethical framework, including concepts of transparency, social responsibility, equity etc;
  • Have developed a critical understanding of the legal nature of a company by critically analysing the separate legal personality and its application to corporate governance;
  • Critically examine terminology to understand how governance and control measures are applied in the business environment;
  • Critically analyse accountability in terms of alignment with legislation, regulations and the codes relating to corporate governance and ethics by focusing on the roles and responsibilities of the directors, board committees, auditor and company secretary;
  • Demonstrate understanding of the legal duties of the directors by understanding and analysing their fiduciary duties and their duties of care and skill;
  • Demonstrate a critical understanding of the importance of risk management as a key role of the board of directors to develop and manage risk in the business environment;
  • Critically analyse the importance of risk management by studying case studies of poor corporate governance that has resulted in corporate collapse;
  • Apply the King III Code of Governance to a business environment in accordance with the King III Report recommendations;
  • Critically analyse principles of ethics and ethical leadership by demonstrating a critical understanding of the importance of business ethics in a business environment; and
  • Apply case studies to demonstrate the value and importance of corporate governance to understand the importance and value of corporate governance in developing good corporate citizens in the economy.

Competitive Strategy

Course overview

An organisation’s results are, in part, the consequence of the decisions made by its leaders. The purpose of competitive strategy is to build a distinctive and sustainable competitive advantage over the organisation’s rivals.

Many strategies are implicit in that they evolve over time, rather than as a result of a process of explicit thought and planning. This course will walk you through developing competitive strategy through understanding your environment, your capabilities, envisioning your future organisation, plotting your path to it, and managing the changes needed to get you there.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Understand and interrogate the context of competition, corporate strategy and relevant theories;
  • Analyse, formulate and implement strategy in different business environments for achieving competitive advantage;
  • Apply and review investigative skills in understanding industry strategies;
  • Select and apply different strategic analytical tools and techniques for leveraging organisational strategy;
  • Formulate and explain strategies for managing competitive and co-operative dynamics;
  • Develop business plans and devise systems aimed at efficient management within global markets;
  • Distinguish between corporate and business strategy; and
  • Understand corporate governance and the roles and obligations of the boards of directors.

Economics

Course overview

Economics is a core component of the MBA programme. The broad purpose of this course, which covers macroeconomics, microeconomics, international trade, monetary economics, economic policy analysis and econometrics, is to facilitate your understanding of the fundamental principles, concepts and processes of economics, and the relationships between the many parts of the economy.

This module will familiarise you with demand and supply, elasticity, total income, the South African labour market, the monetary and foreign sectors, inflation, capital budgeting and the impact of globalisation.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Evaluate the different types of economic systems, the ideologies on which they are based, and their application to an organisation;
  • Explain and evaluate the impact of macroeconomic and microeconomic policies on a country;
  • Understand and analyse the effects of inflation on capital budgeting decisions and the cost of debt;
  • Explain how prices are established in the market as well as the restrictions on the market mechanism;
  • Explore the relationship between elasticity and total income;
  • Discuss and critique the various financial institutions, their functions and the nature of their business;
  • Describe and evaluate the benefits of international portfolio diversification;
  • Explore critically a country’s labour market and its key development challenges;
  • Understand and critically examine the impact of globalisation;
  • Identify and evaluate reasons why international trade takes place and the advantages of international trade; and
  • Understand the application of econometrics to economic phenomenon.

Entrepreneurship

Course overview

Entrepreneurship is the practice of starting new business ventures or internally revitalising mature companies through intrapreneurship. It is an essential feature of thriving economies. Mastering its processes ensures an understanding of how businesses can be launched or reinvigorated.

This course will introduce you to the theory of entrepreneurship, the mindset of the entrepreneur, feasibility analysis, funding, relevant legislation and ethics.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Evaluate the personal characteristics and skills required of an entrepreneur to facilitate the successful start-up and operation of a new venture;
  • Examine the advantages and disadvantages of entrepreneurship;
  • Interrogate the principles of an intrapreneur;
  • Evaluate an entrepreneurial process;
  • Critically evaluate opportunities
  • Critically evaluate entrepreneurial employment opportunities;
  • Critically assess the viability of a new venture;
  • Evaluate business failure;
  • Critically review ethics in business;
  • Evaluate the capital requirements, assets, revenue and costs of a new venture;
  • Identify and compare all short-term and long-term funding options offered by the finance industry for new ventures;
  • Interpret income statements and balance sheets;
  • Examine current legal and human resource legislation;
  • Evaluate business risks;
  • Identify, gather and analyse the relevant information needed to compile a business plan;
  • Establish and prioritise business, financial and operational goals and objectives for a new venture;
  • Design and present business, financial and marketing plans for a new venture; and
  • Identify information resources of available businesses and new markets accessed through the tendering process.

Strategic Financial Management

Course overview

Financial management is central to the processes of resource transformation and the creation of shareholder value. This course will prepare you to steer your organisation through the uncertainties of the economy, which is constantly in flux as legislation changes, exchange rates fluctuate and myriad other external events affect the broader environment.

This course will familiarise you with risk and return concepts and principles, evaluation techniques, how to deal with long- and short-term investment decisions, and provide an overview of mergers and international managerial finance requirements.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Explain the principles of strategic financial management, control management and operational control frameworks;
  • Describe and critically examine the fundamental roles and responsibilities of the financial manager of a listed company;
  • Differentiate between business risk, financial risk and investment risk and apply tools to manage risk appropriately;
  • Understand and critically examine the importance of the cost of capital in business decision making and outline the various methods of financing of capital and their respective impact on risk and return;
  • Evaluate the impact of diversification on the expected return and risk of a portfolio of shares;
  • Apply and critically examine valuation techniques used in calculating value;
  • Synthesise concepts around international finance and its impact on business enterprises;
  • Examine the context of credit policy, credit worthiness, debt collection and cash discount policy;
  • Analyse the investment strategies followed by different companies;
  • Critically analyse financial statements;
  • Examine different types of mergers and debate the pros and cons of each;
  • Demonstrate an analytical understanding of financial structuring; and
  • Apply principles of sound financial management and corporate governance.

Strategic Human Resource Management

Course overview

"At the end of the day you bet on people, not strategies." (Larry Bossidy)
Strategic human resource management uses people most wisely with respect to the strategic needs of the organisation.

The aim of this module is to focus your attention on strategic human asset management, a "distinctive approach to employment management which seeks to achieve competitive advantage through the strategic deployment of a highly committed and capable workforce using an array of cultural, structural and personal techniques," (Storey in Salaman, Storey and Billsberry, 2005).

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Interrogate key human resource management models;
  • Diagnose behavioural problems across the organisation for the purpose of informing organisational strategy;
  • Evaluate the impact of different leadership theories, models, styles and roles on human resource management practices;
  • Review human resource systems and management trends that best inform successful business practices;
  • Integrate labour relations strategy within a strategic human resource management environment;
  • Incorporate all relevant legislation within current human resource management paradigms;
  • Formulate a strategic human resource planning process and align it with business strategy and business plans;
  • Explain and review the role of organisational culture and reward systems;
  • Analyse the integration of organisational processes, systems, structure and culture for use in strategic decision-making pertaining to human resource management;
  • Analyse how teams are managed in the implementation and monitoring of business strategy implementation; and
  • Explain how you could use emotional and spiritual intelligence to manage the performance of a team.

Information and Communications Technology

Course overview

This module focuses on the essential concepts of information and communication technology and management information systems management best practices.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Develop an advanced understanding of the role and importance of information and communication technology in management;
  • Evaluate international trends in using ICT to improve business performance and the quality of service;
  • Interrogate key challenges of integrating ICT with business processes and management systems;
  • Conceptualise, develop and implement a technology-driven customer relations strategy;
  • Justify the potential use and application of databases, call centres and web-based technologies in improving customer relations management (CRM); and
  • Evaluate the utilisation of ICT in improving business effectiveness and efficiency.

Leadership, Emotional Intelligence and Spiritual Intelligence

Course overview

This course will challenge your beliefs and your understanding of leadership. While you will look at leadership theories, you will also have to apply your theoretical knowledge to your workplace to see what methods are most effective for you and your environment.

You will examine your current understanding of leadership, how you came to this, how you might change your approach to leadership, and how these changes can influence an organisation. You will look at emotional and spiritual intelligence, and should emerge from this part of the course with a comprehensive understanding of the individual (whether it is someone working with you or yourself). The latest leadership trends will also be discussed.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Examine and understand perceived and tested relationships between leadership and behavioural constructs and concepts at individual, group and organisational level;
  • Explain the distinction between leadership and management;
  • Have critical insight into one’s own leadership style using available leadership theories;
  • Formulate and apply different types of influence tactics in different leadership situations;
  • Propose effective and efficient leadership models designed for managing change and transformation;
  • Identify, develop and evaluate leadership skills;
  • Understand, examine and apply analytic tools pertaining to organisational culture and to provide clear explanations of how leadership influences organisational culture;
  • Examine the complexities of multicultural organisations and the management of diversity in such contexts;
  • Evaluate the fusion of team-based and individual learning; and
  • Analyse organisational problems and issues from an EQ and SQ framework.

Strategic Marketing Management

Course overview

Strategic marketing requires the ability "to innovate, discover and break rules to create sustainable value for customers" (Jooste, Strydom, Berndt and du Plessis, 2012).

In this course you will examine how to formulate and co-ordinate the implementation of an integrated, market-driven strategy that considers corporate strategy and long-term implications in constantly changing and highly competitive environments. You should emerge from this module with an understanding the corporate mission and its strategic objectives, equipped to analyse markets and customer segments, ready to devise a customer-driven marketing strategy that positions products (goods and services) to meet needs better than your competitors.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Conceptualise and review the strategic management process within a marketing context;
  • Conceptualise and formulate a marketing plan and competitive marketing strategy in local and international markets;
  • Explain and review the complexities in the implementation of marketing strategies;
  • Select and evaluate decision-making tools and information to recommend appropriate interventions;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of relationship marketing as a critical aspect of strategic marketing management;
  • Integrate business ethics with marketing strategy;
  • Evaluate strategic positioning in consumer and industrial markets; and
  • Critique the application of marketing strategies in transforming businesses.

Organisational Behaviour and Development

Course overview

Organisational development values collaborative and participative processes to achieve improved and sustainable performance. It is based on respect for people as responsible, conscientious and caring, and to be treated with dignity and respect.

This course will help you develop your understanding and use of the concepts of organisational development and the discipline’s models and processes. It will walk you through what is required to build an open and supportive organisational climate in which problems are confronted in a healthy way, and in which growth is nurtured.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Select and apply appropriate knowledge and skills in evaluating organisational development models and processes;
  • Design and propose organisational development and change management tools and processes across different business sectors;
  • Evaluate the role organisational culture plays in organisational development;
  • Understand and review critical success factors of organisational development;
  • Critique current and preferred organisational development interventions;
  • Understand and evaluate the intricate interface between organisational development strategies and business strategy; and
  • Examine ethical issues in the identification, formulation and implementation of organisational development interventions.

Project Management

Course overview

This course analyses and evaluates the processes and techniques required to select and manage projects to meet the strategic objectives of an organisation. It will heighten your awareness for the need for control and flexibility, and the inherent leadership challenges associated with both. Project managers must be adept at delegating responsibility, reprogramming schedules for the least incremental cost, and must use creative and innovative ways to meet seemingly impossible demands.

In short, project managers must be able to solve both technical (controlled) and adaptive (uncontrolled) problems. This module not only focuses on the current body of technical project management knowledge but also places a strong emphasis on leadership, team dynamics and stakeholder management.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Review current project management research and identify current issues and trends;
  • Interrogate the link between strategic, programme and project management;
  • Examine the skills and processes necessary to manage group dynamics and lead project teams effectively;
  • Critically evaluate project management definitions, theories, models and principles;
  • Select and apply relevant strategies and tools used in the project management life cycle:
    • Initiate
    • Plan
    • Execute
    • Monitor and control
    • Close a project
  • Identify, understand and involve stakeholders appropriately in the project management life cycle;
  • Manage time, costs and quality effectively and efficiently in complex and dynamic environments;
  • Critically analyse the impact that human resources have on projects;
  • Evaluate project risks and develop a proactive risk management plan;
  • Review project management software as a project management tool;
  • Make autonomous ethical decisions and contribute to the development of ethical project management standards;
  • Compile professional project documents and reports;
  • Critically review key issues relating to outsourcing, contract and tender management;
  • Evaluate key project success and failure factors; and
  • Critically evaluate current project management policies and procedures.

Research Methodology

Course overview

This module provides a sound basis for research in both your personal and work life.

It will help you navigate through research philosophies, methodology, design, and conducting and analysing data to produce meaningful information. It provides an essential foundation for the production of your dissertation.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Critically explain research terminology, concepts and principles;
  • Evaluate and compare the various types of research philosophies;
  • Apply and critique various research methods;
  • Comply with ethical issues in business research;
  • Understand the relationship between information resources and the knowledge management process of a specific organisation;
  • Collect and analyse research data and demonstrate its value in business decision-making;
  • Apply the research process in resolving a business problem;
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply advanced statistical and other scientific data analysis techniques;
  • Collect data by using the appropriate research methods;
  • Collate and analyse data by performing the relevant descriptive and inferential statistical analysis using appropriate tools and techniques; and
  • Develop and present a professional research proposal.

International Management

Course overview

Many organisations operate internationally; executives find themselves managing resources in increasingly complex and dynamic environments. Political and economic risk, cultural and sociological influences, regulatory issues, continuous technological change and human resource challenges affect every facet of international management decision-making.

A thorough understanding of strategic and cross-cultural management is essential for anyone managing transborder operations. This module is aimed not only at developing your knowledge of globalisation and the complex and dynamic environments it has produced, but also at equipping you with analytical tools, enabling you to develop strategies to resource and work with people around the world to ensure sustained competitive advantage and the maximisation of shareholder wealth.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Understand the globalised economy as it reflects decisions of nations, corporate and business entities;
  • Reflect critically on international and national financial flows, how they shape economies, and specifically the capacity of countries to develop their economies in the pursuit of investment and international trade;
  • Debate the influence and role of trading blocs in pursuit of economic growth;
  • Understand the cultural context of global management;
  • Formulate entry strategies, including appropriate organisational structures and control systems, for global operations; and
  • Understand the complexities of human resource management in the context of international management.

Innovation Management

Course overview

Innovation is essential for the success of a business, the economy and for future generations.

This course considers the typologies of innovation, including new forms such as frugal innovation. It explores innovation frameworks, how to deal with challenges and risk through strategy, structure, culture, and systems; knowledge management; and approaches to product innovation.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Reflect critically on the meaning and importance of innovation for the future sustainability of organisations, industry sectors, and economies;
  • Explain the critical factors for innovation success and how to diagnose these in an organisation;
  • Understand and use innovation management terminology, theories, and models;
  • Identify and critically evaluate leading approaches to innovation, including frameworks and processes;
  • Argue the imperative to treat innovation as a management process in an organisation;
  • Manage uncertainty in the innovation process;
  • Critically evaluate different methods for generating ideas;
  • Identify the decisions and challenges associated with the conceptualisation of ideas, product development, and taking products to market;
  • Critically evaluate core competencies and knowledge-based characteristics required to support innovation;
  • Understand the main types of intellectual property;
  • Exploit strategic alliances and networks to create innovative ways of doing business;
  • Discuss the role of innovation in relation to research and development; and
  • Critically evaluate innovative approaches used in product and service development.

Knowledge Management

Course overview

Knowledge is power! All organisations have knowledge assets … experiences, skills, expertise and opinions of employees, and the lessons learnt, best practices, patents, policies, standards, procedures and guidelines of the organisation. Knowledge management ensures that your knowledge assets are managed effectively, underpinning innovation and competitive advantage.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Evaluate the contributing factors that lead to the need for knowledge management;
  • Analyse the effect of the knowledge economy on organisations and, in particular, knowledge management in organisations;
  • Interrogate key concepts regarding knowledge management in organisations;
  • Critically evaluate the strategic importance of knowledge management;
  • Evaluate the business value of knowledge management;
  • Examine knowledge processes and their influence on a knowledge management strategy;
  • Expound on the SECI process and its relation to knowledge management;
  • Develop and implement a knowledge management strategy;
  • Assess the technology needed to support a knowledge management strategy in organisations;
  • Implement knowledge management projects in organisations;
  • Implement knowledge management strategies holistically in an organisation;
  • Evaluate the role of people, processes and technology in the implementation of holistic knowledge management;
  • Critically explain the success and failure factors of knowledge management.

Mergers and Acquisitions

Course overview

The mergers and acquisitions environment is inevitably complex. This course interrogates the importance and value of synergy in potential mergers and acquisitions, and discusses success and failure factors.

You will evaluate merger tools, tactics and techniques, along with legal considerations. You will also review the due diligence process, look at how banks approach mergers, and examine the role of culture, strategy, customers and suppliers in delivering a merger.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Understand and explain the concept of subsidiaries and distinguish the different types;
  • Distinguish green-field venture strategies from acquisitions;
  • Discriminate between mergers and acquisitions;
  • Assess the value of synergy in a potential merger and acquisition;
  • Discuss in-depth, success and failure factors related to mergers and acquisitions;
  • Evaluate preferred tools/ tactics/ techniques in the management of mergers and acquisitions;
  • Identify and evaluate major legal considerations for successful mergers/ acquisitions and strategic alliances;
  • Critically discuss legal and regulatory requirements of mergers and acquisitions;
  • Identify and justify the key areas of a due diligence in merger and acquisition processes;
  • Structure a due diligence process;
  • Analyse how banks approach mergers and acquisitions;
  • Assess labour aspects of mergers and acquisitions; and
  • Evaluate the role of culture, strategy, customers and suppliers in delivering a merger.

Mentoring and Coaching

Course overview

This course will take you on an exciting journey to the very heart of effective leadership.

You will evaluate merger tools, tactics and techniques, along with legal considerations. You will also review the due diligence process, look at how banks approach mergers, and examine the role of culture, strategy, customers and suppliers in delivering a merger.

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Distinguish between the concepts “mentoring” and “coaching”.
  • Evaluate the theory and knowledge associated with mentoring and coaching.
  • Identify the need for mentoring and coaching through discussions with the person to be mentored or coached.
  • Identify and critically analyse possible problems that may occur.
  • Describe alternative arrangements for coaching and mentoring.
  • Develop a plan for individual mentoring and coaching.
  • Apply the communication skills and techniques required of a mentor or coach.
  • Develop a plan for a mentorship programme in the workplace.
  • Identify and evaluate the importance and benefits of mentoring.
  • Monitor mentee’s/coachee’s ongoing progress and provide on-going feedback in the workplace.

Performance Management

Course overview

The future is not like the past or the present – the world is not predictable. Managers and their employees are increasingly challenged by change. Change brings with it new organisational structures which have consequences for performance management – structures that are not bound by place, in which teams are formed, dissolved, and reformed based on changing business needs. How do performance systems continue to function under these conditions?

They must continue to align the work of individuals and teams with the organisation's strategic objectives. This course explores performance management from several viewpoints, including a systems approach; measurement approaches; and examines a range of corporate performance management systems and their implications for human resources

Learning outcomes

Upon completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Critically explain performance management terminology, concepts, definitions, models and techniques;
  • Understand and interrogate how performance management interrelates with the organisation’s strategy, culture, structure and systems;
  • Examine the role of the manager/leader in implementing a performance management system;
  • Evaluate the critical success factors of a performance management system;
  • Set performance goals and indicators and conduct performance appraisals and reviews; and
  • Manage change within the context of introducing a performance management system.