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Maset News

July 15, 2009

Creating a Cost Effective Corporate Training Organization

Maset consultants are very experienced in the creation of effective training organizations and Corporate Universities at companies such as Motorola Citigroup, Wipro, Milliken & Company, Asian Pulp & Paper and Chevron.

Serving as a consultant/mentor to the corporation's learning leaders and organization, the Maset consultant will guide you through the following activities as well as any other identified activities. It is our mission to leave you with a fully functioning, effective, training organization with properly trained personnel.

  1. The first critical step needs to be a clear understanding with the Senior Management as to the purpose of the corporate training organization and how it aligns with the business' Critical Business Issues.

    In many organizations, the Corporate Training Organization was initially established to address specific Critical Business Issues - at Motorola and American Express, it was Quality (Six Sigma), at GE, it was leadership development, at Asian Pulp & Paper it was technology/staff development, at Milliken it was quality and efficiency, at Chevron, it was (is) accelerating performance - particularly at key transition steps (e.g. new employee, new supervisor, new manager of manager); Disney, the delivery at all levels of customer satisfaction and entertainment.

    It is important that the organization be mindful/follow the organization's established change model (or decide on a change model) since the establishment of a corporate training organization is truly a culture change.

  2. The second step is to identify who are the training organization's stakeholders, what are their expectations, prioritize them, and decide on how their realistic expectations, and how this will be communicated. These stakeholders must include the top management, sector management, local and regional management as well as employees, and customers. It is absolutely critical that the expectations of all stakeholders be properly set with appropriate measurements as to their success be established both short term and long term.

  3. The third step is to identify the sponsor and agree with the sponsor as to how the sponsor will support and ensure the success of the training organization. It is critical that the sponsor be the CEO of the organization, particularly since the establishment of a corporate training organization often initially creates tension in the organization as the local/other training organizations will feel threatened. The sponsor must "walk the talk" and measure his direct reports on their support of this initiative.

    That sponsor is responsible for ensuring that local management supports/participates in the activities of the corporate training organization through clear expectations, measurements and rewards/disincentives where appropriate. This is absolutely critical as the most effective roll out of this type of changes, is top down; with local management visibly involved in the roll out and modeling the proper behaviors.

    Another vehicle for obtaining buy-in as well as inputs which have been effectively used by a number of organizations is a guidance group, made up of members of the most highly prioritized stakeholders who meet regularly and advise and provide inputs on the corporate training organization's plans/etc.

Steps #1-3 are usually established through facilitated sessions and meeting with the (1) sponsor; (2) senior management and (3) representatives of the identified stakeholder groups).

  1. The source of the training organization's funding - preferably the corporate coffers - needs to be established for the first two years. This shows support from the corporate office and avoids the arguments, at least initially as to "what is this going to cost me?" from the sectors/regions.

  2. The corporate training organization, with the inputs of the sponsor and key stakeholders, must establish its own vision, mission and statement of strategic objectives. This is usually done during a series of facilitated sessions with the key corporate training department employees and then meet with the sponsor for approval.

  3. These must then be clearly communicated - again setting clear stakeholder expectations both short and long term - to the various stakeholder groups.

    It also needs to be decided at this time the reporting relationship of the corporate training organization - it is strongly recommended that at least initially, the organization report directly to the CEO/sponsor.

  4. Once the vision, mission and statement of strategic objectives for the corporate training organization (carefully aligned with those of the corporation) are established, the structure and identification, attraction, training of required talent must be completed. Procedures, goals and budgets must be established and approved. Training of the organization's team, particularly in communication, teaming, and customer (stakeholder) satisfaction is essential.

  5. The design/development and delivery of the learning interventions and the methodology used to do so must be established and strictly adhered to in order to maximize impact, minimize costs and cycle time. See Maset's section on Instructional Design for more specifics on this process.

  6. Roll out of the initial offerings - such as training support for the roll out of the vision/values initiative - must be identified and a project plan put in place. This project plan must also consider the involvement/ communication to the various stakeholders and budget. The type of training (e.g. instructor led, remote training, etc.), who will do the training (including involvement of local management) and the non-training support systems, which must be in place for the training to be successful, must also be identified.

Contact Maset to discuss how we can help you in the establishment of a corporate training organization. Maset also can help you audit your existing corporate training organization.

Watch your e-mail for many additional ways of improving your operations and for important articles of interest. We welcome your comments and requests.

Maset has the ability, the resources, and a history of successes, making us confident in our ability to deliver superior results for your organization.

Contact Charles Loew today to get started.

Charles Loew
Maset, LLC

phone: 520-568-6355    cell: 602-721-3680    fax: 520-568-6355

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