Stanford LEAD preview review

stanford lead preview


Stanford LEAD preview review.

In November 2016 I attended a great lecture on Entrepreneurship in Stanford School of Engineering. It was taught by Facebook’s VP of product design Julie Zhuo. Just weeks ago, I had the opportunity to participate in Stanford’s LEAD preview. It’s a preview of an executive program offered by Stanford Graduate School of Business. I have always highly regarded Stanford as the best place to be an entrepreneur.

So, not only did I enjoy the preview, I also benefit from it, even it was just for 10 days. The purpose of this preview was so that participants could have a feel of how it’s actually delivered, network with global well experienced participants and alumni, and interact with world-class professor. So how was my experience? Let’s get started.


Stanford has a long-standing history with plenty of notable alumni from presidents of different countries, to founders of biggest influencers companies in the world such as Google, Yahoo, Hewlett-Packard, among others. LEAD stands for learn, engage, accelerate and disrupt. It’s an executive program designed for professionals and leaders with more experience in their career. The cost of LEAD is USD 16000. It has 3 required and 5 optional courses, to be completed in 1-2 years. It has 2 cohorts every year.


There were quite a number of Stanford’s staffs and alumni involved in the preview. Professor Jennifer Aaker, Associate director Marineh Lalikian, Coach Martha Weeks, Parth Saxena who was an alumni, as well as other staffs and alumni present to help participants in getting an understanding of what the program was about. They were all very helpful and professional. Last but not least, there were participants from all over the world taking part in the LEAD preview.

Professor Aaker authored a book titled “the Dragon Fly Effect”. It’s about how to use social media to influence communities. The book has a work book to work on your story telling.


How was it delivered? In 10 days, we had a kick off session, a coaching session with Martha Weeks, 2 assignments and a live session with Jennifer Aaker. Participants interacted with each other through discussions and the assignments. The platform, some people call it the learning management system while I prefer online classroom, was NovoEd. As for the program used for live sessions, it was bluejeans. The sessions were recorded for those who were unable to attend. These systems worked perfectly and were very easy to use.

stanford lead preview
Inside the online classroom

My thoughts.

I loved how diverse the participants were, not only geographically but also in career and industry background. Jennifer Aaker was a great professor who was knowledgeable and approachable at the same time. The live sessions schedule was not always perfect for me but fortunately everything was recorded. The reputation of the school, program and the people involved are definitely unquestionable, leaving very little room to doubt, if any.

It was serious, yet fun; formal yet casual. This preview was like a mock version of the real one, yet different. Likewise, it’s a reflection, but not exactly showing how the real program will be. I would still like to see a syllabus or a full scheduling of at least one module. This will really help in terms of knowing what to expect of the workload, hence, time and commitment required, as well as what kind of learning methods will be involved.

Should you do it?

All in all, I definitely recommend the program in a heartbeat, for those who need it. Whether you need it is another story. It would depend on your career priorities and choices. From the provider side, it offers all the great things an online student should be happy with. However, success is not only determined by the perfection of what is being offered, but also whether you are ready for it. I created a free guide to online learning, to help you decide.

I will walk you through what you need to know before starting. You can download this to receive the free e-book guide to guide you make the decision. What is online learning? Are you ready to study online? It’s not the same decision for everyone. Make sure you do it right, prevent disappointments; whether because you do it or you don’t do it.

It surely gains its popularity that the class size gets bigger. It now reached 200 students per cohort. As for myself, I decided not to join this cohort as yet. Possibly in the future.

Story telling.

The module on preview was about storytelling. Who are the best storytellers? How can your story makes a difference? I will give you an introduction on story telling on the next post.

In the mean time, live with a purpose, get the right education for it, to serve and influence others with your stories.

You have read: Stanford LEAD preview review.

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