Shorter programs are for executives looking to develop further expertise in an area. They're not looking to be transformed; they're not even looking to identify strongly with the school. They just need to know something about a specific topic. Short classes can also help refresh courses you've already had.Any tips on selecting a course?Get referrals. It's valuable to hear another person talk about what they took away from a course. It will help you decide and may also enable you to withstand the challenges you might get from others within your organization [regarding your time away from work].How do you prepare for taking a short, targeted course?Think about what questions you want answered and take an active role in the learning. Otherwise you might be in there passively, hearing what's going on but lacking focus.What should you do to get the most out of an executive education course?Being open to the experience is the most important thing you can do. Next, clear the decks back home. Make sure your boss and colleagues know that you're going to be away for a while and that you won't be responding to every e-mail. The whole idea is to take a step away from the urgent and look at the important. In the future, we're actually thinking of getting some sort of buy-in from bosses by having them sign something before their employees come.
Also, ask specific questions. You're going to get more attention. Have dinner with a professor or a participant you think has an area of knowledge you'd like to explore. Be proactive in approaching people. By Lauren Gard