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Immersive Experiences

In today’s business environment – volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous – companies must innovate to survive. And, they can no longer depend just on their research and development groups for that innovation; leaders must learn to engage in and lead innovation across their organizations.

In the Berkeley MBA for Executives Program, these innovative leader capabilities are delivered specifically through three, inter-linked courses:

  • Leadership Communications—This Term 1 intensive 4-day course provides you with the capabilities to become an authentic leader.
    • The journey includes the development of EQ (Emotional Intelligence) based people skills such as interpersonal communication and presentation skills, the art of empathy, telling your leadership story and the power of leadership presence.
    • You will learn how to motivate and inspire your audience, regardless of size, circumstances or subject matter.
    • Much of the course focuses on becoming an inspirational leader. Voice, body language, self-confidence, powers of conviction, intention and utilizing the power of knowledge are some of the key skills introduced.
    • In addition, you will be introduced to the art of self-reflection, empowering your work group, building a support system and learning from your successes and failures.
  • Building Trust-Based Relationships—This extended course, which takes place in both Terms 2 and 3, helps first to reinforce and further develop the mindsets and skills learned in Leadership Communications, through hands-on workshops and peer coaching. It then goes on to further explore how to use dialogue and empathy to build trust-based relationships with others.

  • Applied Innovation—This course gives you the opportunity to put your innovation skills to work.
    • In Term 3 you will put your baseline skills to the test in a series of short innovation projects, while also learning additional skills, including observation, framing and reframing, diverging and converging, and iterative prototyping and experimentation.
    • In the subsequent months, you then apply your innovation skills to projects in your own organizations working with both peer and faculty coaches as you fine-tune your use of these capabilities.
    • Two subsequent one-week Applied Innovation workshops—in Washington D.C. in Term 4, and in Shanghai in Term 5—serve to cement your innovative leader skills as you work in teams with your fellow students.

The Berkeley MBA for Executives Program also focuses on developing well-rounded leaders through immersive courses in vibrant business environments, led by Haas faculty members:

  • Silicon Valley Immersion—This week-long course in Term 2 introduces students to the entrepreneurial environment of Silicon Valley and the San Francisco Bay Area. Through case-based curriculum, guest speakers, visits to some of the most interesting, emerging companies in the area and an all-star venture capital panel, students fully engage in the unique business culture of the area.
  • DC Immersion—In Term 4, students participate in a domestic trip to Washington, DC to develop an understanding of how government and public policy impacts one's business, industry and the overall economy. Through classroom sessions, guest speakers, visits to branches of government and policy makers, students learn how Washington works and how to leverage their new understanding in their current roles.
  • International Immersion—In Term 5, students engage in an international seminar to focus on understanding a business environment outside of the U.S. The week-long course includes classroom sessions, guest speakers and visits to companies.


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Faculty Profile

Mark Rittenberg

Mark Rittenberg


Mark Rittenberg, PhD, teaches leadership communications in the MBA for Executives Program. From workshops for Israeli and Palestinian youth to Black communities in post-Apartheid South Africa and U.S. university classrooms, Rittenberg uses the power of communications to help organizations create communities of excellence and empowers individuals to become true leaders.

"Executive MBA students have already established themselves as leaders," says Rittenberg. "Having leadership communications as a core requirement sets the stage for these individuals to become inspirational and motivational leaders, along with applying their skills of finance, economics, venture capital, and so on."

Visit Rittenberg's Faculty Page to Learn More