Lagos Business School: a business academy for a rising economy

Business education is set to surge in Africa. Lagos Business School is prepared for this

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Entrance to the Lagos Business School campus. The school has become a global leader in business education, and has recently announced exciting plans to run a full-time MBA programme

In a global business environment driven by change, forward-looking business institutes are continually looking to maintain a competitive edge. Lagos Business School (LBS) is no different. Established in 1991 to offer Nigerian managers the best of management education, LBS has since expanded its robust knowledge of business to include not only Africa but also the globe in its outlook.

Thanks to this sense of dynamism, LBS has remained in the coveted Financial Times ranking of top open-enrolment programme providers for eight years in a row. But that is not to say the school is going to be resting on its laurels anytime soon. “A good business school goes beyond just having an undergraduate and masters programme in business administration”, according to Dr Enase Okonedo, Dean of LBS. “It must offer courses similar to those that exist in global business schools.” This is a tall order indeed, but one that LBS is poised to meet in the near future.

LBS will be running a full-time MBA programme designed to prepare managers for an increasingly complex global
business environment

From September 2015, LBS will be running a full-time MBA programme designed to prepare managers for an increasingly complex global business environment. The new 18-month programme requires that applicants have a minimum of three years’ post-qualification work experience rather than just one. Applicants can also embark on international exchange programmes for elective courses upon successful admission. Dr Okonedo explains that this restructuring is an attempt to meet a likely rise in demand for management education across Africa in the next 20 years: “LBS is poised to tap into this upsurge. Even though our graduates regularly receive favourable reviews, we strive for continuous improvement in providing the quality management education expected from our institution.”

Connections and entrepreneurship
In recent months, LBS has been forging a range of partnerships and affiliations, which not only boost its brand image but also establish opportunities for students to get a truly international management education. The school is now a full member of the European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD), one of the leading international networks in management development and accreditation. It is also affiliated with the Global Network for Advanced Management, IESEG School of Management and IPADE Business School, among a long list of others.

Dr Okonedo is a strong advocate of entrepreneurship. She cites the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Report 2014 in asserting that Nigeria and Zambia lead the world rankings in early-stage entrepreneurial activity. Any business school worth its salt should be able to hone such skills, as far as she is concerned: “The multiplier effect of a business startup has more effect on the economy because the higher the number of entrepreneurs, the higher the number of jobs created. This is where business education comes in.”

Achieving results
LBS faculty members and students would appear to agree. Earlier this year, Dr Tunji Adegbesan co-founded mobile learning platform Gidi Mobile with several MBA students. Gidi Mobile aims to reduce the failure rates in Nigeria’s secondary school leaving exams. To do this, the application updates users with practice questions drawn from various professions and syllabuses to help them excel in their preferred fields of study.

MBA student Onyanta Adama made the shortlist for the 2014 FT MBA Challenge with UK charity World Child Cancer. She joined five other students from Lagos and abroad to draft a plan on how Ghana could treat childhood cancer in a self-sustainable manner.

Schools focused on business education may never be in short supply, but LBS is convinced it will stand out from the crowd, no matter the situation. This is no small conviction, but it is one backed by a mix of innovation, originality and relevance.