Business Education for Life in the Twenty-First Century - Case Studies

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  • 1. Business Education for Life in the Twenty-First Century CASE STUDY SCENARIO – GROUP 1 KEY THEME/ISSUE: ROI; Measures of Impact. DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPINS IN 2 OR 3 SENTENCES Talking two different languages – Senior Executives and L&D professionals. WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN? Boardroom. WHO ARE THE CHARACTERS AND WHAT ARE THEIR DRIVING AGENDAS? L&D Technical Expert: Driving agenda: to do the right thing; they are passionate about learning; sometimes this passion may be misinterpreted by Senior Executives. Senior Executive: Driving agenda: shareholder pressure or tax payer pressure; concerns regarding the budget and cost containment; may not see ROI. Head of Department: Driving agenda: wants outcomes; interventions; just wants it fixed; make it happen; can’t cope with behaviour and too much emotion and L&D jargon. CASE STUDY SCENARIO – GROUP 2 KEY THEME/ISSUE: Use what is within to do more with less. Essentially, how can we maximise the use of our internal resources. DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPINS IN 2 OR 3 SENTENCES A global learning solution is advised and to be consistent we shouldn’t significantly change for specific regions. Also, we are expected to deliver the program with capacity and capability constraints in our region. WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN? Globally WHO ARE THE CHARACTERS AND WHAT ARE THEIR DRIVING AGENDAS? 1. Partners and other key stakeholders 2. L&D function (global director) 3. L&D function (regional and L&D leads) MGSM & Be Learning Forum – 11/02/2010
  • 2. Business Education for Life in the Twenty-First Century CASE STUDY SCENARIO – GROUP 3 KEY THEME/ISSUE: Do people actually want to learn? DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPINS IN 2 OR 3 SENTENCES L&D managers reflect on their last year in their organisations at a Xmas Party. WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN? Company Christmas Party. WHO ARE THE CHARACTERS AND WHAT ARE THEIR DRIVING AGENDAS? L&D Manager 1: Frustrated at low attendance and cancellations, is concerned that ‘people are not interested’ and that ‘L&D is not valued by senior management or the culture’. L&D Manager 2: Frustrated at ‘serial attendees’, questions whether they are really interested in learning, worried about the ‘tick in the box’ mentality. L&D Manager 3: Wondering whether this is a ‘needs analysis’ problem that can be addressed through better L&D techniques or a ‘cultural’ problem that is beyond the control of the L&D team. Raises the issue of what does ‘leadership’ involve in the face of these problems, and to create learning in an organisation. OPENING LINE: L&D Manager 1: “‘Bugger! I’m really tired.” OTHER DISCUSSION POINTS:  The group was interested in a number of issues.  Academic learning was too distant, not practical and often assignment driven.  Pressure at work means there is no time or space for learning in the workplace.  People skills are identified as central, not ‘process’ but ‘interpersonal’ skills are the ‘hard stuff’.  ROI comes up on all flipcharts, so how to demonstrate learning and show its contribution to strategy is a key challenge.  Want to learn – there was a concern that there was more compliance in training, having to learn and being compliant, than genuine interest. Not sure who really wants to go on courses, some don’t and others just don’t think but put themselves down for ‘development’. MGSM & Be Learning Forum – 11/02/2010
  • 3. Business Education for Life in the Twenty-First Century CASE STUDY SCENARIO – GROUP 4 KEY THEME/ISSUE: Engaging and educating leadership. How do we integrate? How do we ensure we are part of the strategy? How do we influence strategy? DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPINS IN 2 OR 3 SENTENCES We are engaged late, or not at all. We see the management team coming to us with an immediate need e.g.: around risk. “We want this, and we want it now”. WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN? Law Firm Meeting room WHO ARE THE CHARACTERS AND WHAT ARE THEIR DRIVING AGENDAS? Partner: Wants compliance on Risk Management in relation to financial environment. HR Manager: Wants to keep the Partner happy. General Counsel: Wants to look at big picture strategy. OTHER DISCUSSION POINTS:  Execution in relation to the business  Leaders not embracing learning. strategy.  Not being able to see tangible results of  What’s the value add – ROI. learning.  Tension between the day to day, and the  Measurable outcomes. big picture.  Reactive learning – Fix a Problem, vs.  Establishing credibility. Strategic Learning  Access – why do external consultants’ often  Leaders walking the talk – we need to know more about our business than us? appeal to their priorities in order for them  Hierarchy – limited access due to structure. to champion it.  ‘Find the lever’.  Pressure of external environment.  Leadership.  Going ‘back to basics’.  Has the definition of leadership changed?  PD fatigue.  Graduate seeking leadership in the legal  Finding sponsors. firms.  ‘Sneaking in’ learning outcomes e.g.  Tensions between old and new ways of accidental learning. learning.  Asking business questions – are we being  Leaders not being clear on their role in strategic enough? relation to learning.  Educating ourselves in how to be more  Learning not being ‘up there’ with strategic and consultative. profit/business/sales. MGSM & Be Learning Forum – 11/02/2010
  • 4. Business Education for Life in the Twenty-First Century CASE STUDY SCENARIO – GROUP 5 KEY THEME/ISSUE: Move L&D from being SME where we solve problems to an enabler, inquiry and advocacy. DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPINS IN 2 OR 3 SENTENCES CEO recognises lack of leadership skills, calls in consultants to fix, but then announces he’s retiring. WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN? CEO’s Office. WHO ARE THE CHARACTERS AND WHAT ARE THEIR DRIVING AGENDAS? CEO: Results oriented; wants to leave a legacy of leadership. Head of L&D: Keep CEO happy. Consultant: Make money ; has a passion for making a difference. OPENING LINE: “We all know management is good at what they do but they’re crap at management”. OTHER DISCUSSION POINTS: Issue 1 – Competency Frameworks  Qualification levels necessary and entry paths needed for Job category.  Variability and inconsistency of providers.  Who sets the criteria?  Is it still appropriate? Issue 2 – Business Education Focus  Tend to be very reactionary.  Needs whole of life focus.  Teach people how to learn not just content.  Teach about life first, skills second.  Short-term to long-term. Issue 3 – Philosophy of Education  Tasmanian school example.  Get students to ask right questions.  Need flexible approach.  Army example – Mindset is train leadership skills from the get go rather than introducing later in life/career.  Tendency to be prescriptive. MGSM & Be Learning Forum – 11/02/2010
  • 5. Business Education for Life in the Twenty-First Century CASE STUDY SCENARIO – GROUP 6 KEY THEME/ISSUE: For managers, to develop their capability to properly develop their team members. DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPINS IN 2 OR 3 SENTENCES HR person trying to persuade a manager as to the benefits of their role in leading and developing their team. Reactive need for training – legislation breach. WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN? Meeting room – meeting about a particular roll-out. WHO ARE THE CHARACTERS AND WHAT ARE THEIR DRIVING AGENDAS? Manager: Wants to achieve outcomes; achieve KPIs. Doesn’t want to be overloaded. HR Representative: Engagement; retention; need for change; the logic of argument. Business Head: Need for change on a broad level. OTHER DISCUSSION POINTS: Issue 1 – Pursuit of innovation multi-media  More information – less engagement.  LMS: less human engagement – where is the relevance?  Positive: Integral film – relevant scenario too realistic.  FLM: 80-90 people; community network of people in the same boat.  Benefits: people talking; anecdotal. Issue 2 – Budget  Business expects a one size fits all. But you need to customise which raises the budget.  Condensing programs down. Issue 3 – Leaders not talking the talk  Educate the leaders to educate their staff.  Expectations of staff/managers to lead – to do what?  Managers being stretched too far.  Law firm – fee earners. MGSM & Be Learning Forum – 11/02/2010
  • 6. Business Education for Life in the Twenty-First Century CASE STUDY SCENARIO – GROUP 9 KEY THEME/ISSUE: Priority of Learning  Cultural change required to prioritise learning;  Short term requirements and demands (i.e. clients, deadlines) come first vs. investment/development in learning;  Late cancellations change dynamics of group as less numbers. DESCRIBE WHAT HAPPINS IN 2 OR 3 SENTENCES  L&D manager and GM enthusiastic about upcoming program and agree this is a priority 2 weeks before.  Day prior GM pulls himself and 2 others off the training as an urgent client issue means they need to go to Melbourne  Program needs to be rescheduled as GM needs to be there. WHERE DOES IT HAPPEN? Office plus phone conversation (to cancel) WHO ARE THE CHARACTERS AND WHAT ARE THEIR DRIVING AGENDAS? L&D consultant: Strategic, passionate, invested a lot of time and energy into program and was given the green light General Manager: Has to meet budget and if this client pulls out they will lose them and he will have a 500K gap in his target. Facilitator: Prepared and ready to go, invested his own time. OTHER DISCUSSION POINTS: Issue 1 – Lack of resources Issue 3 – Broad skills base  Lack of funds.  Labourers through to executives.  Unrealistic expectations set at executive  Sites all over the country and ranging for level about what is achievable and what 10 staff to 1000’s. people can deliver.  Hard to deliver consistent training.  Trade off is increased hours which leads  E-learning compromised as bandwidth to higher turnover of staff. and computers vary from site – from  Not sustainable in the long term. fibre through to dial up.  Many blue collar workers see training as Issue 2 – Priority of learning a chore.  Executive team often no shows.  High levels of regulatory compliance  Priority vs. deadlines and clients. around safety and site inductions.  Long term investment.  Technical vs. soft skills (i.e. a lot of Issue 4 – Constant restructures budget is used up in technical training  Lack of consistency. though they desperately need to include  Loss of knowledge. soft skills).  Reactive vs. strategic.  Rework. MGSM & Be Learning Forum – 11/02/2010