College of Business > About > Centers & Institutes > Center For Strategy Execution and Valuation > Education Programs

Education Programs

The Center For Strategy, Execution and Valuation can design and deliver executive education and management development programs focused on strategic competency creation for today's business leaders. These offerings include:

  • Executive Briefing on Return Driven Strategy
  • Strategic Risk Management
  • Executing Strategic Initiative
  • Driven Leadership and Coaching Skills
  • Strategic Leadership Skills

The center's team work collaboratively with management teams to co-create valuable executive education offerings that will meet the specific needs of your team. Our executive education focuses on applying the content of the programs to opportunities and challenges facing a company or business unit.

The center has successfully developed and presented execution education courses in strategy and leadership programs for corporate universities and for professional organizations in North America and Europe.

For more information, contact us at

DePaul's Strategy, Execution and Valuation (SEV) concentration is designed for MBA candidates destined for higher levels of corporate management, management consulting, investment banking, equity research, money management and entrepreneurs. This quintessential and innovative MBA concentration makes the connection between business strategy, execution and value creation. It prepares Kellstadt students to make a significant impact on the future of their organizations and in their careers. The concentration immerses MBA candidates in the knowledge and skills that support business strategy, the seamless connection necessary between strategy and execution, including strategic risk management and advanced applications for bridging strategic analysis to forecasts and valuation. The program applies the Return Driven Strategy framework which describes the pattern of strategic activities of high-performance companies to enable MBA candidates to evaluate business strategy and strategic initiatives, and to develop the valuable skill of strategic thinking. The innovative seminar courses in the program include presentations by executives and thought leaders to provide insight on the leading practices in strategy, execution and strategic valuation.

The Center for Strategy, Execution and Valuation serves as a platform to maximize the value of DePaul's MBA program to all of its constituents — students, faculty, alumni and the business community. Through the center, DePaul embarks on a mission to create the world's most comprehensive and insightful series of offerings in business strategy development, business execution systems, corporate performance measurement and strategic valuation. Augmenting the SEV's mission is the Strategy, Execution and Valuation Alumni Association (SEVAA), which continues to connect alumni with the business community.

Here is a video discussion about the SEV program with Dr. Mark L. Frigo and Russel Gottesman, an SEV alum and clinical instructor in the SEV courses.

Russel Gottesman
Russel Gottesman

"I learned more relevant information about the 'real' business world from my SEV concentration than I learned from my other MBA courses. The unique aspect of Return Driven Strategy is that it can be applied to individuals, to small businesses and to large corporations. RDS focuses on the big picture, and then breaks it down so that one can concentrate on an area of need. The Frigo 'experience' confirmed that Kellstadt was the right choice for my MBA. Keep innovating your offering!!!"
—Steven Manning, Trader

"The SEV program provided me with a strong framework that allowed me to apply the tenets of the Return Driven Strategy to both companies and my own personal career path. I was able to use the tenets to evaluate my decision to pursue a PhD in marketing, in order to make sure that it matches my long-term career goals. I plan on using the RDS framework when teaching and conducting research, as it allows me to view companies and industries in a more holistic manner."
Alex Milovic PhD Candidate, UW-Milwaukee

"I found GSB 611 – Return Driven Strategy to be one of the best courses I've taken at DePaul. I took the course as an elective. I've been telling everyone at work about this course, including the book Driven. I really enjoyed working with others in a short time frame to construct the paper and presentation. I've been able to dissect a company to learn more about its framework and potential improvements. Also, Dr. Mark Frigo was an excellent professor. He really got the class motivated and involved with the Return Driven Strategy framework."
Rob Pasquesi, Grant Thornton LLP

"The MBA experience at DePaul and specifically the SEV coursework has provided a set of experiences, tools and a strategic framework that can be applied to everyday business situations."
Geoffrey Martin, Regional Director, GE Healthcare

"When I enrolled for GSB621, I was thinking of it as an elective. The course generated so much interest that now I am planning to make it my concentration [in addition to finance]."
Rajesh Gopinathapai, Vice President, ABNAMRO BUNA-IT

"For me the Return Driven Strategy encompassed the knowledge I thought an MBA would give me. It is a practical use of all of the skills we learn at an MBA that can be implemented by big corporations and small companies. I am going to explain RDS to the small company where I currently work in the hopes of defining our strategy and improving our efforts to grow the company."
Michael Gryn

"One of the values of the SEV program is in its immediate applicability to both the workplace and to an individual's personal career strategy. Interpreting the tenets of great business strategy and applying it to my own personal career strategy has helped me think differently about my goals. It has assisted me in creating guidelines regarding what direction I would like my career to take me. I've also been able to apply it in the workplace."
Cecilia Brunetti, Manager of Operations, William Blair


"Return Driven Strategy provides a clear and concise way of looking at the key issues that drive profitable businesses. Its primary focus is on the customer and markets, and it ties the various business components back to these key issues."
—Samuel C. Scott III, Chairman and CEO, Corn Products International, and Board Member of Abbott and Motorola

"The Return Driven Strategy framework has enabled the senior leadership of our company to establish, implement and periodically realign a first-class, effective business strategy that produces real results. We know that we are working on the right things, for the right reasons. We also know that our periodic discussions are on point, and a good use of our valuable time. Our principles, business priorities and resources, are effectively aligned. From conceptual level to day to day execution, this thing really works."
John J. Mulherin, Chief Executive Officer, The Ziegler Companies, Inc.

"Return Driven Strategy helped us to create a REAL Strategic Plan and gave us the tools to examine every facet of our business. The result: sales are UP, profits are UP, and we are a better company in just about every area of our business. I just can't say enough about the positive effect RDS has had with us. It's provided everyone with an understandable framework to comprehend our business."
E. Terry Groff, President, READING BAKERY SYSTEMS

"Driven is an essential read for CEOs and senior managers. In a clear and readable style it successfully sets forth a road map for the creation of long term wealth. The book will also provide a valuable tool for investment managers and individual investors to identify companies whose shares have a high probability of producing long-run returns. Once read, Driven will be kept in the top drawer and referred to often."
 Al Heron, Former CEO of International Carriers, Inc., Treasurer of Esso Standard Eastern Philippines, Projects Manager of Infrastructure at Asian Development

"Imbedded in Return Driven Strategy are the undeniable truths of what works in the real world of business."
Edward J. Sierawski, Founder and CEO of Sequoia System International, Inc 500 High-Growth Private Business

"DRIVEN summarizes a breakthrough study that will change the way business will be done. It offers a simple and comprehensive framework for taking on today's complex business world. Notably, it shows how innovation beyond R&D is a key lever for generating business value, along with the important links to operations and marketing."
Hitendra Patel, Ph.D., Senior Leader of the Innovation Practice of the Monitor Group, and Professor of Innovation and Growth, Hult International Business School

"Return Driven Strategy provides an elegant framework for business strategy considerations. By that, I mean it is marked by ingenuity, simplicity and completeness. It was an effective tool for our firm as we embarked on our strategic assessment of our core business, which resulted in dramatic improvements in our business. I strongly endorse it for others following a similar path."
Jim Folkes, Former Vice President, Strategy and Business Development, Laidlaw Education Services

"DRIVEN provides a comprehensive and practical guide to students and management in the essential elements of how an organization can create Shareholder Value. I highly commend the authors' incorporation of the important people related considerations. Typically, most books only provide lip service in this area. Appropriate management of human capital is core to every great business strategy. The Return Driven Strategy framework does a great job of incorporating the role of human capital in the growth of financial capital."
Mark C. Ubelhart, Principal and Practice Leader of Value Based Management at Hewitt Associates, Architect of Hewitt's Human Capital Foresight (HCF™) methodology

"Finally, a growth strategy framework grounded in empirical data with real-world application! Driven provides a straightforward approach to profitable growth that should be embraced by all CEOs wanting to drive the value of their companies."
Gary A. Plaster, Author of the books "Beyond Six Sigma: Profitable Growth Through Customer Value Creation" and "The Road to Success: How to Manage Growth"

"I would reference the question, 'Are we doing the right things for the right reasons?' The value of Mission Driven Strategy has consistently rung true for me as it has helped us do exactly that: focus on the right initiatives and objectives for the right reasons to best serve the organization."
Kathy Apple, RN, MS, CAE, Chief Executive Officer and 2006 RWJ Executive Nurse Fellow, National Council of State Boards of Nursing (Referring to Mission Driven Strategy, the application of the Return Driven Strategy model in not-for-profit organizations.)

"Return Driven Strategy should be considered as a fundamental cornerstone to any strategic plan. It covers the critical points and facets for promoting an effective level of structured thinking that is necessary when launching a new product or service. It also allows a company to understand when an essential element of a strategic plan is missing."
Darren Guccione, President & CEO, Callpod, Inc.

Comments from Investment Professionals

"Frigo and Litman's framework allows the investor to judge the ability of companies to create lasting value and should be part of any investor's stock selection process."
Alfred Jackson, Former Head of Global Equity Research at Credit Suisse First Boston and Top-Ranked Stock Analyst

"Whether your goal is to improve business performance or to make better buy/hold/sell investment decisions, insights are needed to connect core principles of wealth creation to both reported financial performance and firm valuations in the stock market. Frigo and Litman put it all together for you."
Bartley J. Madden, Author of the books, "CFROI Valuation: A Total System Approach to Valuing the Firm" and "Maximizing Shareholder Wealth and the Greater Good"

"Frigo and Litman's book, DRIVEN, includes many valuable case studies of the fundamentals behind firm's cash flow track records. I believe these discussions can be beneficial to both investors and corporate managers in understanding the activities that truly drive company value."
Tim Bixler, Managing Director at Credit Suisse and Head of Credit Suisse HOLT

"DRIVEN explains a common-sense approach to strategy development. Linking strategy, execution and valuation is tough to do. By tying together the process to ethical value creation — and a passionate desire to deliver unique offerings to fulfill unmet needs - the authors lead us in the art of 'strategic fit.'"
Steven Kraus, Managing Director, Client Innovation, Credit Suisse

Comments from Academic Leaders

"The principles and concepts in Return Driven Strategy capture what we as educators and thought leaders should embed in our curricula and teachings in business schools throughout our undergraduate, graduate and executive education programs. Business schools must focus on the importance of a firm commitment to ethically create shareholder value."
Arthur Kraft, PhD, Chairman of the Board of Directors of The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International), Dean at George L. Argyros School of Business and Economics, Chapman University

"Return Driven Strategy and the book Driven will be invaluable in business and academia. Frigo and Litman's framework provides the right path for educating future business leaders and guiding today's leaders in navigating an ever-changing and complex business environment."
Dr. Ray Whittington, Dean, College of Commerce, DePaul University and Kellstadt Graduate School of Business

"The Return Driven Strategy framework can be a useful approach for strategic risk management and ERM. This framework fully describes the business strategy and activities that drive great financial performance and makes the connection between strategy and shareholder value. It can provide a way for directors and management to evaluate strategic plans and strategic initiatives and identify key risks that could destroy shareholder value while considering the upside of risk in terms of the opportunities."
Mark Beasley, PhD CPA, COSO Board Member, Director of the Enterprise Risk Management Initiative at North Carolina State University

"Return Driven Strategy provides a framework for educating tomorrow's leaders and reminding today's leaders of the importance of a true commitment to ethically maximize wealth in corporate governance and performance measurement."
Angelo Riccaboni, PhD, Dean of the School of Economics, University of Siena (Italy)

"Over the last decade, Frigo and Litman have been instrumental in identifying and bringing together the fundamental strategies that enhance shareholder value. In Driven, they have managed to neatly organize these strategies into a coherent whole, making them both intelligible and relevant to a wide audience."
Keith M. Howe, PhD, Editor of Journal of Applied Finance, Former Associate Editor of Financial Management, William M. Scholl Professor Finance, Kellstadt Graduate School of Business, DePaul University

"Frigo and Litman's Return Driven Strategy is valuable in the boardroom and the classroom. For professors and students in business schools it provides a framework for placing any business discipline in the perspective of overall business strategy. As a board member of a corporation in the investment services industry, I have seen how Frigo and Litman's framework provides a means for the board the focus on the right issues in corporate governance, especially as they relate to communicating strategic performance goals and empowering management to achieve them while ethically increasing shareholder value."
Belverd E. Needles, Jr., PhD CPA, Ernst & Young Distinguished Professor of Accountancy, DePaul University, Past President of the International Association for Accounting Education and Research.