Engage with foremost thinkers in business strategy and management at a pivotal moment in inclusive finance.
The Harvard Business School (HBS)-Accion Program on Strategic Leadership in Inclusive Finance provides high-level management and leadership training to those who are reshaping the financial system for underserved populations by expanding access to critical financial tools.
The intensive six-day program offers leaders from around the world—spanning the private, public, and social sectors—an exceptional opportunity to connect with outstanding peers, engage with HBS faculty’s leading experts, and gain insights from rapid shifts in the inclusive finance space amid unprecedented global challenges. The HBS Executive Education learning model immerses participants in a transformational experience that combines the best of strategic thinking with the most important advances in financial inclusion, digital technology, and impact investing to elicit a deeper understanding of the opportunities and challenges in the years ahead.
This program brings together CEOs of leading microfinance institutions, executives of mainstream banks, technology entrepreneurs, investors, financial regulators and managers of developmental agencies and specialized network leaders, from across the globe, to better understand the past, gauge the present and envision the future in the digital age.
The program is designed to provide participants with an understanding of the key factors behind the success of some of the current leaders of the microfinance revolution and extend their thinking to the emergence of the new fintech models enabled by the digital age. In doing so, the program will explore some of the more innovative models around the world. Building on that platform, the program seeks to draw lessons, both for incumbents and challengers, on possible strategies to attain success and avoid failures in bringing financial access to the majority of the population.
The program also addresses key strategic issues arising from the dual goals of economic and social value creation:
- How new business models in this space—especially technology-enhanced models—succeed or flounder
- How to successfully compete in highly competitive markets
- How to balance one’s social mission with financial considerations
- How to stay abreast of rapidly evolving products and delivery channels
- How inclusive financial service providers are helping vulnerable populations enter the digital economy
Participants will learn primarily through the case study approach as pioneered by HBS. Through these guided case discussions, participants work collaboratively to identify practical business strategies from the experiences of leading institutions. Prior preparation of the cases is essential, reinforced by study groups in the morning before classes and at lunchtime. Participation in class is central to the learning experience. Forced to take a stand and then reflecting on how it is impacted by their peer’s point of view enables participants to think in ways they would not have otherwise. These novel insights then become lessons to apply to their own institution upon returning from the Program. Decision makers from the case studies often join participants in the classroom—either on site or via video link—to engage in live dialogue and dive deeper into key dilemmas.