The Volvo Group equips its leaders for new challenges

28 June 2019

We live in a changing and multifaceted world that is being driven forward by digitalisation, globalisation, new technology and new business models. In partnership with GU School of Executive Education, the Volvo Group Corporate University is developing Volvo Group’s leaders to handle the challenges of today and tomorrow.

Since 2017, the ABLE programme (Advanced Business Leadership) has been developing leaders in the Volvo Group’s second-highest tier of management, known as Leading leaders. The participants are nominated from all over the world, and from all of the companies in the Group. So far, around 80 leaders have completed
the programme.

New knowledge, new perspectives

The School of Business, Economics and Law develops custom leadership programmes for a wide range of companies, both global and local, creating the conditions for decision-makers to develop new skills and reflect on the direction in which they want to take their operation.

“When you’re fully focused on your day to-day work, it can be hard to take a step back and think about what’s happening outside the Volvo Group. Getting to know people from other parts of our organisation is also an opportunity for the programme participants to avoid silo thinking and see new angles of approach,” says Marion Trumel, Learning Programme Manager at Volvo Group University.

In Gothenburg and Singapore

The programme is being delivered in collaboration with the School of Business, Economics and Law’s Finnish partner Aalto University Executive Education. This year the participants have assembled in Gothenburg and Singapore, where they have met leading lecturers from various parts of the world, most with links to academia.

“Our aim is to develop all the leaders within the Volvo Group, no matter which country they work in. For the ABLE programme, we wanted a supplier with roots in Swedish culture, since the Volvo Group has its headquarters in Sweden, but with a global presence so the participants get to meet lecturers from different cultural backgrounds. And by choosing GU School of Executive Education and Aalto University Excutive Education, that is exactly what we got,” says Marion Trumel.

Immediate benefit

When Marion Trumel meets former ABLE participants, many of them describe the programme as the best form of skills development they have ever had. Gregoire Ducasse, Director Medium Duty Trucks Range in St Priest, France, was one of the people taking the summer’s first module in Singapore: “The themes of the programme’s modules reflect the actual challenges I have within my organisation. Every day I have to deal with the uncertainty associated with new technology and its various issues. Now I’m finally getting the tools to manage that uncertainty,” he asserts.


The programme runs for 11 full days, spread over five months. The participants are encouraged to apply an outside-in perspective with a view to strengthening their customer focus, reassessing their organisation’s value creation and strategic thinking, and successfully driving and communicating change.