MBAE7502 Executive Strategy: Growth and Innovation - 2022

Subject Code
Study Level
Commencing Term
Term 2
Total Units of Credit (UOC)
Delivery Mode

1. Course Details

Summary of Course

The capstone year of the MBA (Executive) focuses on themes of growth, innovation, disruption and transformation. As part of the capstone year, this course will help you develop strategic thinking and analysis skills that you will apply in formulating effective growth and innovation strategies for your organisation. You will do this by applying tools and frameworks from the field of strategic management and using aspects of human-centred design, including empathy, ideation and prototyping to identify and evaluate value-creating growth and innovation options.

Primary paths for organisational growth and innovation include expansion into new products/services, and expansion into new markets (i.e. geographic locations and customer segments). For each of these two expansion paths there are several alternative vehicles for implementation, including organic growth, mergers and acquisitions, strategic partnerships or alliances. Many organisations employ all of these vehicles in their growth and innovation strategies. In the course, we will discuss each of these paths and vehicles for expanding the scope of organisations and identify and evaluate growth and innovation options in a variety of sectors and contexts. We will also apply a resource and capability perspective as the platform for identifying growth and innovation options ranging from close adjacencies, further adjacencies, and (currently) unrelated businesses.

However, identifying attractive growth and innovation options does not automatically translate into success. Managers also need to be able to successfully implement their growth strategy. An integrated growth strategy therefore includes a plan for obtaining the capabilities needed to succeed in each growth and innovation option, and the timing and phasing of each step of expanding the organisation. An integrated growth strategy also requires identifying and analysing the risks that may prevent the capture of expected economic benefits. We will discuss how to limit risk by identifying growth and innovation options that leverage the existing strengths of the organisation, evaluating whether an organisation is the natural or best owner of a given business, and avoiding paying too much for an acquisition.

Teaching Times and Locations

Please note that teaching times and locations are subject to change. Students are strongly advised to refer to the Class Timetable website for the most up-to-date teaching times and locations.

This course is scheduled to run in Residential mode. At the time of publishing this Course Outline, UNSW is reactivating campus, but there is a chance that there could be subsequent COVID-19 restrictions.

View course timetable

Course Policies & Support

Course Aims and Relationship to Other Courses

As you study this course, you will also study the MBAE7501 Executive Accelerator course, which you will cover across three terms (2 units of credit in each). One day of the five-day residential will focus on Executive Accelerator.

Additional Course Details

3. Staff Contact Details

Position Name Email Location Phone Consultation Times
Facilitator in ChargeShayne Gary

Facilitator in Charge

Each course has a Facilitator in Charge who is responsible for the academic leadership and overall academic integrity of the course. The Facilitator in Charge selects content and designs assessment tasks, and takes responsibility for specific academic and administrative issues related to the course. Facilitators in Charge oversee Facilitators and ensure that the ongoing standard of facilitation in the course is consistent with the quality requirements of the program.


The role of your Facilitator is to support and enhance the learning process by encouraging interaction among participants, providing direction in understanding the course content, assessing participant progress through the course and providing feedback on work submitted. Facilitators comprise academics and industry practitioners with relevant backgrounds.

4. Learning and Teaching Activities

Approach to Learning and Teaching in the Course

Learning Activities and Teaching Strategies

Course Structure

The course involves three stages: (i) pre-residential, (ii) residential, and (iii) post-residential. The pre-residential stage comprises the first three weeks of the course and involves reading the Unit materials. These course materials explain the concepts, theories and tools utilised in formulating growth strategies for organisations. You will practise applying the concepts and tools by answering reflection questions throughout each Unit. Your knowledge of the course materials will be assessed through three quizzes during each of the first three weeks of the course.

The residential stage encompasses four days (following the day focusing on the Executive Accelerator course) during Week 4 of the course. You will apply the concepts and tools covered in the first three weeks throughout the four days. Think of the residential as an opportunity to immerse yourself in deliberate practice mode to significantly increase your skills in applying the course concepts and tools. You will be working in teams throughout much of the residential and will also benefit from learning from each other. We will use written case studies as well as a live case study of an organisation facing growth challenges. You will apply course concepts and tools throughout the four days to develop a prototype growth strategy for the live case study organisation. Following the residential, your team will refine and further develop your growth strategy recommendations for the live case.

The post-residential stage comprises Weeks 5 to 10 of the course. In this stage, you will continue to enhance your learning about the course concepts and tools through working in teams and learning from each other, an online cohort meeting with the facilitator in Week 8, and peer feedback from the cohort. Your ability to apply the course concepts and tools will be assessed through: (i) a written assessment for your team's recommended growth and innovation strategy of the live case study organisation, and (ii) a written assessment of your recommended growth and innovation strategy for your own organisation. Also, you will be assessed throughout the course on your participation. To help structure your growth and innovation strategy for your own organisation, you will write a one-page summary for the individual written assessment and receive feedback from your cohort peers on your summary.

6. Course Resources

Learning resources

You have the following resources to help you learn:

  1. The course materials. You will do much of your learning in the weeks before and after the residential, and by completing the Units and learning activities as they arise.

  2. Your classes during the residential with your Facilitator, who will guide your learning by conducting class discussion, answering questions, providing insights from their practical experience and understanding of theory, providing you with feedback on your assessments, and directing discussions and debates that will occur between you and your co-participants in the classroom.

  3. Your co-participants. Your colleagues in the online classes in Moodle and at the residential are an invaluable potential source of learning for you. Their willingness to debate and discuss the course materials represent a great learning opportunity. They can bring valuable insights to the learning experience.

Other resources


BusinessThink is UNSW's free, online business publication. It is a platform for business research, analysis and opinion. If you would like to subscribe to BusinessThink, and receive the free monthly e-newsletter with the latest in research, opinion and business then go to

7. Course Evaluation & Development

Continual Course Improvement

AGSM courses are reviewed each time they run, with updated course outlines and assessment tasks developed. 

Additionally, the AGSM surveys students each time a course is offered. The data collected provides anonymous feedback from students on the quality of course content and materials, class facilitation, student support services and the program in general. This student feedback is considered during all course revisions.

Student Response

The course ran for the first time in Term 1 2022 and the MyExperience feedback is not yet available. AGSM staff and facilitators did have conversations with the students who completed the course in Term 1, so the 'Response to Student Feedback' below is based on this anecdotal feedback.

Response to Student Feedback

Anecdotal feedback from students enrolled in Term 1 was very positive about the course facilitators and materials. A few students indicated they were surprised about the workload during the term, but most students felt the workload was what they expected and in line with the 6 units of credit for the Growth and Innovation course plus 2 units of credit for the Executive Accelerator course. The workload for the final year can be challenging if not managed effectively, so try to prepare in advance and be well organised, set your workload expectations appropriately, and plan to manage your time carefully. 

8. Course Schedule

Week Activity Topic Detail/Engagement Assessment Task
Week 1 Application and Reflection questions, Quiz 1aUnits 1-3: Readings, videos, podcasts

Communication in your class Moodle site with other members of your cohort 

Study Units 1 to 3

Assessment 1a: Quiz on Units 1-3 (5%) Completion by end of week*

* Quiz 1a MUST be completed by 3pm one day prior to the commencement of the residential. The quiz will not be available after this time. However, we suggest that you complete the quizzes each week and do not leave them to the last minute.

Assessment 1: Quizzes : Quizzes
Week 2 Application and Reflection questions, Quiz 1bUnits 4-6: Readings, videos, podcasts

Study Units 4 to 6

Assessment 1b: Quiz on Units 4-6 (5%) Completion by end of week*

*Quiz 1b MUST be completed by 3pm one day prior to the commencement of the residential. The quiz will not be available after this time. Complete the quizzes each week and do not leave them to the last minute.

Assessment 1: Quizzes : Quizzes
Week 3 Application and Reflection questions, Quiz 1cUnits 7-9: Readings, videos, podcasts

Study Units 7 to 9

Assessment 1c: Quiz on Units 7-9 (5%) Completion by Friday at 3pm*

*Quiz 1c MUST be completed by 3pm one day prior to the commencement of the residential. The quiz will not be available after this time. Complete the quizzes each week and do not leave them to the last minute.

Assessment 1: Quizzes : Quizzes
Week 4 Residential; Assessment 4Live case, cohort peers

Attend the residential, participate in all residential activities and make substantive contributions to class discussions

Assessment 4 Part A: Quality of residential participation (10%)


Assessment 4 : Course Participation : Part A: Quality of participation during the residential
Week 5 Teamwork on live case growth & innovation strategy
Week 6 Teamwork on live case growth & innovation strategy
Week 7 Assessment 2Unit 10

Assessment 2: Live case growth & innovation strategy written report (30%) due on Monday by 3pm Sydney time 

Study Unit 10

Assessment 2: Live Case Growth & Innovation Strategy Paper : Live case growth and innovation strategy paper
Week 8 1-page summary; Cohort online meetingPeer feedback from teammates

Share one-page summary of your Individual Growth & Innovation (G&I) Strategy with teammates and provide feedback on your team members' one-page summaries BEFORE the cohort online meeting with the course facilitator. In the cohort online meeting, we will discuss Unit 10 and answer questions about Assessment 3.

Week 9 Work on Individual Growth & Innovation StrategyPeer assessment of team members

Assessment 4 Part B: Team contribution peer assessment (10%) due on Friday by 3pm Sydney time

Assessment 4 : Course Participation : Part B: Team participation during course activities
Week 10 Work on Individual Growth & Innovation Strategy

Assessment 3: Individual growth & innovation strategy paper (35%) due on Friday by 3pm Sydney time

Assessment 3: Individual Growth & Innovation Strategy Paper : Individual growth & innovation strategy paper

9. Policies and Support

Information about UNSW Business School protocols, University policies, student responsibilities and education quality and support.

Program Learning Outcomes

The Business School places knowledge and capabilities at the core of its curriculum via seven Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs). These PLOs are systematically embedded and developed across the duration of all coursework programs in the Business School.

PLOs embody the knowledge, skills and capabilities that are taught, practised and assessed within each Business School program. They articulate what you should know and be able to do upon successful completion of your degree.

Upon graduation, you should have a high level of specialised business knowledge and capacity for responsible business thinking, underpinned by ethical professional practice. You should be able to harness, manage and communicate business information effectively and work collaboratively with others. You should be an experienced problem-solver and critical thinker, with a global perspective, cultural competence and the potential for innovative leadership.

All UNSW programs and courses are designed to assess the attainment of program and/or course level learning outcomes, as required by the UNSW Assessment Design Procedure. It is important that you become familiar with the Business School PLOs, as they constitute the framework which informs and shapes the components and assessments of the courses within your program of study.

PLO 1: Business knowledge

Students will make informed and effective selection and application of knowledge in a discipline or profession, in the contexts of local and global business.

PLO 2: Problem solving

Students will define and address business problems, and propose effective evidence-based solutions, through the application of rigorous analysis and critical thinking.

PLO 3: Business communication

Students will harness, manage and communicate business information effectively using multiple forms of communication across different channels.

PLO 4: Teamwork

Students will interact and collaborate effectively with others to achieve a common business purpose or fulfil a common business project, and reflect critically on the process and the outcomes.

PLO 5: Responsible business practice

Students will develop and be committed to responsible business thinking and approaches, which are underpinned by ethical professional practice and sustainability considerations.

PLO 6: Global and cultural competence

Students will be aware of business systems in the wider world and actively committed to recognise and respect the cultural norms, beliefs and values of others, and will apply this knowledge to interact, communicate and work effectively in diverse environments.

PLO 7: Leadership development

Students will develop the capacity to take initiative, encourage forward thinking and bring about innovation, while effectively influencing others to achieve desired results.

These PLOs relate to undergraduate and postgraduate coursework programs.  Separate PLOs for honours and postgraduate research programs are included under 'Related Documents'.

Business School course outlines provide detailed information for students on how the course learning outcomes, learning activities, and assessment/s contribute to the development of Program Learning Outcomes.



UNSW Graduate Capabilities

The Business School PLOs also incorporate UNSW graduate capabilities, a set of generic abilities and skills that all students are expected to achieve by graduation. These capabilities articulate the University’s institutional values, as well as future employer expectations.

UNSW Graduate CapabilitiesBusiness School PLOs
Scholars capable of independent and collaborative enquiry, rigorous in their analysis, critique and reflection, and able to innovate by applying their knowledge and skills to the solution of novel as well as routine problems.
  • PLO 1: Business knowledge
  • PLO 2: Problem solving
  • PLO 3: Business communication
  • PLO 4: Teamwork
  • PLO 7: Leadership development

Entrepreneurial leaders capable of initiating and embracing innovation and change, as well as engaging and enabling others to contribute to change
  • PLO 1: Business knowledge
  • PLO 2: Problem solving
  • PLO 3: Business communication
  • PLO 4: Teamwork
  • PLO 6: Global and cultural competence
  • PLO 7: Leadership development

Professionals capable of ethical, self-directed practice and independent lifelong learning
  • PLO 1: Business knowledge
  • PLO 2: Problem solving
  • PLO 3: Business communication
  • PLO 5: Responsible business practice

Global citizens who are culturally adept and capable of respecting diversity and acting in a socially just and responsible way.
  • PLO 1: Business knowledge
  • PLO 2: Problem solving
  • PLO 3: Business communication
  • PLO 4: Teamwork
  • PLO 5: Responsible business practice
  • PLO 6: Global and cultural competence

While our programs are designed to provide coverage of all PLOs and graduate capabilities, they also provide you with a great deal of choice and flexibility.  The Business School strongly advises you to choose a range of courses that assist your development against the seven PLOs and four graduate capabilities, and to keep a record of your achievements as part of your portfolio. You can use a portfolio as evidence in employment applications as well as a reference for work or further study. For support with selecting your courses contact the UNSW Business School Student Centre.

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

Academic Integrity is honest and responsible scholarship. This form of ethical scholarship is highly valued at UNSW. Terms like Academic Integrity, misconduct, referencing, conventions, plagiarism, academic practices, citations and evidence based learning are all considered basic concepts that successful university students understand. Learning how to communicate original ideas, refer sources, work independently, and report results accurately and honestly are skills that you will be able to carry beyond your studies.

The definition of academic misconduct is broad. It covers practices such as cheating, copying and using another person’s work without appropriate acknowledgement. Incidents of academic misconduct may have serious consequences for students.


UNSW regards plagiarism as a form of academic misconduct. UNSW has very strict rules regarding plagiarism. Plagiarism at UNSW is using the words or ideas of others and passing them off as your own. All Schools in the Business School have a Student Ethics Officer who will investigate incidents of plagiarism and may result in a student’s name being placed on the Plagiarism and Student Misconduct Registers.

Below are examples of plagiarism including self-plagiarism:

Copying: Using the same or very similar words to the original text or idea without acknowledging the source or using quotation marks. This includes copying materials, ideas or concepts from a book, article, report or other written document, presentation, composition, artwork, design, drawing, circuitry, computer program or software, website, internet, other electronic resource, or another person's assignment, without appropriate acknowledgement of authorship.

Inappropriate Paraphrasing: Changing a few words and phrases while mostly retaining the original structure and/or progression of ideas of the original, and information without acknowledgement. This also applies in presentations where someone paraphrases another’s ideas or words without credit and to piecing together quotes and paraphrases into a new whole, without appropriate referencing.

Collusion: Presenting work as independent work when it has been produced in whole or part in collusion with other people. Collusion includes:

  • Students providing their work to another student before the due date, or for the purpose of them plagiarising at any time
  • Paying another person to perform an academic task and passing it off as your own
  • Stealing or acquiring another person’s academic work and copying it
  • Offering to complete another person’s work or seeking payment for completing academic work

Collusion should not be confused with academic collaboration (i.e., shared contribution towards a group task).

Inappropriate Citation: Citing sources which have not been read, without acknowledging the 'secondary' source from which knowledge of them has been obtained.

Self-Plagiarism: ‘Self-plagiarism’ occurs where an author republishes their own previously written work and presents it as new findings without referencing the earlier work, either in its entirety or partially. Self-plagiarism is also referred to as 'recycling', 'duplication', or 'multiple submissions of research findings' without disclosure. In the student context, self-plagiarism includes re-using parts of, or all of, a body of work that has already been submitted for assessment without proper citation.

To see if you understand plagiarism, do this short quiz:


The University also regards cheating as a form of academic misconduct. Cheating is knowingly submitting the work of others as their own and includes contract cheating (work produced by an external agent or third party that is submitted under the pretences of being a student’s original piece of work). Cheating is not acceptable at UNSW.

If you need to revise or clarify any terms associated with academic integrity you should explore the 'Working with Academic Integrity' self-paced lessons available at:

For UNSW policies, penalties, and information to help you avoid plagiarism see: as well as the guidelines in the online ELISE tutorials for all new UNSW students: For information on student conduct see:

For information on how to acknowledge your sources and reference correctly, see: If you are unsure what referencing style to use in this course, you should ask the lecturer in charge.

Student Responsibilities and Conduct

​Students are expected to be familiar with and adhere to university policies in relation to class attendance and general conduct and behaviour, including maintaining a safe, respectful environment; and to understand their obligations in relation to workload, assessment and keeping informed.

Information and policies on these topics can be found on the 'Managing your Program' website.


It is expected that you will spend at least ten to twelve hours per week studying for a course except for Summer Term courses which have a minimum weekly workload of twenty to twenty four hours. This time should be made up of reading, research, working on exercises and problems, online activities and attending classes. In periods where you need to complete assignments or prepare for examinations, the workload may be greater. Over-commitment has been a cause of failure for many students. You should take the required workload into account when planning how to balance study with employment and other activities.

We strongly encourage you to connect with your Moodle course websites in the first week of semester. Local and international research indicates that students who engage early and often with their course website are more likely to pass their course.

View more information on expected workload


Your regular and punctual attendance at lectures and seminars or in online learning activities is expected in this course. The Business School reserves the right to refuse final assessment to those students who attend less than 80% of scheduled classes where attendance and participation is required as part of the learning process (e.g., tutorials, flipped classroom sessions, seminars, labs, etc.).

View more information on attendance

General Conduct and Behaviour

You are expected to conduct yourself with consideration and respect for the needs of your fellow students and teaching staff. Conduct which unduly disrupts or interferes with a class, such as ringing or talking on mobile phones, is not acceptable and students may be asked to leave the class.

View more information on student conduct

Health and Safety

UNSW Policy requires each person to work safely and responsibly, in order to avoid personal injury and to protect the safety of others.

View more information on Health and Safety

Keeping Informed

You should take note of all announcements made in lectures, tutorials or on the course web site. From time to time, the University will send important announcements to your university e-mail address without providing you with a paper copy. You will be deemed to have received this information. It is also your responsibility to keep the University informed of all changes to your contact details.

Student Support and Resources

​The University and the Business School provide a wide range of support services and resources for students, including:

Business School EQS Consultation Program
The Consultation Program offers academic writing, literacy and numeracy consultations, study skills, exam preparation for Business students. Services include workshops, online resources, individual and group consultations. 
Level 1, Room 1035, Quadrangle Building.
02 9385 4508

Communication Resources
The Business School Communication and Academic Support programs provide online modules, communication workshops and additional online resources to assist you in developing your academic writing.

Business School Student Centre
The Business School Student Centre provides advice and direction on all aspects of admission, enrolment and graduation.
Level 1, Room 1028 in the Quadrangle Building
02 9385 3189

UNSW Learning & Careers Hub
The UNSW Learning & Careers Hub provides academic skills and careers support services—including workshops, individual consultations and a range of online resources—for all UNSW students. See their website for details.
Lower Ground Floor, North Wing Chancellery Building.
02 9385 2060

Student Support Advisors
Student Support Advisors work with all students to promote the development of skills needed to succeed at university, whilst also providing personal support throughout the process.
John Goodsell Building, Ground Floor.
02 9385 4734

International Student Support
The International Student Experience Unit (ISEU) is the first point of contact for international students. ISEU staff are always here to help with personalised advice and information about all aspects of university life and life in Australia.
Advisors can support you with your student visa, health and wellbeing, making friends, accommodation and academic performance.
02 9385 4734

Equitable Learning Services
Equitable Learning Services (formerly Disability Support Services) is a free and confidential service that provides practical support to ensure that your health condition doesn't adversely affect your studies. Register with the service to receive educational adjustments.
Ground Floor, John Goodsell Building.
02 9385 4734

UNSW Counselling and Psychological Services
Provides support and services if you need help with your personal life, getting your academic life back on track or just want to know how to stay safe, including free, confidential counselling.
Level 2, East Wing, Quadrangle Building.
02 9385 5418

Library services and facilities for students
The UNSW Library offers a range of collections, services and facilities both on-campus and online.
Main Library, F21.
02 9385 2650

Moodle eLearning Support
Moodle is the University’s learning management system. You should ensure that you log into Moodle regularly.
02 9385 3331

UNSW IT provides support and services for students such as password access, email services, wireless services and technical support.
UNSW Library Annexe (Ground floor).
02 9385 1333