Comprehensive Management Programmes

Senior Management Development Programme (SMDP)

Course modalities & Duration:
Remote - 6 months Blended - 6 months
Price from:
R66 900 INCL VAT

Interested? Enquire now:

Interested? Enquire now:


Effective leaders know that, in the world of business, the only constant is, and will forever be, change. The changes within are increasing exponentially and at a more rapid pace than ever before. Leaders are introduced to new organisational concepts, new business models, new technologies, and new consumer needs every day. It is an intricate and dynamic environment that can pose many challenges for leaders who are not prepared. This programme equips senior leaders with the tools necessary to transform these challenges into opportunities and help them become agents of change for their teams and organisation at large. It aims to broaden their worldview and empower them to become and remain resilient and agile leaders.

It will shift their thinking towards the future and equip them with the tools, techniques, and knowledge necessary to be better prepared for what is currently happening and yet to come. It nurtures a strategic and design-thinking mindset, as we explore concepts around strategic innovation, sustainability, and collaboration, as well as organisational change, business agility, and financial viability. Participants will thus be able to shift their paradigms from contributing at a functional level to impacting the organisation at a strategic level.

Who is this course for?

Experienced senior managers who manage other middle / senior managers, and who are needing to develop an agile, strategic, and design-thinking mindset in an ever-changing business environment.

Why choose this course?

The SMDP is a comprehensive 6-month programme that focuses on (1) Economics: Understanding Markets, (2) Leadership in a Complex World, (3) A Contextual Understanding of Mega Trends, (4) Digital Transformation, (5) Marketing and Managing Brand, (6) Designing Leading Edge Strategies, (7) Sustainable Competitiveness, (8) Enhancing Innovation and Design Thinking, (9) Building Human Capital, (10) Financial Management, and (11) Operational Effectiveness and Value Chain Analysis.

Participants are guided on their learning journey by a Learning Process Facilitator (LPF). The LPF plays the vital role of mediator, mentor, and advisor to participants and groups. The LPF is present in every class and is responsible for (1) ensuring that session outcomes are achieved (2) that all participants take active part in discussions, and (3) that facilitators address all questions and concerns fairly, clearly, and in a manner that supports understanding.

Upon successful completion of the programme, participants receive a Stellenbosch University Certificate of Competence and, subject to specific requirements, are able to apply for the recognition of 240 credits within the present curriculum of Lincoln University’s BA(Hons) Programme, as well as the recognition of 17 credits within the present curriculum of the University of the Free State’s Bachelor’s Degree of Management and Leadership (BML).

Over the course of 6 months, participants will be equipped to:

Demonstrate business acumen and entrepreneurial thinking and show how this impacts the bottom line.
Explain how the basic operations of an economy impacts organisational decision-making.
Describe and demonstrate an understanding of the key concepts of managerial finance.
Explain how marketing and customer service can lead to improved customer experience and organisational growth.
Demonstrate leadership competence through an understanding of the future-fit capabilities.
Explain techniques that may be used to enhance diversity and inclusion and employee engagement.
Implement human resources management practices.

Admission Requirements

No formal tertiary qualification is required.

3 to 5 years of senior management experience.

English language competence at NQF 4 level / equivalent.

Foundational knowledge of business and management.

What our participants had to say

"SMDP has helped me, as a manager, to ask the right questions. I have grown from managing productivity to taking care of the workforce that report to me."

- Lucky Selowa

"The SMDP has exposed me to methodologies and processes that are very different to the way that I had operated within my own environment previously. I have experienced the value of linking my SMDP learnings to the rapidly changing environment. I absolutely relished the learning experience from start to end, and the application thereof has enhanced my thinking and leadership exponentially. "

- Jillian Brikkels

"When I started my SMDP course at USB, I was 3months into a new role I had been recently promoted to at work. The insights gained from the programme- have helped to enhance my strategic thought processes, and equipped me as a manager, with the necessary leadership and project management skills necessary to perform in this transitional business world. I’ve also developed more knowledge in financial statements which were not my strengths prior to the course."

- Sbu Koyana

"The team-based environment enabled me to learn from others, to accept and share ideas, to accept risks and rewards together - but most importantly and unconsciously - to build a solid business together. It forced me to think out of the box, to understand the dynamics of the organisation and to be a creative leader."

- Darren Moodley

"I’ve seen a great improvement with my relationships at a personal and professional sphere. I have a stronger relationship with my line manager, and I provide more input in projects and developments around our team. My focus on creating opportunities for the group, as opposed to the business unit, has developed much more in that I am able to refer credible leads to other businesses in the group."

- Tshepho Ledwaba

"The highlight of my experience was interacting with different people from different countries who have diverse backgrounds with the aim to achieve a common goal. The contributions, inclusion, support, disagreements, and consensus were phenomenal. The impacts of the project on my personal life were ‘the conscious urge to always give a helping hand!’ and also the value in identifying untapped resources to generate passive income. USB-ED has helped me to bridge my competency and developmental gaps, such as improving my innovative mindset and empowering me to think “without the box."

- Sola Ogunsakin

"The Senior Management Development Programme (SMDP) has turned me to be a better leader and family man. The learnings are relevant to my day-to-day life, and beyond that, my organisation has made big strides with the implementation of new ways that I managed to share with my peers since completing the programme. Speaking from a personal perspective, I am in a better state mentally and psychologically since completing the programme, and all these are important in my endeavours of becoming a better leader."

- Amos Xheko

"Embrace the journey that the programme takes you through. There will be ups and downs, but the end result is worth it. Almost two years later not only does our team have a strong bond but also through the networking of the program you have a greater understanding of the business which allows for collaboration."

- Karishma Singh

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