AIM President, Dr. Steve Dekrey, guides you on the path to leadership
SO YOU’RE a young professional passing down Ayala Avenue, pleased with another hard day’s work, gazing at the winking Christmas lights and hopeful that, sometime in the future, you will realize your dream to be among the respected executives of the Philippines’ unmatched business center. But where can you find someone to teach you how to be a leader?
You cannot, admits Dr. Steve DeKrey, new president of the Asian Institute of Management (AIM). Leadership is “learned pretty much on the job,” he says. “You can provide frameworks and thinking points, decision models and all that, but the actual leadership is very personal when it is applied. It’s in the field.
“I started out my work in Asia 16 years ago, trying to identify the Asian leader,” he continues. “I’ve given that up. It doesn’t exist... I realized that the best Asian leaders are global leaders. We live in a world that has no boundaries, a world where a product labeled Made in China may have parts from Italy, India, Vietnam, or Philippines, but is just assembled in China. A world where a US customer calls the service hotline, but is connected to a call center in Makati. We need global leaders.”
MADE BY LEADERS, MAKING LEADERS
Last August, Dr. DeKrey joined AIM, which is an institution established by leaders. Founded in 1968 with the Harvard Business School, Asian academicians, and prominent business leaders such as Jaime Zobel de Ayala and Eugenio Lopez, Sr. AIM designs its masters and executive programs to develop practicing managers in Asia’s emerging markets. With its location in Makati, AIM is easily in touch with the Philippines’ business and financial community. With 39,900 alumni, it has clientele and alumni worldwide, and meets the global accreditation standards of the US-based Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).
Being a global leader entails working in an environment of multiple cultures, situations, and challenges. “In life in general, it is a mistake if we don’t reflect on and internalize the situations that we face,” explains Dr. DeKrey. “If we fail to gain from these experiences and develop through them, then we let valuable opportunities go to waste. Bring that into sharper focus, and the same holds true for the leadership experience… Leaders are good listeners. They are responsive; they are team players. Leadership now is not the single dominant entity, command-and- control. That is long gone. Leadership now is really team management. It is inspiring others.”
Amher Ables (EMBA 2009) of Hewlett- Packard credits his AIM experience for transforming him into a leader. “Taking my MBA in AIM was a very powerful life experience,” he shared. “I was able to enhance my skills of leadership, teamwork, foresight, insight, communication, and ethics… AIM has changed me as a person. AIM has given me the competency, flexibility, and confidence to steer my career to the best the industry could offer.”
BECOMING A LEADER MADE EASY
However, not everyone has the financial capacity to invest in graduate education. Thus, AIM has partnered with BPI on a student loan facility that offers full tuition coverage at a fixed interest. If you’re a Filipino with leadership potential and you have been accepted into an AIM degree program, then you may avail of the loan. For the same monthly payments as a car, you can get an AIM degree, which means better job opportunities, higher value, and your dream leadership role within reach.