General information

Values-Based Leadership
Focused on Applying the Highest Moral and Ethical Standards to Management Decisions

Our culture is built on a foundation of values-based leadership and doing what’s right. Nothing is more important to us than applying moral and ethical standards to management decisions.

Our faculty shape and reinforce our culture. Innovators at the frontiers of knowledge, they share their insights and expertise in the classroom—and work with you to hone your skills. They will challenge you to lead responsibly, drawing on their latest research on leadership in practice, case studies and lessons from top executives. Our educational goals for our students are to:

  • Be able to work well in teams and to lead teams effectively.
  • Apply moral and ethical standards to management decisions.
  • Use appropriate models for analysis and planning.
  • Integrate multiple functional areas.

Our leadership and career development training emphasizes self-evaluation to improve your leadership skills, position you for immediate post-MBA success and propel you forward for long-term achievement in your career.

The two-year skills and training program emphasizes responsible business practices, and you will benefit from workshops, professional coaching and feedback. You  will also receive a 360-degree peer leadership evaluation and craft a personal leadership development plan.

In fall 2008, UC Davis MBA students initiated and signed a pledge committing to: “Complete my degree with honesty and integrity” and to “hold myself and my classmates to the highest standards of honor from this day forward.”

Professional Development Seminar

The Professional Development Seminar focuses on career exploration and development designed to help you structure your internship search as well as develop your readiness to present yourself in a variety of ways—in writing, in-person, on the telephone, through email, and through social media.

  • Year One: To prepare you for your job search and strengthen your leadership potential, you engage in a series of workshops, activities and assignments—in groups, in small teams and individually.Sessions prepare you to present yourself effectively, create your Internship Action Plan, and craft your Leadership Development Plan. Building industry relationships and expanding your professional connections is a recurring theme throughout the course. This course focuses on the critical concepts and actions needed to secure your summer internship, and lays the foundation for your long-term career success.
  • Year Two:  Your second year builds upon this foundation while shifting the focus to career positions. To succeed in your job search and strengthen your leadership, you engage in a series of actions and assignments to execute your Job Search Plan and reflect on your personal leadership development. This year focuses on the critical actions needed to secure your first post-MBA job, and also positions you to excel in that role and beyond.

Robert A. Fox Executive-in-Residence

Each year the UC Davis Graduate School of Management invites a prominent executive to teach a quarter-long MBA course that reflects their management expertise. The Robert A. Fox Executive-in-Residence gives students and faculty a unique opportunity to work closely with a top business leader. In addition to class lectures, the Executive-in-Residence invites other high-level executives to the class, meets with students informally, and brings a real world perspective to the school.

Our Spring 2012 Robert A. Fox Executive-in-Residence is Kevin M. Bacon. Bacon brings more than 30 years of experience providing consulting services to public sector organizations. He has worked with public agencies at the Federal, state and local levels in implementing large projects designed to improve the quality, cost and timeliness of service delivery.

Dean’s Distinguished Speakers

Our Dean’s Distinguished Speakers, Executives-in-Residence and other guest speakers share their experiences in small, informal events and seminars. You’ll have the opportunity to ask questions and probe the leadership style of successful business executives. Recent speakers include:

  • Bernard J. Tyson, president and COO, Kaiser Permanente
  • Anne Gates, executive vice president and chief financial officer, Disney Consumer Products (DCP)
  • Rick Ridgeway, vice president of environmental initiatives and special media projects, Patagonia
  • Mark Hoplamazian, President & CEO, Hyatt Hotel Corp.

Leadership Coursework

Building on themes throughout the UC Davis MBA curriculum, these courses have a particular focus on leadership for our students.

  • Corporate Governance – This course discusses various methods of providing good governance that help company managers meet their own goals as well as those of shareholders and the general public. The course will be valuable to current and prospective shareholders and directors, and to managers who wish to operate their organizations with effective governance. Corporate governance comprises law, economics, finance, accounting and auditing, sociology, psychology and political science.
  • Leadership – This course will focus on effective strategies for leading and managing companies. CEOs and business leaders are scheduled to speak in class and share their experiences in leadership. The course will include strategies and tools applicable for managers at all organizational levels.
  • Managing People in Modern Organizations – Students will apply concepts regarding the management of work and the employment relationship by comparatively analyzing the employment systems and management practices of two firms in the same industry. They will focus on how the firms organize their work and employees in response to the environments they face. They will also look at how these conditions affect the choices the firms make in governing and managing their workers – the decisions as to wages, benefits, working conditions, ways of organizing work, and other management policies and practices.
  • Power and Influence in Management – Examines the various bases of subunit and individual power in organizations and the different means by which such power is translated into influence. Explores the positive and negative effects power and its use can have on organizational effectiveness and employee career choices. The ethics of power and influence will be of recurrent concern throughout the course.