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May 2015

Macedonia2025 and the LEADER Project: Bringing world-class education to Macedonian professionals

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“Leading education and development” is the motto of the business education program named the LEADER Project that kicked-off on May 4 in Skopje and will continue in the following ten days. This is the eighth edition of the program whose goal is to transfer business and analytical skills to experienced and young entrepreneurs from Macedonia. There has been great interest for the LEADER Project. Macedonia2025 received more than a hundred applications of which we selected forty of the best-qualified candidates who had demonstrated a clear perspective regarding their business idea and professional goals.

The LEADER Project is a unique program that originates from the Richard Ivey School of Business, which is part of University of Western Ontario- one of the top ranked business schools in North America. Some of the best MBA graduates volunteer as LEADER instructors in a limited number of sites around the world. Their goal is to transfer specific insights and professional experience to the participants who either have their own.

Ms. Markovic added: “With each consecutive year the interest in the program rises, and the program itself has really become even better than the previous years. We received many positive impressions from previous LEADER Project participants, who say they were able to improve their business by implementing the analytical skills which they had learned during the course. Macedonia2025 sought to give the program a regional character by providing a number of seats for participants from the region. This resulted in a number of applications from candidates from the business sector in Serbia. So, we are continuing our tradition of transferring knowledge and skills, which is directed at improving the competitiveness of the domestic economy. The lectures will be further expanded by a number of business leaders, such as Mike Zafirovski, who is going to speak at the LEADER Project.”

In the course of the next ten days the instructors at the LEADER Project will help the participants learn how to come to a deeper understanding of the course material and how to optimally implement the know-how in their business plan and at the workplace. In the spirit of the program’s name, the focus is placed on the building of leadership skills and confidence in taking responsibility and initiative. At the end of the program each of the participants is expected to give a five-minute presentation of his or her business plan and to convince the instructors of its feasibility and possible success. The participants who fulfill the criteria for engaged and dedicated participation in the program are going to receive an internationally-recognized certificate from the LEADER Project and will become part of the network of alumni in a number of countries around the world. Steve Sharpe, President and CEO of Euromax Resources, who is patron of this educational initiative, spoke at the opening of the LEADER Project in Skopje and encouraged the participants to “embrace the opportunity that you are given by world education leaders, have an open mind and soak it all in.”

Macedonia2025 wants to thank MAMAS’s Traditional Homemade Recipes, VItalia Health Food, Nescafe, Specijal Bakery, Sunday-Kolid, Ladna and the Skopje Brewery who have helped us provide utmost hospitality to the Canadian instructors, as well to the LEADER Project participants.

business or are working on starting one. The course has been designed according to the MBA program at the Richard Ivey School of Business and involves case studies, business plan feasibility, streamlining strategy, working in groups, individual presentations of the participant’s business plans are much more.

LEADER Project alumni from Macedonia have cited their experience with the program as incredibly positive. After completing the course, some participants had managed to locate an area in which to improve their company’s performance. Other participants had improved their personal input in the workplace by implementing the business and analytical skills that were taught by the instructors. Biljana Markovic, Director of the Macedonia2025 office in Skopje stated: “In this edition of the LEADER Project we are continuing the tradition of dedicated knowledge-transfer and the purpose is to help improve the competitiveness of the domestic economy, which is one of our development mandates.”