When students graduate from Stanford GSB, they face a world that expects them to demonstrate talent, knowledge, and a capacity for effective leadership. Developing this capacity requires practice.
Traditional leadership curriculum often fails to challenge students in a way that compels them to reflect on their own personal leadership capacities, and to improve them. Stanford GSB’s Initiative for Leadership Education and Development — or I-LEAD — is designed to significantly increase the capacity of our MBA students in a different way. Our approach involves rigorous application of personal experiential testing, analysis, and reflection that unfolds in multiple steps, including formal classes (both required and optional) and structured, on-going coaching opportunities.
Therefore, the “I” in I-LEAD doesn’t just stand for “initiative.” We expect students to actually lead in our programs, so that students can confidently claim “I lead” after completing the curriculum. Among other leadership programming, I-LEAD hosts the Executive Challenge, the innovative Leadership Labs that form an important component of the students’ autumn-quarter curriculum, and the highly selective and sought-after Arbuckle Leadership Fellows program for second-year Stanford MBA students.