The Global Management Challenge launched in the country in 2015 to give young professionals, youth, and students an opportunity to develop the practical skills required to grow and manage businesses.Developed by management researchers from the University of Strathclyde in Scotland 35 years ago, the GMC has grown to become the biggest management simulator in the world.
Students from Kenyatta University; Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture & Technology; the University of Nairobi and Strathmore University, as well as professionals pursuing the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) qualification will also be taking part in the competition this year.
Over the course of the competition, female leadership has continued to grow, with 51 of the 94 student teams being captained by women this year. “As an employer, I have a keen interest in getting access to a well-developed talent pool,” explained Asim Shah, Co-Director of the GMC in Kenya, on the reason why the competition was launched in Kenya.
“Companies invest heavily in training employees in order get the best possible performance from them. We are working with several businesses and partners, through the GMC, to help develop a culture of self-learning among young people, and expose them to leadership in business. The previous editions of the GMC have also demonstrated that success in entrepreneurship is gender neutral.”
The highly competitive rounds will see 112 teams knocked down to 32 teams after the first round and finally to eight teams for the national finals.
The winning team will represent Kenya at the international finals that will be held in Doha, Qatar, in April 2017. The previous edition of the competition saw a young team from Kenyatta University emerge among the top 10 globally, out of a total of 7,000 teams that participated across the globe.
The competition, structured around building a virtual business, will give participants practical skills in problem-solving, and develop their analytical ability.“We need to expose young people to what management demands, to provide them with an aspiration that they can work towards every day,” Vicky Karuga, Managing Director of Profiles International TMS (K) said.
Previous participants of the competition have got the chance to apply the lessons they have learned after securing entry-level professional jobs with GMC partners as well as with other companies including Deloitte and KPMG. The GMC Kenya team plans to roll out the competition in the rest of East Africa and aims at working with leading companies to realize its vision.
This article was first published in Capital Business.