OSCAR VISITS HARVARD BUSINESS SCHOOL

As you know, I had the privilege of attending the course in Building Business in Emerging Markets (BBEM) during the week of the 13th of April. I came back another business person as this initiative with executive fellows from around the world gave me a clear perspective of our future, a truly exceptional experience that I would like to share with you. In the next coming weeks I am going to discuss with you my vision for our Group of Companies.

Navigating today’s complex business world requires confidence, vision and strategy that hopefully will drive tangible business results. I had the fortune of meeting with extraordinary leaders with a global curriculum second to none. I have been challenged by my peers on many assumptions, disrupted on my way of doing business and shown unexpected ways of thinking.

Firstly, we had to study 18 case studies and express our views in front of professors and peers. Secondly, we started a powerful, profound and proven way of active learning with practical insights that helped us all to hone our analytical skills and transformed us into a more strategic decision maker and effective leader than I was. We studied the cases of Farmacias Similares (Farmacias SIMI) and Banco Compartamos of Mexico, Nokia in Sweden, Unilever in India, Novozymes in China, Glo in Nigeria and Airtel in the DRC Congo.

I have found the HBS Faculty a World Class Institution. The course was taught by renowned full time HBS faculty members, no exceptions. They gave us practical business expertise and proprietary research which was provocative to say the least. What I have brought back with me is a very clear idea of how to operate in emerging markets, what to do in going forward and how to do it!

When working at the bottom of the pyramid (4,5 out of 6,7 Billion population) it is of paramount importance to be involved in Corporate Social Responsibility, something regarding as essential in today’s modern business world, amongst other responsibilities.

his was a dynamic learning environment with an enlightened perspective on the world economy, trends and best practices in EM. This was leadership education at its best. This is a forum where world leaders convene. In fact one of our professors is an advisor to President Barack Obama (Prof Tarun Khanna) and they had students like former Presidents, current and past Ministers of Economy of numerous countries as well as several Nobel Prize winners. In total we were 28 students from 17 countries, in groups of 8 per floor and team (same floor same team). The camaraderie was excellent and indeed, we started now our forum on several topics regarding micro lending, luso-phone countries investments, etc. The accommodation and food were of five star class A truly humbling experience for me, which I will cherish for the rest of my life.