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Advanced Management Certificate Programme

The certificate programme "Advanced Management" gives you new impulses for the further development of your leadership skills. The programme provides you with essential methods and skills to develop companies innovatively and effectively in a VUCA world.

Please note: the programme is taught in German.


The module "Leadership & Strategy" first shows how today's changes present managers with new challenges and develops strategies for managing the VUCA world. In addition, the module focuses on leadership approaches that enable decision-makers to adequately align themselves, their teams, business units and the entire company to the challenges of digital transformation.

The second module provides a compact introduction to the topic of "Innovation & Change". The module uses many practical examples and field reports to illustrate how innovative processes and products can be integrated into your company. Generate a detailed understanding about strategies and their requirements, about challenges for implementing strategies in a changing work environment, and how entrepreneurial thinking and acting can help to develop an existing company efficiently and innovatively. In the course of this, you will also learn to lead design thinking processes and apply methods.

The focus of the third module "Digital Marketing & Business Ethics" is initially on the customer perspective on the digital transformation. You will get an overview of the changed customer journey in an omnichannel environment with new touchpoints and changed decision-making processes and learn to place new products and ideas with the help of targeted marketing strategies. The module and the programme are rounded off with the topic of Corporate Social & Digital Responsibility: Discover the central area of tension between technology, economics and ethics and recognize the opportunities and risks of a digital transformation in this context.

Participants, who wish to build a solid foundation in the area of finance, can additionaly book the optional module „Finance for Non-Financial Managers"

Key Facts



Issued by University of Cologne Business School

Module 1: VUKA & Digital Leadership

In a changeable environment - today called the VUCA world - organisations can only survive if they react flexibly to changes and if managers provide framework conditions that make this possible. In this module, you will learn specifically how to align your leadership actions appropriately for the challenges in the VUCA world.

Day 1 - Leadership Strategies for the VUCA World

  • VUCA world as a starting point: New leadership in a changing world.
  • Principles of new leadership:
    • Purpose
    • Focus (Self-management)
    • Adaption
    • Self-organization
    • Confidence
    • Trust
    • Systemic thinking

Day 2 – Digital Leadership

  • From Leadership to Digital Leadership
  • Overview of selected key trends
  • Challenges of digital leadership through "Digital Transformation" on three levels:
  • I: Mindset: individual attitude & innovation orientation.
  • II: Knowledge & Skills: Concepts & Methods
  • III: Fields of action and implementation
  • Promoting innovative behavior in organisations
  • Building a digital and innovative culture

Module 2: Innovation & Change

Radical changes in technological, political, economic and environmental areas mean that companies often have to adapt their strategies within a very short time.

In this course, you will generate a detailed understanding of strategy and the associated requirements as well as challenges for implementing strategy in a changing work environment.


Day 3 – Strategy in transition

  • The challenge of innovation management
  • Basics of strategy and change
  • Causes and effects of strategic adjustments
  • Systematic analysis methods for successful strategy work
  • Intensive application of the tools and concepts taught (case study work)

Day 4 – Entrepreneurship

  • Concepts, theories and methods of start-up entrepreneurship, intrapreneurship and corporate entrepreneurship.
  • Social Entrepreneurship: how can I contribute to a positive change in society as an entrepreneur
  • Entrepreneurial Networks: the relevance of networks for the realization of entrepreneurial projects

Day 5 – Design Thinking Workshop

  • The emergence of Design Thinking as an innovation driver
  • Focus on users: Design Thinking as an interdisciplinary method for complex problem-solving
  • The Design Thinking Mindset
  • Organisational conditions for Design Thinking
  • The Design Thinking process, case studies and methods

Module 3: Digital Marketing & Business Ethics

Digital transformations are currently changing the marketing landscape at a breathtaking pace. It is therefore more important than ever for managers to implement the changing challenges in their digital marketing strategies.

The course teaches key skills to confidently manage the regularly expanding digital marketing tools and also takes a close look at current trends such as social media and influencer marketing.

Day 6 – Digital Marketing

  • The digital transformation in marketing
  • Digital communication, especially social media and influencer marketing
  • Digital distribution, especially customer journey in an omni-channel environment

Day 7 – Digitalethics and Corporate Digital Responsibility

  • Fundamentals of ethics
  • Ethical aspects of digitisation
  • Corporate Digital Responsibility
  • Seven approaches to corporate digital responsibility
  • Bain pyramid and value positioning
  • The CDR initiative of the BMJV
  • Looking to the future

Optional Modul: Finance for Non-Financial Managers

During the two-day module, you will engage with the latest findings from science and practice in interactive formats, apply them to your professional context, and evaluate concrete approaches to solutions: for decision-making, increasing corporate value, and sustainable economic growth.


Day 1 - Finance I

  •  Value-based management I: the role of the manager
  •  Liquidity, profitability and financing: what role does the finance department play in the company's success?
  •  Interpreting financial ratios: the business reality behind the numbers.
  •  Value-based management II: How do financial ratios help in managing scarce resources?
  •  Stability in uncertain times: Volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity

Day 2 - Finance II

  • Corporate valuation: forms and effects on strategy and enterprise value
  • Corporate finance: Financing growth and supporting strategic development
  • Mergers, mergers & acquisitions: Drivers of corporate value
  • Communication: Shareholder and stakeholder, internal and external

All information at a glance

  • Expert knowledge at first hand
  • Imparting methodological knowledge and skills as important elements of modern leadership
  • Varied format with practical knowledge transfer, case studies and group work
  • Expansion of personal network through managers from other companies
  • Acquisition of the "Advanced Management" certificate of the Business School of the University of Cologne