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Leadership Specialization

The MBA (L) program is designed to enable mid-career professionals to enhance their leadership management capabilities and to become exceptional leaders in a broad range of organizations.

Our faculty specialize in leadership theory and practice and will help you develop advanced competencies, skills and behaviours required to lead people and organizations through complex issues.

This program will enable you to respond strategically to management challenges and work towards your career goals, without leaving the workforce. Upon completion of the MBA Leadership stream, students will have a comprehensive knowledge of fundamental and contemporary leadership theories, enhanced by the ability to creatively integrate leadership around current issues of managing people, leading change, and developing personal and professional competencies in a variety of challenging contexts.


MBA (L) students take 10 core MBA courses plus 4 Leadership courses:

Leading for Success

This course will provide a platform for the future practice of those skills in an organization by facilitating the student’s ability to develop interpersonal skills from a leadership perspective and by enhancing the student’s ability to build additional leadership capacity and capability. Topics such as leadership theory, essential leadership practices, conflict management, communication and values and ethics, will be covered. Course learning components include a research project requiring the study and analysis of current leadership practices in an organization.


  • Gain a basic familiarity with evidence-based knowledge about leading and managing people within an organization
  • Develop an appreciation of the range of individual differences and perspectives and how this impacts leadership relationships in organizations
  • Develop an understanding of what constitutes legal and ethical behaviour within the workplace relating to people management issues
  • Improve the student’s interpersonal, communication, and leadership skills in larger groups and smaller task-based teams


  • Identify and diagnose common leadership problems in organizations and develop appropriate interventions that facilitate effective adaptation.
  • Assess human capacity in organizations and apply behavior theory to identify methods of capacity enhancement.
  • Identify the affect of hierarchy, structure, and culture on organizational activity and use this knowledge to inform leadership practices.

Leading in Complexity

This course is designed to build upon the skills developed in the core course, BUSI 6990, Strategic Leadership and Change.  It explores the theory and practice of change and a leader’s role in innovatively facilitating adaptation in complex organizational systems. Course learning components include the analysis of organizational environments and activities and the development of appropriate change initiatives derived from that analysis.


  • Identify how to apply strategies to create change at the individual, team and organizational levels.
  • Understand organizations as complex entities that require carefully considered methods of stakeholder engagement.
  • Understand contemporary theories and models of organizational complexity and the role of leadership in fostering appropriate organizational adaptation
  • Describe and apply organizational change theory to analyze and assess the consequences of organizational change and to determine effective adaptation.


  • Diagnose the need for organizational change and persuade stakeholders to support and implement appropriate change initiatives.
  • Assess the effectiveness of organizational practices and adapt in ways that enhance organizational success.
  • Identify how to implement and lead forward both small and large-scale change initiatives that have a good probability of success.

Leading in Context

This course will introduce students to leading through a variety of leadership contexts, such as multinational organizations, distributed teams, cross—cultural, cross-sectoral, unionized and multi-generational workforces, etc.  Action learning components include research that leads to the development of a strategic practice-focused leadership case study.


  • Be able to conceptualize, design and lead strategic initiatives in varying global and intellectual contexts.
  • Understand leadership as a fluid set of skills that may change depending on the context.
  • Understand the importance of context as a predictor of leadership effectiveness.
  • Explore essential cross-disciplinary management theories related to collaboration, stakeholder engagement, leadership, multicultural issues, etc.


  • Build leadership capacity for both personal and organizational flexibility in complex adaptive situations.
  • Identify and apply effective practices for leading in global, multicultural and distributed contexts.
  • Practice useful models of stakeholder engagement that align with complex conditions and situations.

Leading Professionally

This course builds students’ personal and professional capacity to act appropriately as a leader in today’s global organization.  Anchored in concepts such as self-management, engagement, complexity and innovation, this course enables students to explore and hone qualitative skills and behaviours related to leadership development and career management. Course learning components include the development of an Individual Effectiveness Plan that includes self-evaluation against specific metrics; incorporating feedback from subordinates, peers, and superiors; identifying strategies for honing specific skills; and crafting milestones that all the student to gauge progress.


  • Build leadership capacity for both personal and organizational flexibility in complex adaptive situations.
  • Hone practical skills in self-reflection (the ability to reflect on experiences and capture lessons learned) and deliberate practice
  • Develop strong presentational, negotiation and conflict management skills.
  • Enhance individual decision-making capability.


  • Leverage awareness and knowledge related to self-management in order to succeed in teams and organizations.
  • Synthesize and reflect upon the theory and practice of topics related to values based management and responsible leadership.
  • Gain confidence in acting as a professional leader and manager in today’s complex organizations.