‘There is a great need for accountants to work “out of the box”‘ – opening the lid is Steve Robinson, MBA FCMA FCCA, director of the Ashridge Executive MBA programme.
Certified accountant Robinson joined Ashridge with the conviction that the MBA is one way that accountants can be encouraged to embrace wider business disciplines. By attracting candidates from a variety of professions and world leading organisations, the former principal lecturer in financial management at Manchester Metropolitan university aims to maintain focus on applying techniques in real business situations.
Robinson teaches finance on all MBA options and takes a leading role in programme development and marketing. He successfully advanced a new consortium programme – the European Partnership MBA – for Deutsche Bank, Lufthansa and Merck KGaA, which premiered at Ashridge this year. ‘I’m delighted with the mix of business sectors and functional experience we have achieved,’ he said. Detailed planning and design were priorities in achieving the right relationship with the partners. Adopting an integrated approach steers Robinson away from a purely financial focus. Robinson sees the consulting project as a vital part of all Ashridge MBAs. Of strategic or operational importance to the sponsor and counting for a hefty 40% of the overall qualification, the project emphasises Robinson’s commitment to tackling issues outside the classroom.
New for 98 is the entrepreneurial project option, which Robinson plans will realise candidates’ ambitions of starting their own business. ‘I think I have one of the best jobs around … I believe I’m meeting the challenges of the directorship but as in any service business the customers are the judges. Fortunately, they are voting with their feet and applications are rising.’