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ACC Australia and the Monash Global Executive MBA program are delighted to announce a new sponsorship for Association of Corporate Counsel members for the Monash University Global Executive MBA program.

For the 2022 Global Executive MBA commencing September, Monash will provide $100,000 in sponsorship funding for ACC members; this will be five sponsorships of up to $20,000 for selected candidates.

This 15-month, intensive, part-time program, is designed for senior professionals in all fields, with a minimum of 10 years' experience, seeking to advance from specialist and technical functions into commercial, general management and executive-level positions.

Don’t miss out! Round 3 applications are open now

Read about below about the benefits of the GEMBA from Patrick Butler, Professor and Director of the Global Executive MBA program at Monash Business School, current ACC Australia member and Monash GEMBA alumna Michelle Anglin, General Counsel (ANZ) of Reece Group, and Dr Richard Dammery, Professor of Practice at Monash Business School and former ACC Australia member and Chief Legal Officer.

“Career progression for experienced lawyers in business is not fundamentally different from professionals in finance, engineering or science”, says Patrick Butler, Professor and Director of the Global Executive MBA program at Monash Business School. “At a point in their careers, they realise that being an excellent performer in their functional or technical field does not guarantee entry to executive-level opportunities in business or in professional practice.”


At the top of organisations, the leadership and strategic requirements of the C-suite are less about demonstrating specialist skills and more about mature and considered contributions to complex and consequential issues, or knowing how to grow a business in an ever-changing and often disruptive environment.


In general business terms, managers run product lines, business units and functional areas. Executives may have such responsibilities as well, but they must also be concerned with – and be able to contribute to - long-term, strategic and transformational questions. Their decisions are more directional and more consequential. And, frankly, more risky. And not every high-performing manager makes it to the next level.


For lawyers in professional practice or in corporate counsel roles, consideration of an MBA is common. However, experienced and well-trained professionals do not necessarily benefit from an MBA qualification. "For professionals with a minimum of ten years’ experience, an executive-level MBA is an entirely different category for us", Butler says “Rather than learning about the fundamentals of business, which is appropriate for younger managers, the Monash GEMBA program is specifically designed for more mature professionals who can move through an executive-level curriculum quickly with their peers in other roles and sectors”


“We deliberately recruit for diversity. We have architects, physicians, policy experts, marketers, engineers and PhD-qualified scientists in our class; precisely what mature managers need to test and challenge their often deeply-held views. Assumptions about success in business are constantly contested in volatile and ambiguous environments; leadership is now a matter of constantly recalibrating for innovation and transformation”. 


Michelle Anglin, General Counsel (ANZ) of Reece Group – the ASX100 $10.7bn building materials company - and member of ACC - is an alumna of the Monash GEMBA program. Having held commercial and in-house counsel roles in global transportation and healthcare sectors, she explains how the GEMBA supported her transition into senior management roles: “The transition from legal advice-giver to trusted business advisor was a critical conversion for me”, she says. “I gained valuable insight from my GEMBA peers in other executive roles, and from my experience on the Monash program working directly on strategy projects in manufacturing, biotechnology and digital transformation. The design of the program accelerated and broadened my learning across critical non-legal areas.  This strengthened the quality of my working relationships with senior business executives and the value I am able to add to the business in my role as General Counsel”.


In a global business world, international experience and qualifications are increasingly relevant. Ideas, business models and talent cross boundaries in a highly connected domain. The Monash Global Executive MBA program has three global partner schools at which the participants spend one week each. The leading schools in Europe, Asia and North America are INSEAD (Fontainebleau, France), China-Europe International Business School (Shanghai, China) and New York University Stern School of Business (NYC, USA). 

Richard Dammery, a professional non-executive director, Professor of Practice at Monash Business School and former Chief Legal Officer teaches Corporate Governance in the program. He says: “Good governance is fundamental to commercial performance in business. In fact, good governance, a strong culture and high-performance are all highly correlated. Have you ever seen a truly high-performance organisation with poor governance? It’s not a coincidence! General counsel know this intuitively. The opportunity is for them to be part of the strategic value-creation process, while attending to the many stakeholder voices that businesses must respond to. The credibility of lawyers who can engage with authority on commercial, strategic and multi-stakeholder matters, at both the executive and board levels, is a greatly enhanced by a high-quality MBA. It helps them think like the business, speak in language their clients understand, and add value at the top table. What is distinctive about the Monash program is the lived experience of the cohort, the international dimension, its highly-applied project-based learning model and its focus on personal and professional development in the suite of leadership subjects”.

Michelle Anglin again: “Our leadership team here is focusing on the agility required of players in this rapidly-advancing digital environment. Legal expertise can make an enormous contribution to advancements in this field, not only because questions of privacy and cybersecurity are important risk areas, but because it can help operationalise complex platforms for consumer and business marketplaces”.


Observing executive career trajectories from his perspective as Executive MBA director, Patrick Butler notes “We are seeing GCs continue to evolve beyond narrow domain expertise. They will be expected to model executive behaviours and contributions in other functions. In professional practice, a lawyer who can relate to corporate clients’ broad and strategic concerns will have enhanced credibility and value. In large organisations, a GC who can engage with multiple functions and committees like investment, supply chain, HR, business development or innovation will earn the trust and respect of senior officers. That extra-legal engagement and contribution is what opens doors to further opportunity”.

For further information, please contact