Uploaded on

 

More in: Business
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Be the first to comment
No Downloads

Views

Total Views
478
On Slideshare
0
From Embeds
0
Number of Embeds
0

Actions

Shares
Downloads
0
Comments
0
Likes
1

Embeds 0

No embeds

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
    No notes for slide

Transcript

  • 1. qwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvb Importance of Management Development in Human Resource Development and Corporate Strategy:nmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwer A Case study of Unilever China (Skin-Care Products Division) 12/24/2009tyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopas Author Namedfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghjklzxcvbnmqwertyuiopasdfghj
  • 2. Table of ContentsChapter 1: Introduction ............................................................................................................... 6Human Resource Development and Management Development ................................................... 6Unilever........................................................................................................................................... 8Purpose of Research ...................................................................................................................... 10 Research Objectives .................................................................................................................. 10 Research Questions ................................................................................................................... 11Significance of the Study .............................................................................................................. 12Overview ....................................................................................................................................... 12Chapter 2: Literature Review ................................................................................................. 13Introduction ................................................................................................................................. 13HRD and Two interpretations of Management Development ................................................. 14Management Development for Competitive Advantage .......................................................... 15Overall Corporate Strategy and Management Development ................................................... 17Management Development and Impact on managerial performance .................................... 18Management Development Strategies ....................................................................................... 21 Push and Pull Strategy ............................................................................................................ 21 Formal and Informal Development ....................................................................................... 22 Isolated or integrated Management Development ............................................................... 24Line Managers’ Perception of Management development ...................................................... 25Management Development and Transference to Practice ....................................................... 26Management Development and Role of Top Management ...................................................... 29Conclusion .................................................................................................................................... 31Chapter 3: Research Methods ................................................................................................... 32Qualitative Research ..................................................................................................................... 33Case Study .................................................................................................................................... 33 Research Instruments ................................................................................................................ 34 Secondary Research .............................................................................................................. 35 In-depth Interviews ............................................................................................................... 36Reliability...................................................................................................................................... 39Validity ......................................................................................................................................... 40 2
  • 3. Ethical Issues ................................................................................................................................ 40Chapter 4: Unilever HRD and MD Strategy---A Review of Literature ................................ 41Management Development Philosophy in Unilever ..................................................................... 42Changes in Unilever‘s HR Strategy and its MD Function 1999-2005 Path to Growth Strategy . 42 Unilever‘s Management Development System .................................................................... 45 Application of Management Development System .............................................................. 48 Performance development planning (PDP) .......................................................................... 49One Unilever Strategy 2005-Present: Outsourcing of HR Functions ........................................... 51HR BP role in the Operating Framework ..................................................................................... 52Service Relationship Model: ......................................................................................................... 54Service Mgmt roles fit with HR leadership .................................................................................. 54Conclusion .................................................................................................................................... 55Chapter 5: Interviews ................................................................................................................. 56Interviews of 10 Managers............................................................................................................ 56 Manager #1 ........................................................................................................................... 56 Manager # 2 .............................................................................................................................. 57 Manager # 3 .............................................................................................................................. 58 Manager # 4 .............................................................................................................................. 58 Manager # 5 .............................................................................................................................. 59 Manager # 6 .............................................................................................................................. 59 Manager # 7 .............................................................................................................................. 60 Manager # 8 .............................................................................................................................. 60 Manager # 9 .............................................................................................................................. 60 Manager # 10 ............................................................................................................................ 61Interviews of 2 Superiors .............................................................................................................. 62 Superior # 1 ............................................................................................................................... 62 Superior # 2 ............................................................................................................................... 63Conclusion .................................................................................................................................... 63Chapter 6: Discussion ................................................................................................................. 64Discussion and Analysis ............................................................................................................... 64 Major Changes in HR Policy .................................................................................................... 65 Role of MD in Individual‘s Development ................................................................................ 65 Competencies Acquired ............................................................................................................ 66 Integration of Corporate and Individual Goals ......................................................................... 66 3
  • 4. Influence on Performance ......................................................................................................... 66 Impact of Outsourcing .............................................................................................................. 66Conclusion .................................................................................................................................... 67Chapter 7: Findings and Conclusion ........................................................................................ 67Overview ....................................................................................................................................... 67Findings......................................................................................................................................... 68Implications for Human Resource Management and Development ............................................. 69Limitations .................................................................................................................................... 70Further Research ........................................................................................................................... 70Appendices ................................................................................................................................... 71Appendix I: References................................................................................................................. 72Appendix II: Questions for Interviews ......................................................................................... 82 Questionnaire for Managers ...................................................................................................... 82 Questionnaire for Superiors ...................................................................................................... 83 4
  • 5. AcknowledgementAbstractThis dissertation is a case study of Unilever PLC one of the largest multinational organisations inthe world. It analyses the organisation within the framework of human resource development andmanagement development and tries to understand the relevance of management development(MD) in a corporation‘s overall business strategy and it how it influences the performance ofindividual mangers. The reports also considers management development as a strategic tooltrying to understand how Unilever has used it. The study relies on secondary research as well asin-depth interviews to answer all the research questions posed in the first chapter. From the studyit becomes apparent that the importance of MD is increasing and Unilever does appreciate itslong term importance both at individual and corporate level. 5
  • 6. Chapter 1: IntroductionHuman Resource Development and Management DevelopmentHuman resource management is considered to be one of the key areas of management process.Human resource development is one of the main functions of human resource management. Overthe past decade human resource development (HRD) has been identified by differentacademicians and researchers as a key not only for development of employees but also as astrategic tool for an organisation. Today employees and managers are considered as stakeholdersin organisations along with customers, suppliers and shareholders. For any organisation toprosper, it is important that the employees are not only hired and retained but it is in the bestinterest of the organisations that their skills and capabilities are further developed and nurtured.This is in turn allows employees to improve their competencies and strategically enhances their 6
  • 7. performance and also give the firm a competitive advantage. In the globalised workenvironment, large multinational corporations rely on HRD as an instrument to not only develophuman resources to deal in an international environment but also gives an organisationcompetitive advantage in both local and global markets. The degree of success in HRD throughdifferent practices also is an added factor in any competitive advantage gained (Horwitz, 1999).In assition the strategic nature of HRD has made is an important part of HRM as it it acts as achannel to improve performance and competencies. Therefore HRD is directly linked toproductivity, market share and even sales (Horwitz, 1999).As in the case of the relationship between HRD and HRM, at managerial level managementdevelopment is a very important HRD function. Management development gives specificimportance to developing broad, synchronized and active methods for managerial learningprograms. These initiatives are carried out in form of internal and external programs and formaland/or informal processes. This is done to achieve corporate objectives in a competitiveenvironment. Management development is based on the premise that managerial learning shouldnot be accidental rather it should be part of the overall business process. There is a need for aconsistent policy and practices for successful implementation of MD. This is important becauseMD cannot be carried out in isolation it has to be entrenched in the overall strategic philosophyto benefit all the stakeholders (Akuratiyagamage, 2007).In the international environment, there is a need for large corporations to choose from a numberof options to develop their internal human resource potential, they are free to use differentmeans. No matter which route is considered organisations should support learning anddevelopment activities and this need has been recognised and underscored. Even though todaydevelopment models use action learning and real challenges, but formal management 7
  • 8. development programs are even today very popular. It is thought that these formal programsgive development process a paradigm shift as the employees are able to think and interact indifferent environments. However what is significant is how the learning process is transferredinto workplace(Belling, 2001). Management development is used as an instrument more in larger corporations than in small ormedium sized organisations. The next section briefly discusses Unilever, which has been chosenas a case study to understand management and whether it is successfully implemented in the caseof this multinational corporation.UnileverThis research is explores the role of management development within Unilever, it traces itsevolution and its impact on HRD and business strategy. Unilever is one of the biggest FMCGcompanies in the world with The company operates under a dual structure, Unilever PLC andUnilever NV—both are parent companies of the Unilever Group. Although both organisationsare separate legal entities with different stock listings but they operate as a single entity. It is atruly global concern with its operations in Europe, The Americas, Asia and Africa and itsheadquarters in the UK. It has 179,000 employees working for it (Data Monitor, 2008).There have been many changes in the way HR activities are conducted in different organisationsin recent years. Management philosophy has moved away from the traditional approach of profitmaximisation towards a more holistic approach which includes the empowerment anddevelopment of managers at different levels and considering them as stakeholders and significantcontributors to the organisation. Because Unilever is one of the major leading Multinationalorganisations in the world and has been in existence for over a century it is important to 8
  • 9. understand the secret of its sustained success. It is crucial to understand what the organisationconsiders its employees to be and in what way do these measures shape employees‘ perceptionsabout their place in the organisation and also how it is reflected in their individual performance.Unilever is a traditional multinational organisation, but with changes in time, nature andexpectations of people has evolved and this along with the changing trends from within thecompany has led to the establishment of management development as a strategic instrument inmeeting the goals (Human Resource Management International Digest, 2002).Unilever has responded to the changing needs and times by putting more emphasis onmanagement development. Human resource development at Unilever has two major objectives:(Human Resource Management International Digest, 2002)  Developing the potential leaders of the organisation  Developing persons to accomplish their best abilitiesThe second objective is not just climbing the corporate ladder but a means to facilitate staffmembers to extend their professional capability as a result this may in turn aid the performancegrowth of the organisation. HR development has to match the strategic long-term goals of theorganisation (Human Resource Management International Digest, 2002).These efforts have been made globally in different countries, however the research would focuson one country China and a single division: Personal Care Division of the organizationheadquartered in Shanghai to understand the importance of management development onSHRM and corporate strategy in competitive environment. 9
  • 10. Purpose of ResearchThe central objective of this study is to understand why a corporation like Unilever opts formanagement development. It also aims to find how effective the management development is asa tool not only at the level of human resources but also as a strategic tool. The dissertation usesboth secondary sources and in-depth interviews to understand the impact of managementdevelopment on managerial performance. Interviews of both managers and their superiors wereconducted to understand the perspective of those who experience MD and also those who are in aposition to see whether it is translated into more productive employee and whether it is in linewith the overall corporate strategy.Research ObjectivesThe main research objectives would be:  To find the main driving factors that lead to management development  To understand the theoretical perspectives that led to implementation of managerial development plan  To understand the impact of management development in terms of employees acquiring skills and competencies and their development and performance  To understand the effect of management development in terms of organisational development and competitive advantage  To understand if performance of managers and the role played by senior management in encouraging or discouraging management development 10
  • 11. Research QuestionsKeeping in mind the above objectives the research questions are two-pronged; to first understandthe overall MD and HRD strategy. For this following questions would be relevant:  How does Unilever regard management generally regard management development in the field of HRD and also strategic policy formulation?  How has the MD strategy evolved in the past ten years?  What steps are taken to make management development and important part of human resource development?  How has management development practice evolved as part of the overall corporate strategy?  What has been observed by researchers studying their policies and measures in terms of management development?For the Personal care division in China following would be the research questions:  How has management development changed with the new policy implementation?  major competencies were acquired by managers during and after the management development process?  Were these competencies helpful strategically to the manager and the organisation?  What was the impact of management development on managers‘ performance?  Did their performance improve?  What were the changes perceived by the managers and their superiors? 11
  • 12. Significance of the StudyHRD and MD have increasingly gained importance as more and more organisations realise thatthese functions can be utilised not only to train and develop employees and use MD as a tool forinternal recruitment, but this instrument is increasingly being embedded in the in the overallcorporate strategy and regarded as a competitive advantage for an organisation. This particularstudy seeks to find out the nature MD taking place in a large corporation like Unilever and alsoto see how effectively it is being carried out in case of the organisation‘s Chinese operations.Even though this researcher is a student with little experience, however, this dissertation wouldcontribute towards understanding MD from a more practical perspective.OverviewThis report is divided into seven chapters. Next chapter is a detailed look at existing literature,which is followed by research methods chapter which outline the theory and actual researchmethods to be used for this study. Chapter four and five are case study of Uniliver moving frommore general practices and policies as understood from secondary research to a more in-depthlook as one division of the organisation in China. Chapter six discusses the information of theprevious two chapters, while chapter seven is the concluding chapter with a brief summary andfindings of the study. 12
  • 13. Chapter 2: Literature ReviewIntroductionAn organisation‘s competitiveness is generally associated with improving managerialcapabilities, training and development also called human development (Worrall and Cooper,2001). And the quality of an employee‘s contribution is fundamentally founded in how theacquired knowledge and skill is applied. Management development is not a very narrow concept.Its definition as provided by Baldwin and Patgett (1994, p. 270) “the complex process by whichindividuals learn to perform effectively in managerial roles”. This is because when one talksabout adults it is clear that they learn in different ways and development of managers is done inmany ways intentionally or involuntarily in an organised or unorganised way or evenindependently by an individual.It is important first to understand what researchers believe what managers really do. Accordingto previous studies. Some researchers who have studied managers show managers to be differentfrom the general picture of a careful alert goal oriented coherent decision maker. Instead a studyby Fores and Sorge (1981) observed managers and according to them managers are time-stresses 13
  • 14. and more interested in dealing with day-to-day issues, who are interrupted regularly and areunable to prioritise most of the time. Stewart (1968) on the other hand noted that the nature of amanager‘s job is multitasking with each manager carrying out different activities in a space of aday. Mintzberg (1973), in a study of CEO found that even at the highest level there were shortspan activities which occupied them and the most important way that managers got hold ofinformation was through talking with colleagues rather than superiors or subordinates (McCall,1978. On the whole managers react to problems as they occur and they deal with them withoutprioritising them or categorising them. Decisions are more or less intuitive based on theinformation gained. It is believed that with more sophistication stress levels and number ofactivities has improved.HRD and Two interpretations of Management DevelopmentManagement development stresses on building of broad, synchronised and dynamic initiativesfor managerial learning both within and outside an organisation. This is done to allow theorganisation to achieve its organisational goals and objectives in a competitive atmosphere.management development it is based on the understanding that managerial learning is a plannedpart of the business process rather than taking place unintentionally, therefore is integrated intothe human resource management system. For successful management development there needsto be a consistent set of policies and practices which jointly ensure that learning is an integralpart of an organisation for all the individuals and institutions involved.Organisations today are dealing with constantly evolving environment and rapidly changingsituations which have not been witnessed before. For any organisation to be successful in ahighly competitive environment it is important for each organisation to keep on altering its 14
  • 15. different aspects like organisational structure, IT, business operations and culture (Sun, 2000).Organisational development is a collection of ideas and strategies that can be used to enhance abilities andcapacity of an organisation and its human resources at group level and at individual level(Beer and Walton,1987; Doorewaard and Benschop, 2003; Francis, 2003). Human resource development involves developmentand adaption to change as emphasis is on individual learning and this is the basis of organisational learning(Elkjaer,2001; Grey and Antonacopoulou, 2007; Walton 1999). HRD spotlights the skills and abilities ofindividuals and their needs in order that all employees can work within an organisation context (Megginson etal. 1993).According to Simmonds and Pedersen, (2006) in their literature review indicate that limited research has beencarried out in development of HRD theory in the past twenty years. Since HRD became a popular practicethere has been a division in how HRD is applied. The division can be seen in the American approach whichemphasises performance outcome paradigm, in which individual development was stressed for organisationaloutcomes(Swanson and Holton, 2001). Most of this was based on organisational development theory (DeSimone et a.l, 2002). The British on the other hand have followed learning and development framework whichcentres on improving training and development, within this paradigm management development is consideredan important way of developing managers Garavan et al., 1999).Management Development for Competitive AdvantageIt is now believed that competitive advantage is internal to an organisation rather than part ofexternal environment as thought before (Longenecker and Ariss, 2002; Ulrich and Lake, 1990).Currently in the business environment high performing managers are hard to find and verydifficult to groom and cannot be substituted easily. Managers are also considered in many casesas very valuable assets of an organisation (Rauschet al., 2002; Wright and Ferris 1996).Therefore for any organisation development of managers is essential. When this is applied in aglobal environment, understanding, acquiring of awareness and adaption to continuously 15
  • 16. evolving situation are important factors that contribute to international business performance(Lyles and Salk, 1996). As a result management development activities are necessary part oforganisations who aim to achieve excellence and who want to invest intelligently in humanresources. Following this idea there are two options available to organisations. They can eitherrecruit employees and managers, or they can enhance the skills and capabilities of their presentemployees by providing development opportunities by selecting candidates(Delaney andHuselid, 1996).previous research suggests that investing in managers in terms of training anddevelopment in a strategically cantered approach management development can give morevariable and long-term benefits, as this is a value added business strategy (Kirkbride, 2003;Longenecker and Ariss, 2002; Shefy and Sadler-Smith, 2006; Storey and Sisson, 1993). Thismay also hold true, for those individual who may demand additional premium for their skills areexpected to change their jobs, therefore it is not easy to expect commitment from suchindividuals (Kim, 2005; Walton, 1999). As a result organisations have to deal with issue ofoffering individual employees, possibilities to develop. This leads to a relationship which isbased on mutual respect and benefit to both the organisation and individual employee. Accordingto Bagshaw (1996) this on one hand improves the employee‘s performance and enhances his orher contribution to the organisation and allows them an opportunity to capitalise on their owndevelopment. A new relationship is also formed between the organisation and its employee.Organisations in this become committed to developing individuals, while the individuals returnwhatever they have learned into the organisation. This is a cycle which continues till therelationship lasts. Therefore instead of permanence there is a shared growth which replaces it.Within this paradigm conditions for learning can lead to higher commitment levels from theemployees and also leads to a perception that organisation is a good place to work (Belling, 16
  • 17. 2004; Schuler, 1987).According to Bender et al., (1996), management development and learninghas progressed into a new role which balances the interests of manager and the organisation.Researchers and academics, understanding the value of learning, propose that organisationsshould take steps to encourage and channelize measures to develop managers.Overall Corporate Strategy and Management DevelopmentCorporate or business strategy influences management development, and managementdevelopment also influences strategic decision making. Traditional understanding of influenceon strategy on management development it that HRD would only be considered when corporatestrategy is formed, however this understanding is no longer applicable (Wright and Ferris, 1996).For management development to be successful it needs to considered as part of the processwhere strategy is developed, because the organisation is dependent on using all its resources todeal with different internal and external challenges (Kirkbride, 2003; Longenecker and Ariss,2002; Luoma, 2005). This idea of management development provides a wide array of options todifferent organisational problems, so that HR is in goal identification and evaluation oforganisational capacity (Fulmer et al., 2000; Rausch et al., 2002; Tichy, 2002). Thereforemanagement development has to be undertaken with the intent of management policies andprocedures are integrated within an organisation‘s general mission (Walton, 1999).Managementdevelopment strategy on one hand provide long-term commitment, while its implementationshow an organisation‘s commitment to continuous development learning and developmentprocess not only to maximise their contribution, but also help them in improving their standingwithin an organisation. For this to occur it is important that management development is 17
  • 18. incorporated into the business strategy vertically. When the influence of managementdevelopment is considered it is found to influence strategy in several ways. Managementdevelopment helps in creating both directly and indirectly, organisational cultures (Fombrun,1984; Hendry, 1995). Management development also is fundamental because the quality ofmanagement usually ensures how strategy is formulated and what kind of input is made bymanagers. Business strategy is more successful when it is formed around the core businessactivities, rather than management development being regarded as an independent contributionwhich is not part of the core business strategy (Hendry, 1995). As a result managementdevelopment provides quality and quantity of human resources.Management Development and Impact on managerialperformance There is very limited existing research which directly links management development with managers‘performance. According to Storey et al., (1997), it was found that UK companies had changedthemselves in terms of management development, and the amount of training being offered muchmore than before and management development was considered an important part oforganisational activity. This change was visible in smaller and larger concerns. Keeping this inmind the idea that management development may be a strategic tool is now more widelyaccepted, however, many believed that there was a causal connection between managementdevelopment and organisational performance (Miller, 1991). Storey et al., survey furtherreiterated this fact that organisations considered MD to have beneficial impact on organisation‘sprofitability. Some theorists contend that organisation‘s leadership should take on the role ofmanagement development. Like higher level managers mentoring lower level managers or 18
  • 19. providing motivation to others to follow. Winterton and Winterton (1997) provide veryconclusive evidence which shows a positive linkage between management development andperformance of individuals and organisation. According to them when management developmentobjectives are integrated into organisational strategy the connection between development andperformance is clearly enhanced. However the problems abound not because of absence ofmanagement development or lack of development opportunities. According to Pickering andMatson, (1992) in spite of good management development programs managers don‘t havesufficient organisational support to convert their learning to a more practical use. They indicatethat the trainees also encountered hostilities which often led to distress and disappointment. Theresult is that it is not just the courses which are the problem it is the organisational culture andother organisational issues. It is important therefore to understand the role of managementdevelopment and management should be aware of the changes needed and the developmentactivity should be more focused. Dave Ulrich (1998) observes that organisation‘s competence“works when senior managers ensure that development is more than an academic exercise, whentraining is tied to business results not theory…”According to Longenecker and Fink (2001), it is important for both organisations and people ochange their old behaviours and adopt those procedures and attitudes that make them moreefficient and successful (Senge, 1990). They state:Thus, the name of the new game is change in the search of competitive advantage. To this end,most modern organizations are presently engaged in a myriad of organizational change effortsaimed at improving performance. New strategies are being considered which require differentorganizational skill sets or behaviours. The complexity involved in implementing new strategies 19
  • 20. has increased and the time available to managers to respond to competitive threats andimplement changes has shortened.To remain competitive in a changing and more global environment, organisations have changedtheir distribution and supply changes have been reorganised, relationship with differentstakeholders has been changed and workforce‘s efficiency and productivity has been evaluated toand these are just a few of the minor changes which have been carried out by organisations todeal with the new economic realities. Especially in the face of rapidly changing externalenvironment there is a need for organisations to have effective leadership which is proactivelyable to deal with. Drucker also indicates that change needs effective development of managers.Thus in this fluid environment dynamics of management development cannot remain constant,there is need to change them with time as they help managers in acquiring capabilities necessaryto function successfully(McCall et al., 1988). Fulmer indicates that because of rapidorganisational evolution, management development has also to change to keep up with newrealities. According Longenecker and Fink (2001):Ultra-competitive environments require organizational change; organizational change requireseffective managerial performance; effective managerial performance requires appropriate skillsand behaviour. Appropriate skills and behaviour development is facilitated through appropriateand effective management development activities. And different management developmentactivities may be required depending on which skills and behaviours are in most demand ofdevelopment by the organization at a particular time (e.g. planning, organizing, leading andcontrolling vs. new and different ways of thinking, acquisition of new business skills, anddevelopment of different leadership and communication behaviours. 20
  • 21. Management Development StrategiesPush and Pull StrategyAccording to Pauwee and Williams (2001), there are two ways of developing managers:Push strategy is the traditional method, a classic management development program wheremanagers in a certain salary group or age group undergo training and development. They areselected to undertake a course and this was done especially during the earlier years. In manycases management trainees would have to come back for more training as they would proceed toa higher rung in the management ladder.Pull strategy is based on the requirements of individuals working, when they request to betrained. This is just in time training for needs which may not have been anticipated by themanagement.These strategies suggest that there are certain times in a mangers‘ career when training isrequired, as it was Jordan (1968) who indicated that individuals learn more when they are readyto learn. However there are many instances when there are situations where development isneeded in addition because of the global realities, managers face tasks which are unprecedented.For example scenarios where transfers may mean international transfers, In these scenarios pullstrategy appears to be more effective as more spontaneous development opportunities tend toarise and the training would be more inclusive, instead of training of one manager, as teamsundergo training and development. There may be some advantages associated with the pushstrategy as it may increase motivation levels of employees. 21
  • 22. Formal and Informal DevelopmentThe second issue which is important in the case of management development as indicated byPauwee and Williams, (2001) is whether management development programs are controlled inform of formalised class-room based programs or should they be more hands on informalprocesses?Organisations can use both formal and informal processes.Informal Management Development Process: Informal process occurs as a consequence oforganisational operations. Like interpersonal communication or accomplishing of objectives, andmanagers in this case may not be intentionally prepared to learn something through a formalprogram (Holden and Hamblett, 1998; Järvinen and Poikela, 2001; Marsick and Watkins, 1997;Mumford, 1997).Formal Management Development Process: formal processes are pre-planned training anddevelopment programs, which are usually initiated by organisation, and are observed and evencontrolled by higher organisational forces Marsick and Watkins, 1997; Mumford, 1997).Although research indicates that informalprocesses are preferred by individual managers fromformal management development processes (Mumford, 1997). There are several reasons whyinformal processes are considered more effective than formal processes, are that in many casesformal training programs which are not on the job are not considered practical or and are thoughtto be irrelevant and difficult to transfer the learning to work environment. These formalprograms are also considered to follow the interest of the individuals who designed the trainingprogram, and do not consider preferences of the trainees (Akuratiyagamage, 2004a; Griffin,2003; Rees and Porter, 2005). Akuratiyagamage, 2004a believes that relying on a whether formal 22
  • 23. or informal process is not recommended, especially knowing that informal processes are notsufficient and also inefficient in how development and training is imparted to the employees asmanagers don‘t have the ability to convert the learning experience into on job decision-makingprocess. Formal management development though significant is not enough and not provided inthe correct manner. But this discussion doesn‘t mean that formal processes are better thaninformal processes or that informal processes are more natural and incidents, organisationsshould only depend on them and not make them part of management development. However,management development without informal process would make management development lessreal and more theoretical (Malcolm et al., 2003). As a result what seems to be appropriate wouldbe an integrated management development process which makes use of both kinds of processes.This incorporation would be in terms of several dimensions, time, environmental conditions, andcognitive capacity and manager‘s work routine (Lohman, 2006). Even at this point the success oreffectiveness of the integrated approach depends on organisational culture and climate, whetherit is conducive to development, and whether the organisation supports, encourages and nurtureslearning (Akuratiyagamage,2004, 2004b; Belling et al., 2004; Muhamad and Idris, 2005;Rodwell, 2005).Informal approaches to management development are related to eastern cultural values. Pauweeand Williams Observe:In the West we tend to emphasize formal assessment of individual strengths and weaknesseslinked to formal, often course based, development programs. In contrast in SE Asia topmanagers are much more personally involved in the development process of their chosensubordinates. They will each have their stable, as it were, of junior managers with whom there is 23
  • 24. a reciprocal supportive relationship. There is little formal assessment or development but ratherinformal development through mentoring, job rotation and project involvement.Therefore what is being observed is a trend towards using more informal approach a real-life,real-time development projects instead of more formalised pre-prepared learning which may notbe as effective.Isolated or integrated Management DevelopmentWhen one deals with HRD and management development the question arises whethermanagement development should remain an independent peripheral activity, or should it beintegrated with the organisation‘s strategic objectives? The major weakness as discussed earlieris when in a more traditional approach to management development; it is regarded as aninstrument which is a separate activity with little or no link with the strategic goal of anorganisation.When one discusses Human resource development, from the traditional paradigm thefundamental focus is on development activities and their connection at tactical level rather thanat a corporate or strategic level Saunders and Holdaway, 1992). HRD here becomes more of amarketing type philosophy with stress on contractual relationships (Stuart and Long, 1985a)where the line managers and other stakeholders are provided consultancy. In this paradigm linemanagers are considered to be customers as HRD is considered to be an independent activity andthere will be need to integrate horizontally, however most of what is taking place is being doneto use human resources in the best possible way (Fredericks and Stewart, 1996).The integrated paradigm is more concerned with an increasingly more popular theoreticalperspective of HRD which is related to its strategic importance (Garavan et al., 1995). Here as 24
  • 25. mentioned before there is a strong emphasis on a vertical integration between corporate goal andvertical integration. Strategic HRD is usually defined as development activities which areapplied to improve human resources in an organization, and is an important contributor tocorporate strategies. This is also regarded as learning organization perspective, particularly in alearning environment. In this approach there is proactive attempt at organisational change,therefore individual training and development changes into learning.There has been little or no evaluation of management development programs. Most of the time atthe end of program evaluations is carried out usually to measure levels of happiness. This occursbecause the program is carried out by HR or management development. These evaluations arenot very credible, they are also incapable of measuring actual changes in terms of learning,behaviour patterns during work and organisational performance (Kirkpatrick, 1976). Mostlyattempts to understand the impact of management development has been limited to surveys ofthose who are organising these programs like the HR people. The feedback from HR ormanagement development employees show that these programs are ineffective and employeescomplain about lack of information or even no connection with actual work (Jansen et al. 2001).Line Managers’ Perception of Management developmentOn the other hand the responses of line managers are quite different. According to Pauwee andWilliams (2001), their informal study showed that managers regard management development asadvertising. In their view they think that half of the amount invested in managementdevelopment is wasted. In addition they believe that MD is much more than theoreticalknowledge. It appears that line managers and many participants feel that the process of selectionfor management development plans would be just as important as the actual tutorial. Selection 25
  • 26. indicates to those who are selected that they are valued by the organisation, because it is willingto spend and incur cost to develop them. It is also indicative of the fact that organisation isforward thinking and they would be part of that future. It may also be considered as a benefit forthe services they have provided in the past. Management development also facilitates socialnetworking and in many cases a status symbol and help to career management.Therefore cutting costs and limiting management development can have a very adverse andundesirable impact even on the future of an organisation. It may indicate to the managers thatinstead of cultivating its own internal workforce, the organisation will be looking At the externalmarket for managers and this may have an impact on organisational culture, motivation levelsand promotions, to name a few.Therefore trick is to change the nature of management development programs and make themmore closely linked to the actual work of an organisation rather than cutting down the expense.Therefore the trend is to closely link learning programs with organisational objectives, Pauweeand Williams provide an example: ―whether the organization has enough good candidates to fillvacancies that may arise. Also subsequent links to individual career moves are being tracked.”Management Development and Transference to PracticeManagement development as an instrument of HRD involves activities which are pre-planned.They are designed to make changes ". . . and, as with all transformations, there is a core processinvolved" (Burgoyne and Stuart, 1976, p. 5, cited in Belling et al., 2004). This indicates thatlearning outcomes planned or unplanned and transfer material is part of it have to be set in theframework of core learning processes, which formed them in the first place(Burgoyne and Stuart,1976; Knowles et al., 1998 cited in Belling et al., 2004). These may appear to be confusing and 26
  • 27. even complicated but are important when one considers what managers learn and put intopractice on their jobs. And from the perspective of an organisation one has to consider how theycan facilitate them (Rouillier and Goldstein, 1991 cited in Belling et al., 2004). Transfer has beenexplained by Tannenbaum and Yuki (1992, p. 240 cited in Belling et al., 2004) as". . . The extent to which trainees effectively apply the knowledge, skills and attitudes gained in atraining context back to the job".Transfer is thus a process from a learning activity or program influence subsequent learning orperformance Marini and Genereux, (1995 cited in Belling et al., 2004). Though transference isnot quantifiable in terms of outcome which is usually implied, and it can be understood byrelating learning to the job context for an indefinite time period (Baldwin and Ford, 1988 cited inBelling et al., 2004). The observations relating to learning transference range from pessimisticwhen there is no transfer applied (Tannenbaum and Yukil, 1992; Haskell, 2001 cited in Bellinget al., 2004), to more positive views. These studies indicate that transfer process is not easy,however by pointing out the things which either help or obstruct learning and its application,hurdles can be dealt with at the same time beneficial factors can be optimised (Broad andNewstrom, 1992 cited in Belling et al., 2004).Previous studies have pointed out seven obstacles to transference from managementdevelopment to application in on job reality (Belling et al., 2004):  Lack of peer support  Lack of reinforcement back on the job,  Time and work pressures, 27
  • 28.  Lack of authority,  Perceived irrelevance of the programme  Lack of support from the organisation and  Group resistance to training  In the same way there are four supporting factors:  Job/role aids,  Reward;  Support, particularly from supervisors and peers  Opportunity to use learningIt should be pointed out that these obstacles and positive catalysts have not been evaluatedtogether, however essentially all researchers completely agree that these are the most importantbarriers or supporters that exist. When transfer process is considered there are some issues whichaffect each individual‘s transfer process experience these influences are: (Belling et al., 2004).  Personality and behaviour of individual learner  Workplace culture, environment and support system  Different aspects of learning experienceIt is usually assumed that all the trainees are influenced by the training in more or less the sameway, unless there is a criterion to differentiate the effects of these factors, like who is more 28
  • 29. affected and how one person responds differently than another (Williams and Lillibridge, 1992cited in Belling et al., 2004). Evidently organisational support cannot be targeted if it is notknown who needs help the most. (Knowles, 1998 cited in Belling et al., 2004).Different characteristics which may influence transfer especially in the case of managers can begrouped into a range of individual characteristics which may be involved in influencing transfer,particularly in relation to managers, may be roughly grouped into Belling et al., (2004):  Biographical and psychological essentials,  Personality and  Organisational elements, such as managerial experience and job satisfaction.In case of elements relating to organisations, of which the one researched is social supportparticularly in form of peer support (Huczynski and Lewis, 1980, Facteau, 1995 cited in Bellinget al., 2004). According to Belling et al., (2004):When programs are designed and delivered effectively and participants acquire learningoutcomes as a result, those who do apply their learning are not restricted to any particular kindof programme. All types of management and leadership development programmes, therefore, ifthey are designed and delivered appropriately, have the potential to enable participants to learnand transfer their learning back to their organisations.Management Development and Role of Top ManagementFor management development to be successful it is important for top management to becommitted to it. According to Hall (1984): 29
  • 30. Perhaps the most important factor in ensuring that MD is done strategically is the participationof top management in the process. Because top management is the strategic level of theorganisation, and because top management represents the strategic business planners of theorganisation, they should also be the human resource planners. Top management should involvein planning and executing MD” (p.176).Purcell (1995) states:―If top management does not support MD and if the financial control mode and short-terminvestment criterion dominates, there would be a trend to drive out long-term MD investmentand destroy the basis of MD as a part of the corporate strategy” (cited in Bratton and Gold,1999 p.50).Schuler (1987) observes:“Without top management support and commitment to MD the major focus of an organisation islikely to be on activities other than MD. This is particularly true when the focus is on short-termgoals and immediate results, which allows too little time to wait for the benefits of MD” (p.396).In a more recent study in Malaysia responsibility and support of leadership in managementdevelopment were emphasised Muhamad and Idris, 2005). At the same time the behaviour ofleadership with regards to management development can shape the level of participation fromHR managers, particularly in the strategy process (Devanna et al., 1984; Mumford, 1997). 30
  • 31. Top management has to create an organisational culture which displays their ideologies andmanagement style which support their policies and limitations (Bratton and Gold, 1999; Hendry,1995). Management development can be used as a way to show lower level management aboutacceptable behaviour. Moreover organisations‘ leadership can create a culture and value systemwhich would support their strategies and control. Management development can be used by theleadership to put forward their value system. According to Cisney:Neither a formal nor informal approach will be effective unless a favorable climate fordevelopment exists in the organization. The maximum development of the individual occurs onthe job through self-initiated activities.Therefore the job situation must provide opportunity and stimulation for the development ofpotentialities. The first essential of a favorable climate is active interest and participation on thepart of top management. Effective delegation of authority and responsibility throughout the lineorganization is also necessary to permit the exercise of individual initiative. Challenging,difficult, and varied work assignments are needed to extend the abilities and round out theexperience of the individual. These are some of the components of a climate which encouragesgrowth. Unless these ingredients are present or can be provided, there is little prospect forsuccess in management development. (2)ConclusionManagement development as a branch of HRM reveals that it has a functional and structuralassociation with different branches on HRM (Maclagan, 1992; Shefy and Sadler-Smith, 2006;Walton, 1999). According to Rodwell (1996) 31
  • 32. “…if MD operates as an isolated, solitary activity that is not linked with other organisationalinitiatives and policies, it often involves the so called „sheep dip‟ approach, where nothing elsehappens to reinforce MD and often expectations about the outcomes it achieves are limited togetting individuals to attend” (241).Management development is an all-inclusive and holistic way to allow, guide and organiselearning strategies and policies within an organisation (Megginson et al., 1993; Walton, 1999).This understanding is based on the assumption that management development is a businessoperation , therefore it should not be considered to have outcomes just at individual levels(Arthur, 1994; Burack et al. ,1997; Napier, 1996; Walton, 1999).Chapter 3: Research MethodsHuman resource management and human development is conducted within certain socialparadigms, the nature of human learning and subsequent performance cannot effectively benarrowed within quantitative analysis, especially by a student with limited knowledge andexperience. Therefore there is a need to carry out research which is more interpretive in nature.Within this paradigm interpretations are no absolute and answers are more indicative than fixed,no matter how much information and facts one tries to gather it is not necessary that all theinformation is exhaustive and in the real world just relying of facts limits the border of research.Qualitative research is a branch of research methods where the role of the investigator is moreactive compared to a quantitative survey (Muchinsky, 2003). Analysis is more related toquantitative relationships while interpretation is linked to qualitative methods. Because of thisthe process of interpreting data is not very clear-cut or explicit rather it quite vague (Patton, 32
  • 33. 2002). This particular research considers management development as an instrument of HRD andhow effectively it is being used as in the case of Unilever. This chapter discusses the theoretical viewbehind the choice of research and details the instruments used for this study.Qualitative ResearchSince 1970s qualitative research is being used because of its flexibility and viability in differentinterdisciplinary areas (Taylor & Bogdan, 1998). Qualitative studies allow researchers to broadentheir scope of study and have deeper understanding of their research topics (Lee, et al., 1999).Qualitative researchers are willing to go beyond the limiting parameters of quantitative analysisand the researcher is more personally involved with the research. Rather than just be an objectiveobserver. In organizational management setting quantitative research is preferred, howeverincreasingly more academicians and researchers are adopting qualitative research to betterunderstand the interrelationships and outcomes which may not be possible through quantitativestudies (Spector, 2005). This qualitative research relies on case study of Unilever Corporation. Thenext section discusses case study research.Case StudyThis particular research is a case study of Unilever Corporations one of the biggest FMCGmultinational corporations in the world, trying to understand how management developmentinfluences the HRD process and whether MD activity is translated into any competitiveadvantage or strategic gain for the company. Through case study researchers are able tounderstand different complicated interactions and issues. Case studies usually focus on a limitedset of events and conditions and there interrelationships. According to Robert Yin (1984) case 33
  • 34. study explores an occurrence within its real-life setting. In addition here several sets of evidenceare used and parameters between context and phenomenon are not very clearly defined. In termsof reliability some criticize its limited focus and question how a few cases cannot lead to ageneral finding. While others believe that case studies can only be used as exploratory studies.However case study method is being used successfully in different areas including socialsciences and business research.A major strong point of the case study method is that it entails use of several sources and practicein the information collecting method. The investigator establishes beforehand what data to gatherand what examination method to use with the information to respond to the research questions.Information gathered is typically mostly qualitative, as in this particular study but sometimes itmay also be quantitative. Instruments to gather information can comprise interviews, secondaryresearch or review of existing literature, observation, and gathering of physical objects. Thisparticular study relies on secondary research or existing literature on Unilever, specificallyrelated to HRD and MD. While a set of interviews carried out in Unilever China: Personal CareDivision were carried out in form of qualitative interviews of 10 managers and 2 of theirsuperiors.Research InstrumentsTo make the study more reliable and relatively broader so as to understand the generalunderstanding of MD in Unilever in general and its personal care division in China in particular,the researcher has chosen two instruments to achieve research objectives. 34
  • 35. Secondary ResearchThis particular instrument is compilation and interpretation of data that has already beencollected. For secondary research it is important to know the source of any information. This hasto be properly cited in text and also credited in bibliography. Secondary analysis is considered bythese researchers to be different from systematic review or Meta analysis or qualitative studieswhich aim to compile and understand information and analyse the information to reach aconclusion. According to Popay, et al (1998, 335), secondary research is different fromsystematic review because is carried out on specific type of studies, while secondary researchanalysis of combination of qualitative and quantitative datasets. Secondary data can be defined asall the information which may have been collected by different sources, researchers, governmentagencies for a purpose which is quite different from the study being conducted by this researcherfor example.Many academics have preferred growth of secondary analysis (Szabo and Strang 1997, Thorne1994). They advocate that this technique can be utilised to generate new information,propositions and additional confirmation of existing assumptions. It also lets researchers tosearch for new areas for empirical research and helps researchers to collect information aboutpopulations which may not be reachable without difficulty.It also has been found that for those individuals who are students like this researcher, secondaryresearch is much more suitable method (Szabo and Strang 1997). Thorne (1994) is of the opinionthat secondary analysis is not as basic as supposed and that it cannot be carried out separately.However this does not in any way stop use of primary data collection. Primary research isneeded in many instances to make the information become more convenient, that are withincertain limits. 35
  • 36. Secondary research is practical because in primary research in both quantitative and qualitativestudies, information is most of the time reliant upon the classification and perception of targetpopulation, pre-existing conditions and their answers, therefore secondary analysis is similar toprimary because at some level all the data and research whether primary or secondary isdependent on a researchers‘ research skills and abilities to interpret information and criticallyanalyse information both secondary and primary on the researcher‘s understanding.This researcher used a combination of on-line, academic and trade journals, company profile andreports and some books to understand corporate philosophy generally and more specifically theHRD process and MD initiatives in Unilever.In-depth InterviewsKvale (1996) has referred to interviews as ―favoured digging tool‖ in the area of social sciences.Interviewing in organisational location as in the case of this particular research, a researcher justneeds oral report from concerned people to find out about their work and differentinterrelationships and respondents perception about various aspects of their work and career.Interviews can vary from structured to semi structured to unstructured interviews. They can alsobe a combination of all three as a researcher works to find more detailed information aboutrespondents or their perceptions. In qualitative research interviewing is a flexible process. It‘snot done in isolation therefore it‘s like in-depth interviewing (Taylor & Bogdan, 1998).Therefore interviewing can be defined as face-to-face engagement which take place betweenresearchers and interviewees, so that the respondents‘ perspective and position on differentfeature of their lives, interactions and dissimilar situations are articulated directly. Detailedinterviews are essentially discussions between two individuals without any prescribed questionanswer format. Quantitative surveys have close-ended questions or multiple choice questions, in 36
  • 37. qualitative approach the researcher acts as a research instrument because the analysis is carriedout by him or her. He or she also decides how to put forward and phrase a question to getreliable information.Interviews are preferred in qualitative research because of the degree of flexibility offered, aseach interview has its own pace and speed. An outsider may consider interview as a simpleuncomplicated exercise. However an interview is packed with different standards andinterpretations that may not be obvious. Each interview may have some general similarities,there is the opening, where the interviewer gains entry and create the rapport and tone for whatfollows. This is followed by the core of the process that consists of questions and the creation ofthe probe. Finally, there is the conclusion, the wrap-up, where the interviewer and respondentstart a sense of closure. It is imperative to be conscious about who the respondent is and whatsort of questions will be inquired.Standardized Open-Ended Interview This is the most inflexible of all the interviews. The interviewer has to follow a rigorouspreset open-ended questionnaire. There is little or no flexibility in the wording or the order of thequestions. However in spite of fixed format and avoiding digression, it is still a qualitativeinterview as the responses are open-ended. This method is the most controlled and effective ofthe interviewing method, it is practical as it minimises partiality especially in the case ofinexperienced or less familiar of interviewers. This is also used when the purpose is to evaluateindividuals or their performance. This methodology is the best way if the interviewer has limitedtime and financial constraints. The most important disadvantage is that the interviewer has no 37
  • 38. space to satisfy the respondent and there is no guarantee that the questions posed can answer thequestions.Planning in-depth interviews Even though unstructured interviews are flexible, however it is important to plan andorganise the entire interviewing process, as it would lead to a more coherent execution andobjectives of the research are fulfilled. In this case the researcher is inexperienced and thus hasopted for standardised open-ended interviews and observations. Kvale (1996) below has listedthe seven stages of the basic framework of the research. 1. Thematizing In this particular study the detailed thematising has been outlined in the first chapter which not only explains the purpose of the study but also lists research objectives. 2. Designing For this instead of just relying on in-depth interviews the student has used two instruments. In addition the question1 3. Interviewing In this case the researcher has also taken into account attitude of the respondents and acted as an interviewer and an observer 4. Transcribing Since the interviews were carried out in Mandarin in China, the details of the interview are directly discussed in chapter 5. 5. Analyzing a more standardised approach was taken by this writer. Moreover, the researcher acted more as an interpreter than an analyst as the responses and observations were inferences.1 See Appendix II. 38
  • 39. 6. Verifying In this case the notes were discussed with the respondents to make sure that the interviewer‘s interpretations of the participant‘s response was correct and to keep the researcher‘s bias to the minimum 7. Reporting The researcher tried to minimise personal bias while reporting the interviews.Over a period of three weeks this researcher interviewed 10middle managers and 2 of theirsuperiors in the Personal Care Division of Unilever China in Shanghai. Each interview was onone-on-one basis and the researcher tried to keep her own personal bias at the minimum takingnoted and making observations.ReliabilityAccording to Stenbacka, (2001): “The concept of reliability is even misleading in qualitative research. If a qualitative study is discussed with reliability as a criterion, the consequence is rather that the study is no good” (p. 552)Personal in-depth interviews are based on the responses of the interviewees. And there is alwaysa possibility that the respondents‘ personal understanding might spoil the consistency of theresponses, keeping in mind the world-wide economic downturn and its impact on multinationalcorporations and their employees. In addition personal bias of the interviewer might have comeinto play but were unintended. In addition because of distance interviews were conductedpartially through telephonic conversations, consequently the impact of face-to face interviewswas reduced. 39
  • 40. ValidityValidity in qualitative is not a specific criterion. According to Winters 2000: ―Rather a contingent construct, inescapably grounded in the processes and intentions of particular research methodologies and projects” (p.1).As a result soundness of the dissertation principally depends on reliability of this researcher, herreputation and circumstances within which the responses are interpreted. In this research,through the entire planning, interviewing and compiling process, the interview has made it apoint to minimise any kind of issues which may jeopardise the validity of the report.Ethical IssuesIn order to keep this research morally acceptable, I made sure that the interviewees wereprepared and willing to be part of the research and consent was taken from the employers, inaddition they participated in their free time. In addition all the interviewees‘ names wereunspecified so that they can avoid any unfairness because of their responses. This interviewerhas also taken an undertaking that she will only reveal the details about their skill and theorganisation itself to the degree that they have approved. 40
  • 41. Chapter 4: Unilever HRD and MDStrategy---A Review of LiteratureUnilever Corporation was formed in 1930 by the merger of a Dutch margarine company andLever Brothers, a British soap manufacturer. Today it is one of the largest fast moving goodsmanufacturing concern with a presence in 150 different countries across the globe. Its mostfamous brands include Dove, Rexona, Lipton and Knorr to name a few. It has 174,000employees as of 2007 (Data Monitor, 2009).Human Resource development and motivation is increasingly essential for global corporations.In the case of Unilever it has positively measured behavioural resources for being successful inthe international competitive atmosphere; it has developed the skill model, the ―Leadership forGrowth Profile" (LGP), which has been executed worldwide. It has also shown that it workslocally in different regional markets, as a multi-local multinational company. One chief factor ofits HR policy is ‗Building an Enterprise Culture‘ which supports employees to have positiveoutlook using their attitude, enthusiasm, and inspiration. This culture is formed through arestructuring process, management development performance management, training and aneffective reward system (Human Resource Management International Digest, 2002). The recentHR strategy and subsequent MD strategy can be divided into 2 phases the first is from 1999-2005 Path to Growth Strategy. While the second phase is outsourcing of HR functions toAccenture to achieve more synergies. This Chapter looks at both phases of HR strategy inUnilever though there is limited information on the One Unilever strategy available in existingliterature because this chapter needed focus on Unilever‘s HRD and MD function materialavailable was limited. 41
  • 42. Management Development Philosophy in UnileverThere were two main objectives for management development: First to ensure growth of futureleaders internally, secondly to develop employees so that they can reach their full potential. Inthis case management development was not just making people move up the corporate ladder,rather it is to develop and cultivate expertise in a certain field. The organization indicated thatthe employees are very valuable and through putting themselves through rigorous training theywere willing to learn and were aware of new development. In addition cultivating future leadersmeant the organization was willing to invest in its employees for long term rather than justrecruiting new managers from outside. According to the Unilever philosophy a ―one-sided‖focus on the client and discounting the role of employees as major stakeholders will not lead togrowth in the organization in terms of performance growth, and in the long run might impactconsumers negatively too. When employees have the opportunity to develop themselves to theirpotential with consumer-oriented clear objectives then an organization is able to achieve strategicobjectives.Changes in Unilever’s HR Strategy and its MD Function 1999-2005 Path to Growth Strategy2The changes which occurred in 1999and the human resource experienced a restructuring ofphilosophy. In addition to the previous HR practices new one was introduced which were aimed2 This section is based upon Reitsma, (2001) 42
  • 43. at improving employee performance and providing an agenda for skill and ability development.All these systems were introduced globally. This is detailed in figure 1.Figure 1: Conflicting Objectives of Management Development (Reitsma, 2001).The figure reflects changes in Unilever‘s corporate strategy and its corresponding HR strategyfollowing are some of the changes that occurred are (Reitsma, 2001): 43
  • 44.  The organisational structure of organization changed and became, flatter, and the difference between each level was the degree of responsibility and decision-making power of the employee. Moving from one level to next would be an important move. And a real change for the managers. In addition the decision to evaluate performance before moving the managers upwards was critical, with the superiors relying on more objective performance outcomes. An analysis of different fields like marketing or finance etc. led the organization to create a framework for career growth patterns. This was done for training and also for the managers to plan their own development process so that it worked with the work level system. This encouraged professionalism and also created learning opportunities rather than just jumping from one level to another. A competencies dictionary was created which helped in performance evaluation, training choices and assessments. Those managers who showed consistent high performance and also those who displayed consistency in their performance were offered remuneration. This system in addition to the work level system allowed managers to work at the same level with additional perks and salaries, and were allowed to develop their skills without influencing their salaries. Target setting and target management became central to HR practices and the HR strategy‘s focus became more goals oriented. This was carried out at all managerial levels. And this limited practice which in the past was restricted to senior management was applied throughout the organization. Giving importance to individual employee and his or her wishes in terms of his or her personal growth, and the appraisal system changed from a backward-looking system to a 44
  • 45. more looking ahead system. And would have eventually led to more discussion oriented appraisals rather than a grading system.  Unilever wanted its employees to take active part in their development within the organization and according to Reitsma (2001) needed complete transparency in the practice of assessment and criteria used to evaluate employees.Unilever’s Management Development SystemFollowing are some of the factors which made Unilever‘s management development system asuccess:Joint ownership by corporation and employee: it is generally accepted that MD is a businessactivity, however in the case of Unilever; the responsibility is shared by the organisation andindividual worker. It is important to note that each individual is unique with different talents,limitations and preferences, therefore with an individual‘s input these factors also become part ofthe MD process. A paternalistic philosophy would not be helpful as it would not empower themanagers. The new empowering paradigm forced the corporation to give managers the tools toimprove their learning and understand. And to make sure that the system is able to incorporatepersonal development plans formed by the employees. Secondly the responsibility of MD is notjust the job of HR personnel; rather it is part of the overall corporate strategy of Unilever withthe executive board and chairman being part of the process. Thus it is the overall organizationwhich provided the MD system and also helped in bring out managers with promise, decided ontraining, and placement and kept the employees informed about the overall corporate goals. In 45
  • 46. addition the managers were always in the loop about their own position within the organizationand he or she was honest about his/her desires and expectations.MD principles applied to all: all managers had combined roles in their jobs:  They were responsible for their subordinates who reported to them  They were responsible to take steps for their own development.  Their bosses in turn supported them in their own developmentAs a result everybody had to follow the system as it was in the general interest of the managersto adhere to it. This was an interlinked system which became more efficient as it gained speed.Identification of potential high performance employees at all levels: identification ofleadership and other talents should not be done at senior management levels. At Unilever it startsat recruitment level, from which point individual hopes are discussed and assessment of theemployee‘s performance are made. This provides the employee an ideal position to start his orher career. At each level different managers and players change although the principles remainthe same from bottom till top. This system gives more opportunity to spot talent at the earliestpossible level, either for a specialised career or for a general career. As a result throughout anemployee‘s career targeted development takes place based on the overall assessment and theneeds and wishes of the manager, inducing him or her to reach their potential. In MD two majorplayers are involved, the direct superior who knows the manager and managers who are twolevels up. Senior management at this level are there to ensure a certain level of consistency ispresent within one SBU but also between different operating units within a group or even at 46
  • 47. international level. They are especially important in the case of international transfers, as theyhave the information and are in a position to assign tasks.Keeping overall interest of the Corporation over an operating company: for building one‘scareer there is a need to develop individuals in such a manner that they have exposure todifferent environments and processes, this builds in managers a depth which helps them copewith different situations, and at the same time having an in-depth view of a core function. Thismeans that individual employees go through lateral transfers and work in several differentoperations in their career, this is an overall loss for the operating company in the short run,however, in the long run it benefits the individual and the company as he or she may return at asenior post to the same operating unit in future and bring along a reservoir of experience whichwould not have been possible in the absence of lateral transfers through MD.One system: since Unilever is enormous even by multinational standards, therefore,management development in 90 different countries and across continents with internationaltransfers, the system is centralised, with a set of operating principles which guide the MD policyglobally. Therefore the entire system is seamless.MD and its integration with pay- system: management development and performancedevelopment of managers at Unilever is integrated with the remuneration package. Unilever isvery vocal in its preference for steep careers, which includes sustained high performance. Andhigh performance is reciprocated with a package which reflects the expectations of theorganisation.Transparency: a system which is designed in such a way that encourages high degree ofinvolvement from managers has to be transparent to be effective. Transparency works both ways 47
  • 48. as on one hand a manager needs to know what the organisation thinks about him and hispotential as a future leader, at the same the organisation should also know about the views andwishes of its managers. As a result positive synergies can help them to be realistic about theirgoals.Application of Management Development SystemThe above principles are important but there are some underlying major causes which need to beunderstood.Successful Career BuildingA successful career of any kind is based on consistently high performance, not just displayinghigh potential. It is based on:Professional ability: Unilever has created dictionary for 10 professions, these include,research and development, finance, HR, marketing etc. Different fields require different skills.Through these dictionaries job skills profiles are created, which help in matching individualperformance with what job expectations are. This ensures transparency and avoids confusion.And it can be carried out by the individuals themselves, which shows how strong the tool is.Competencies: professional abilities describe what the managers need to do while competenciesdescribe how it is done. The organisation has recognised a set of principles which are linked toexceptional performance. Competencies can be cultivated and Unilever has provided itsmanagers with a instructions which helps them with different competencies. These dictionariescan be applied globally and can even be accessed through the intranet. This allows managers todevelop their own skills. 48
  • 49. Experience: it is important for the managers to acquire skills and experience on different aspectsof work, and understand and can deal with a variety of random situations.Performance development planning (PDP)Performance development planning forms the very core of management development system.Once a year at least, a manager discusses issues with his or her superior, which goes beyondstandard performance appraisal. This planning and discussion leads to an individual‘sperformance and sets precedence for future development. The outcomes are then discussed andnoted down.Target setting and review: target setting is done for each individual manager, as these givefocus to the activities that a manager carries out and the objectives that he or she sets. Targetsare some priorities what are to be achieved within the regular job. Instead of end-goals they aresome dos of a job. Usually target setting and reviews occur at the start of a year.Performance Review: this is similar to performance appraisal, as it reviews last year‘sperformance and how it was achieved. In this review different areas of acitivity and behaviourare reviewed and those areas where skills and competencies are needed are pointed out. Thereare no performance categories; instead there is a discussion about realistic progress and what todo in future, rather than discussing the past.Skills and competencies development plan: based on the above review a small number ofcompetencies are identified which need to be improved in a period of a year to eighteen months.Usually about three to four areas are chosen. With this approach specific actions have to bedefined through which performance can be improved. Training is not the only option, other 49
  • 50. actions could be to join a project where certain ability or competency is needed and evenmentoring and coaching is discussed with peers and seniors. Throughout the period reviews aredone periodically to make sure that the development is taking place according to the plan. Whileplanning three things are kept in mind:  Manager‘s potential: individual manager‘s potential is measured in terms of professional skills acquired and competencies of the manager.  Experience: the broader the experience of the manager the higher the potential he or she has. And the better the competency to deal with different concurrent situations.  Manager‘s own wishes: are crucial for the PDP system and a clear and open discussion are needed and views are noted so that they don‘t get lost. His or her input allows the organisation to choose the right option for the individual.Unilever’s viewpoint: this part of PDP needs input of the organisation and how it views amanager‘s future place in the organisation. This is important because through this managersbuild realistic expectations about their role in the organisation. This is not secret; rather it isdiscussed with the individual. If the individual‘s goals are not in-line with the organisation‘sview then he or she may leave the corporation. Some of the managers have to stay in oneposition for a long time so that they can refine their learning; the role though is not stagnant as itevolves as the manager works on different cross-functional roles. In addition internationaltransfers mean additional exposure and opportunities to build skills and competencies. Thereforea three-four year period offers an ideal time to learn the most and deal with the consequences ofone‘s actions. 50
  • 51. The human resource planning meetings (HRPMs): After PDP discussion a human resourceplanning meeting takes place between different heads where internal operating company issuesare taken into account. Succession planning and organisational plans are created and career plansare reviewed for each business group especially for managers who are short listed as highpotential. These discussions at business group level ensured that individual development wasaligned with the overall corporate strategy.One Unilever Strategy 2005-Present: Outsourcing of HRFunctionsThe Path to Growth strategy completed its 5 year term in 2005. After 2005, the organisationbecame even leaner considering the global environment. It decided to outsource its HRmanagement function. In the One Unilever Strategy, a major feature has been to give theemployees necessary skills to ensure a successful business strategy. Unilever has invested inHRD and learning with the help of Accenture, the organisation has come up with a universalprogram for ―General Management and Leadership Skills‖ which also offers e-learning. Thiscapability has led to a new framework called ―Standards of Leadership‖. The program ensuresthat each individual manager takes the duty for overall corporate strategy. Unilever thus isdeveloping successful leaders (Human Resource Management International Digest, 2009).According to Bohmer, (2009) Unilever has become: Leaner, more effective organization, able todeliver products to market quickerHigh HR data quality to serve as the fundament for spot onbusiness decisions , cost management, cost reduction In the past roles were generalized, now HRhas specialized roles: HR BusinessPartners, HR Expertise Teams and HR Shared Services.Figure 2 shows how HR strategy has been transformed: 51
  • 52. HR BP role in the Operating Framework HR as it is nowHR as it was 5% HR TRANSFORMATION  Strategy 20 % Strategy  Performance Performance Enhancement Enhancement 55% 25%  Transactions 15% Transactions 30%  Admin 5% Administration 40 %HR Transformation HR vision: “To be leaders in how people drive business performance”Figure 2: HR BP Process Role in the Operating Frame Work (Bohmer, 2009) 52
  • 53. At present learning is a centralised process, there is a central group of providers, who deliverdifferent trainings, including, general, professional and leadership, both at plants and at varioushead offices world-wide. The most enthusiastic of staff take training activities within the firm.In the past there was a combination of in-house and professional development activities, but withthe new deal with Accenture, the business process outsourcing activity meant that Unilever,which could produce its own economies of scale doing HRD in house now sought to concentrateon its core marketing and selling its brand as it outsourced the non-value adding activities toAccenture. According to this action, short-term transactional activities like training delivery andtraining design were outsourced to Accenture, while strategic and transformational activities likelearning needs analysis, professional-skills training and most leadership and team developmentwere still part of Unilever‘s HRD (Human Resource Management International Digest, 2009).The roles out-sourced are (Bohmer, 2009):  Core HR  Payroll  Resourcing  Suppliers & Vendors  Learning  In-sourced Service  E-RewardAt this point according to Human Resource Management International Digest (2009), theorganisation understands the need to have intense interaction between internal and external HRDfunctions. Regular meetings take place that form the basis for a successful training relationshipwhich has be outsourced. At the same time Unilever has an overarching framework and 53
  • 54. guidelines to standardise and control Accenture programs at local, regional and global levels. Atthe same time Accenture is not to be regarded as the training centre. The objective is todifferentiate between internal and external development functions. At the same time it is notclear how training and development programs are assessed in terms of their value to the overallbusiness strategy, especially the role of Accenture staff. This will become more evident in future(Human Resource Management International Digest, 2009). Figure 3 shows the integration oftasks between Unilever and Accenture HR teams:Service Relationship Model: Service Mgmt roles fit with HR leadership Unilever Accenture „Unilever Team‟ VP Global HR Service Delivery Global Account Director Geographical Service Delivery Regional Account Directors Directors Service Delivery Manager Country/Cluster Country/Cluster Account Director Global HR Service Performance NN Director 54
  • 55. Figure 3: Service Relationship Model (Bohmer, 2009)What is important though is that core competencies training is still retained by Unilever, thismeans that Accenture doesn‘t have to have an in-depth understanding of its core values orinfrastructure. But at the same time there is need to integrate the internal and external functionsto make all activities more effective. Therefore there is need according to literature for greaterunderstanding and level of trust (Human Resource Management International Digest, 2009).ConclusionThis was an overview of the corporation‘s MD policy over the past ten years. The next chapterdetails the interviews carried out in the Skin Care Division of Unilever in Shanghai. 55
  • 56. Chapter 5: InterviewsTo make the inquiry into management development more specific in-line with the researchobjectives of this research, qualitative in-depth interviews3 were used as a research tool tounderstand the perception of 10 managers and their 2 superiors from Personal Care Division atUnilever China regarding management development and its effectiveness in this particularorganization. The interviews were carried out in a series of on-on-one interviews; some of themwere face-to-face, while others were carried out over the phone. All of the respondents wereChinese and the interviews were carried out in Mandarin. This chapter details the responses ofthe respondents. Since there were concerns about keeping identities of the respondents secret,they are given numbers in this discussionInterviews of 10 ManagersOf the 10 managers 8 had been working with the organization for 10 years or more, while twohad 5 years experience. Because of cultural differences with western social values, it was quitedifficult to draw out the managers and their responses seemed to be guarded yet honest.Manager #1According to manager # 1 there was a change occurring in the HR process in general andparticularly in the MD function. MD was still an internal function except for some formaltraining programs; informal development was still being carried out internally. MD wasnecessary he said because it helped him in identifying his own goals, while at the same time it3 See separate questionnaires for subordinates and their seniors in Appendix # 2 56
  • 57. integrated his own expectations with corporate objectives. In his view he was able to becomemore focused about his career and could see where he wanted to be within this organisation infuture. In his view formal training was not as helpful as mentoring and informal training. In thisrespondent‘s case according to him MD activities helped him tremendously in aligning his owncareer choice with that of Unilever. He said that MD as a function was very motivating and therewas positive impact. In his view there was not much significant change between the old and newpolicy as it wasn‘t as if there was a complete break. But the organisation was definitely payingmore attention to MD now than before.Manager # 2Manager # 2 was a relatively new to see the difference between old and new policies. MD ishelpful because according to him his able to identify what the organisation expects of him and heis also able to convey what his own expectations are. Communication and interactions withdifferent groups and preparedness for lateral transfers was something he gained whileundergoing development. He is aware of the corporate goals and he said that he was proud thathe could in his individual capacity to the overall corporate goals. He appeared to be quiteimpressed with the way HRD and more specifically MD functions were carried out. He saidthere was no confusion about what was expected of him therefore he knew what he had to do tobecome successful he believed he had improved his performance because of this. He had joinedthis organisation when Path to Growth was phasing out, but he thought One Unilever Strategywas more focused in strategic decision making. He said right now it was difficult to assess butwith global recession this was a good decision to have a leaner but more focused workforce. 57
  • 58. Manager # 3This manager believed that MD in form of informal training was the key to managementdevelopment. The new strategy of outsourcing was a visionary idea because this had helped evenin HR to focus on the core SHRM activities. He believed all MD activity was geared towardscorporate goals. In his view the help he got from his seniors in form of mentoring was the key tohis own growth, and because interlinking of subordinate and superior growth had also helped.He did not specify any specific competencies gained. He believed MD was the way to integrateindividual and corporate goals. His performance had been improving. From his understandingmanagers‘ development was now core activity of internal HRM. The new strategy was stillevolving and things would become clearer in future.Manager # 4Manager # 4 was a female manager who had been with the organisation for over 10 years. Shethought that there was not a significant break from the original philosophy, instead theorganisation had learned and implemented the changes to make MD more effective. MD in herview was necessary for internal recruitment and internal hiring. She believed that herecommunication with her peers and superiors had improved and she had become better informedabout what was expected of her. Corporate and individual goals were integrated further withMD. In her view performance was not directly affected rather there was an overall impact on herattitude. She agreed with the view that outsourcing was a good decision as now the core HRfunction was more strategically focused. She believed she had become more proactive because ofMD. 58
  • 59. Manager # 5Manager # 5 was of the opinion that there were some significant changes as there was nowgreater emphasis on performance development especially in MD. Management development inhis view is important because individual and corporate goals cannot be separated it is imperativefor them to be integrated both for strategic success and competitive advantage gained by theorganisation. In his view the SHRM strategy was transforming and evolving and all employeeswere in a win-win situation. He was not specific about competencies, but he thought that he hadstarted becoming more goal oriented. This he thought led to a significant improvement in hisperformance and he did get positive feedback from his superiors. He agreed with the view that infact outsourcing was a step in the right direction especially in management development. In thisview MD was now an integral part of any multi-national corporation‘s strategy.Manager # 6This manager was of the view that every few years there was a need to change managementstrategies to deal with the external environment and for any organisation to be successful it hadto be in-line with changing needs of managers. Management development was important toachieve strategic goals. But in his view formal programs were a waste of time, as opposed tomore informal in-house development as he believed it was more effective and centred thanformal external training. He thought that in fact it was informal training that had allowed him todevelop his potential. As he was able to recognise his own skills and competencies. He believedthat performance was now the focus of development programs, the need to improve performancewas the core of MD now, and this philosophy was different from previous objectives. 59
  • 60. Manager # 7Manager # 7 was a new recruit and had joined Unilever a year back. He said he was not sureabout the previous MD strategy but he was quite impressed with the new strategy. He thoughtthat MD was crucial for a manager‘s career growth. He said he had become more focused andconfident about his work and his interpersonal skills had developed significantly. In his viewintegration of corporate and individual objectives was important as this would indicate growth ofthe organisation and of the individual. He said it was too early to recognise changes in hisperformance, however, he said his performance was definitely improving. About the last 2questions he said he was relatively new to answer them.Manager # 8This manager was of the view that outsourcing was not a good idea. In his opinion allowingother organisations to deal with HR transactional activities would not increase the focus buteverything would largely depend on the integration of internal and outsourcing functions. MDwas important as it allowed an individual to grow with an organisation and increased a sense ofloyalty. In over ten years he said now he knew that the right attitude and positive steps werenecessary to progress in this organisation. He said that Path to Growth very successfullyintegrated individual and corporate objectives. There was a definite improvement in performancebecause of MD. MD may have become focused but he was not very enthusiastic aboutoutsourcing.Manager # 9This manger was another female working in a male dominated office. She seemed driven andbelieved that there were changes occurring because of outsourcing. She was a vocal supporter of 60
  • 61. outsourcing. In her view because of economic slowdown and leaner organisations, it wasnecessary to use external contractors for peripheral processes which were not directly linked withcore processes. In her view MD played an important role and was responsible not only fordeveloping managers but also helped in fulfilling long-term strategic objectives. She said she hadlearned to work in teams and to improve her interpersonal skills as well as she had found outabout skills which she had not recognised. Integration of individual and corporate goals wasquite successful because it had led to reduction in divergence. In her view MD was key toimproving one‘s performance as it gave an individual opportunity to improve his or her skills.MD was definitely more focused. Moreover because of MD she could show her potential andmove upwards in the organisation.Manager # 10The last manger to be interviewed was also of the view that there was not much differencevisible except for in formal training programs. In his view formal MD plans had become morefocused especially in terms of formal programs. He believed that MD was important but wasonly valid in the Long-run and in terms of career development of those individuals who wouldlike to have career in one organisation. He had gained a lot in terms of how he could proactivelydeal with different issues concurrently. MD he thought was the key to integrating individual andorganisational goals, especially in Path to Growth strategy, however it was too early to see itsimpact with regards to One Unilever policy. He felt that his performance had improvedsignificantly. He agreed that MD was now more focused on individual employee and this wasbecause both Accenture and internal HRD were tackling different areas. He was of the view thatMD had become more strategic in its objectives. 61
  • 62. Interviews of 2 SuperiorsThe pre-set questions aimed at the two superiors were a bit different because they were designedto understand the perception and opinions of the superiors, especially in terms of how they sawtheir subordinates dealing with different types of MD activities and what their responses were. Inaddition, they were framed to understand the significance of these activities and the responses ofthe managers working under them. Each superior had a group of 5 managers reporting to him.Superior # 1According to Superior # 1 there were changes in MD because of the new HR policy with moreHR functions being performed by Accenture, however since MD was part of the SHRMtherefore then difference was in terms of greater focus on individual manager‘s developmentwithin the organisation. The senior thought that MD was fundamental tool by which higher levelpromotions can take place and it was through both informal and formal development techniquesthat he himself had been able to move up the corporate ladder and he saw others doing itthemselves. In his own case his subordinate became more responsible, focused and also theircommunication skills had improved significantly. In addition since they were responsible forchalking out their own development therefore they were also more responsible about theoutcomes. He thought MD was very important for integrating corporate and individualobjectives. In terms of performance he believed it had improved significantly and had a positiveimpact on overall performance of his subordinates. He responded in affirmative to the questionabout the effect of outsourcing on MD. MD was now concentrating on refining different skillsand abilities of individual mangers and he though the role of informal training was moreimportant than formal development activities. 62
  • 63. Superior # 2In the opinion of the second superior there was a definite change in the way HR policy wasbeing pursued by the new policy. He believed that external forces had induced Unilever tooutsource its peripheral HR activities so that core processes were kept in focus. He saw hissubordinated becoming more confident, proactive and goal oriented. They had also become moreaware about their own career goals and milestones. Each individual was a stakeholder in theorganisation and thus his or her improvement and contribution had led to achieving of differentcorporate goals. He thought that MD was one of the reasons why recently there was greatercoherence and convergence in individual and corporate objectives. He said he had witnessed thegrowth of individuals and their ability to deliver different objectives had improved, thus therewas a marked difference in their performance. He was all in favour of outsourcing oftransactional activities of HR as it was the need especially because of global economicslowdown. The changes he said were subtle and did not appear over-night but they wereparticularly visible in the attitude and behaviour of the subordinates, as it showed increase inself-esteem and higher motivation levels.ConclusionNext Chapter discusses MD at Unilever in light of existing literature and the responses ofmangers especially in terms of the changes occurring within the organisation. 63
  • 64. Chapter 6: DiscussionDiscussion and AnalysisChapter 4 and chapter 5 have discussed HRD policy of Unilever, the former being a general viewof organisational philosophy and implementation. While the latter a portrayal of the perceptionof some middle level managers and their superiors working for Unilever China in Shanghai. Ageneral picture has emerged from the two chapters and an in-depth look at the managementdevelopment at Unilever especially with a framework provided in the second chapter in terms ofexisting literature on MD.It is important to first acknowledge that MD is the cornerstone of HRD especially in terms ofinternal recruitment, development of managers and recognising potential. In the past ten yearstwo major strategies have been adopted, first a five year plan Paths to growth strategy followedby a significantly different approach which has led to outsourcing of some fundamental HRfunctions. However it is important to understand that strategic aspects of HRD are still internalfunctions. At the same time the researcher was unable to find out how much One Unileverstrategy is a complete break from its predecessor especially in its objectives. At the same time itappears that the new policy is considerably different because it has led to a leaner and efficientway of conducting business and managing human resources. Interviews have also failed to shedlight on whether there is any difference between them. The interviewees were hesitant whenspecific answers were required. This may be because of cultural values, and also there was aguarded response from the respondents. But it is evident that MD is an important function forthe organisation and it relies on it as a tool of SHRM. Following sections will try to interpret theresponses within the framework of background information of MD strategy at Unilever. 64
  • 65. Major Changes in HR PolicySince there was limited information available about the new MD strategy the researcher relied onthe responses of the managers and their superiors. According to most mangers and both thesuperiors there was a significant different between the two HR policies. However some of themfelt that it was essentially just a continuation of the old policy, while newer recruits didn‘t knowthe differences. It appears that there are some changes but right now it is too early to say in detailhow they differ. Those who believed that there was a change in HR policy had a positiveattitude towards the new policy.Role of MD in Individual’s DevelopmentThere was an array of views about the role of MD. All participants believed that MD wasessential however there was a wide ranging response as perceived by each individual. Some ofthe views of managers and superiors are:  Goal identification and focus  Transparency  Focus on core SHRM  Internal recruitment  Strategic goal integration of individual and corporation  Career growth  Loyalty  Proactive approach by managers  Increase in confidence 65
  • 66. Competencies AcquiredIn terms of competencies gained, there was again a varied response from the participants, exceptfor two who were not very specific, most of the managers believed that it improved interpersonalskills and communication. Some thought it made them more focused and goal oriented. Whileother had been able to recognise their own abilities because of MD. The two superiors weremore specific and felt that they not only became more responsible to the organisation but tothemselves. One of them also pointed out the importance of mentoring which was notrecognised by any of the mangers. Largely the competencies pointed out were quite broad. Thisresearcher felt that the respondents were not very comfortable giving details of competencies.Integration of Corporate and Individual GoalsAll of the respondents agreed on the idea that MD was a tool which helped the corporation andthe individual to integrate their goals. It was through MD that an individual manger was able tounderstand his or her position in relation to overall organisational development.Influence on PerformanceIn terms of performance there was an overwhelming reponse. All of the respondents believedthat MD had helped them in improving their performance. In addition it had also helpedimprove their motivation levels which had influenced their performance. It was generallybelieved that MD‘s actual impact could be witnessed by superiors in the form of enhancedperformance and that was now the focus of new Unilever policy.Impact of OutsourcingGenerally most of the respondents appreciated the philosophy behind outsourcing; however mostof them also felt that it was too early to assess its significance. There was only one respondent 66
  • 67. who was vocally opposed to outsourcing though he admitted that he had witnessed some positivechanges. The superiors felt that on one hand the changes were subtle but already some positivechanges were being felt in the subordinates. While the role of internal development and amentor was also highlighted. MD was now recognised as the focal point of the core HR strategywhich was managed by Unilever. In terms of specific changes most of them believed that it wastoo early to comprehend any specific changes at this point.ConclusionThe above discussion has taken an-in-depth look at the general existing view of Unilever interms of MD and has also tried to interpret interviews and translate them into coherent answersto the research questions identified in the first chapter. The final chapter takes a brief overviewof the research and gives the findings of the report with implications for HRD. It also lists somelimitations of this study.Chapter 7: Findings and ConclusionOverviewThis dissertation has sought to understand management development as an instrument used bymultinational corporations as a strategic function, a way of internal recruitment and successionand to gain competitive advantage. This study used the case study method to see how MD isregarded and implemented in one of the truly global organisations Unilever. For this a review ofexisting literature was done, which provided fundamental understanding of managementdevelopment as a theoretical concept as well as its application and results in terms of individual 67
  • 68. growth and strategic outcomes. Qualitative study of Unilever using both secondary research andin-depth interviews provided a clear picture of MD within the organisation. At this point theimportance of Secondary research was crucial because of guarded responses from therespondents. Anticipating cultural refrain, this researcher had decided to use secondary researchto reinforce the responses in the interview. This chapter first details the findings, followed byimplications in human resource management and strategic management. It concludes thedissertation with limitations and a importance of further research.FindingsFrom the discussion and interpretation carried out in the preceding chapter following are somemajor findings:  In the past ten years MD has become a key function of HRD as the organization has recognized the importance of MD as a strategic tool and also because it allows it to develop potential talent to fulfill its strategic objectives.  In the past ten years there have been significant changes. First Path to Growth strategy tried to align individual and organizational goals. It also used management development to enhance employee development and participation. One Unilever on the other hand has been able to outsource most of the transactional functions of HR, this has led to a greater focus on MD and developing Strategic competencies within the HR.  From both secondary and primary research both formal and informal methods were used for MD in both the policies. Role of mangers in determining their own growth was highlighted in Path to Growth, while in One Unilever performance was now the key focus of the new HR strategy. 68
  • 69.  In terms of competencies several have been identified, however it appears that interpersonal communication was an important competency, while mangers become more responsible and goal oriented. This was observed by the mangers and their superiors.  With time and impact of external environment MD has become increasingly important as all of the respondents consider it the key to their personal success and also as a driver for performance and growth within the organization.  In case of outsourcing of peripheral HR functions to Accenture, most of the respondents were of the view that it was too early to understand the implications.Implications for Human Resource Management andDevelopmentIn a global competitive environment especially with economic downturns and leanerorganisations, it is becoming imperative for organisations to strategically plan their humanresource functions in such a way that the organization can compete successfully in an evershrinking world. This research has shown how Unilever the leading consumer goods companyhas incorporate MD as part of its strategic philosophy to gain competitive advantage and also tomake its managers a part of the strategy. As they have realised the importance of its managersand employees and their contribution to the company‘s growth. This indicates that role of MD isgoing to increase as an instrument of HRD. In addition, from international point of view Chinabeing the biggest market of consumer product has provided an excellent example of howinternational operations have to be dealt at local level. Since this researcher in spite of herChinese background felt that some questions were not answered as explicitly as needed. In termsof performance, MD was considered to be an important driver and according to all the 69
  • 70. respondents it was perceived to be help in performance. it appears from the findings anddiscussion that MD not only effectively enhances competencies, it also leads to betterperformance.LimitationsThere are several limitations associated with this research. This study was carried out withlimited finances, it was also had time constraints which gave this researcher limited time to carryout the entire research. Secondly since the primary research was carried out in China andMandarin was used for the interviews there will be a margin of errors due to translationproblems. This researcher is a student therefore this was her first effort at a formal researchreport she had no expertise in conducting the research. This report was a very limited in its scopetherefore it‘s by no means exhaustive.Further ResearchHuman resource management is an important part of the overall business strategy and its iscontinuously growing in importance especially in strategic planning. This report is a limitedendeavour, and reflects the perceptions of employees. There is a need to explore the context ofMD further and to interpret the impact of new Unilever outsourcing policy, because it can helpother organisations with their MD processes. 70
  • 71. Appendices 71
  • 72. Appendix I: References Anonymous. (2009). Unilevers sound outsourcing strategy, Human Resource Management International Digest, 17(1), 9-11. [Online] last Accessed on 11/11/2009: http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/09670730910929369 Anonymous. (2002). ―Unilevers team game meets key goals‖. Human Resource Management International Digest. Vol. 10, No. 1; pp. 18-20 Akuratiyagamage, V M (2007) An Integrated Approach to Management Development: A Framework for Practice and Research, VISION—The Journal of Business Perspective Vol. 11 No. 4; pp. 1-11. Akuratiyagmage, V. M. (2004), ―Management Development: The Total Process Embracing Informal and Formal Processes,‖ Management and Change, Vol. 8. No. 1/2, pp.31- 48. 72
  • 73. Arthur, J. B. (1994), ―Effects of Human Resource Systems on ManufacturingPerformance and Turnover,‖ Academy of Management Journal, Vol. 37 No.3, pp. 670 –687.Baldwin, T.T, Patgett, M.Y (1994), "Management development: a review andcommentary", in Cooper, C.L, Robertson, I.T (Eds),Key Reviews in ManagerialPsychology, Wiley, New York, NY, pp.270-320.Beer, M. and Walton, A.E. (1987), ―Organisation Change and Development,‖ AnnualReview of Psychology, Vol. 38, pp.339 -67.Belling, R., James, K. and Ladkin, D. (2004), ―Back to the Workplace: HowOrganisations Can Improve their Support for Management Learning and Development,‖Journal of Management Development, Vol. 23 No. 3, pp.234-255. Accessed fromEmerald:http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/02621710410524104Bender, J. M., Urban, T. F., Galang, M. C., Frink, D. D. and Ferris, G. R. (1996),Developing Human Resources Professionals at ARCO Oil and Gas Company in G. R.Ferris and R. Buckley (eds.), Human Resource Management: Perspectives, Context,Functions, and Outcomes, Prentice-Hall, Inc, New Jersey.Bratton, J., and Gold, J. (1999), Human Resource Management: Theory and Practice,Macmillan, London.Bagshaw, M. (1996), ―Creating Employability: How Can Training and DevelopmentSquare the Circle Between Individual and Corporate Interest?,‖ Industrial andCommercial Training, Vol. 28 No. 1, pp.16 -18. 73
  • 74. Bohmer, H. (2009). HR Transformation—The Unilever Company. MRH Congress„Tuning HR―. [Online] last Accessed on 11/11/2009:http://www.mrh.be/montreux09/fr/imagesplus/pdf/5_hr_transformation.pdfBurack, E. H., Hochwarter, W., and Mathys, N. J. (1997), ―The New ManagementDevelopment Paradigm,‖ Human Resource Planning, Vol. 20 No.1, pp.14 – 22.Cisney, H N (1956). Appraisal and inventory in management development. Journal ofEducational Sociology, 30: 2-11.Data Monitor. (2009). Unilever: Company Profile.Delaney, J. T. and Huselid, M. A. (1996), ―The Impact of Human Resource ManagementPractices on Perceptions of Organisational Performance,‖ Academy of ManagementJournal, Vol. 39 No. 4, pp.949-969.Devanna, M. A., Fombrun, C. J., and Tichy, N. M. (1984), ―A Framework for StrategicHuman Resource Management‖ in C. J. Fombrun, M. A. Devanna and N. M. Tichy(eds.), Strategic Human Resource Management, John Wiley and Sons, New York.De Simone, R.L., Werner, J.M., and Harris, D.M. (2002), Human Resource Development,(3rd ed.), Harcourt College Publishers, Fort Worth, TX.Doorewaard, H and Benschop, Y. (2003), ―HRM and Organisational Change: AnEmotional Endeavour,‖ Journal of Organisational Change Management, Vol. 16. No. 3,pp.272-286.Drucker, P. (1999), Management Challenges for the 21st Century, Harper Business, NewYork, NY. 74
  • 75. Elkjaer, B. (2001). ‗The Learning Organisation: An Undelivered Promise,‖ ManagementLearning, Vol. 32.No. 4, pp.437-53.Fombrun, C. J. (1984), ―Corporate Culture and Competitive Strategy‖ in C. J. Fombrun,M. A. Devanna and N. M. Tichy (eds.) Strategic Human Resource Management, JohnWiley and Sons, New York.Fores, M, Sorge, A. (1981), "The decline of the management ethic", Journal of GeneralManagement,. Vol. 6 No.3, pp.36-50.Francis, H. (2003), ―HRM and the Beginnings of Organisational Change,‖ Journal ofOrganisational Change Management, Vol. No. 16. 3, pp.309 – 327.Fulmer, R., Gibbs, P., Goldsmith, M. (2000), ―Developing Leaders: How WinningCompanies Keep on Winning,‖ Sloan Management Review, Fall, pp.49 – 59.Garavan, T.N., Heraty, N., and Barnicle, B. (1999), ―HumanResource DevelopmentLiterature: Current Issues, Priorities and Dilemmas,‖ Journal of European IndustrialTraining, Vol. 23.No. 4, pp.169-179.Garavan, T.N., Costine, P. and Heraty, N. (1995), "The emergence of strategic HRD",Journal of European Industrial Training, Vol. 19 No. 10, p. 470.Grey, C. and Antonacopoulou, E. (2007), Essential Readings in Management Learning,Thousand Oaks, Sage Publications,CA.Griffin, N.S. (2003), ―Personalise Your Management Development,‖ Harvard BusinessReview, 79.4, pp. 98 – 107.Hall, D. T. (1984), Human Resource Development and Organisational Effectiveness in C.J. Fombrun, M. A. 75
  • 76. Hendry, C. (1995), Human Resource Management: A Strategic Approach to Employment,Butterworth-Heinemann Ltd, London.Holden, R.J. and Hamblett, J. (1998), ―Learning Lessons from Non-Work RelatedLearning,‖ Journal of Workplace Learning, Vo.10 No. 5, pp.241 – 250.Horwitz, F M (1999) ―The emergence of strategic training and development: the currentstate of play‖, Journal of European Industrial Training. Vol. 23, No. 4/5; pp. 180-190.[Online] Accessed from Emerald:http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/03090599910272068Järvinen, A. and Poikela, E. (2001), “Modelling Reflective and Contextual Learning atWork,‖ Journal of Workplace Learning, Vol.13, pp.282 – 290.Jordan, N (1968), Themes in Speculative Psychology, Tavistock, London., .Kim, N.(2005), ―Organisational Interventions Influencing Employee Career DevelopmentPreferred by Different Career Success Orientations,‖ International Journal of Trainingand Development, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp.47 – 61.Kirkbride, P. S. (2003), ―Management Development: in Search of a New Role,‖ Journalof Management Development, Vol. 22 No. 2, pp.171- 180.Kirkpatrick, D (1976), "Evaluation of training", in Craig, R, Bittel, L (Eds),Training andDevelopment Handbook, McGraw Hill, New York, NY, pp.261-70.Kvale, S. (1996). Inter Views: An introduction to qualitative research interviewing. Sage,Thousand Oaks, CA. 76
  • 77. Lee, T. W., Mitchell, T. R., & Sablynski, C. J. (1999). Qualitative research inorganizational and vocational psychology, 1979-1999. Journal of Vocational Behavior,55, 161-187.Luoma, M. (2005), ―Managers‘ Perceptions of the Strategic Role of ManagementDevelopment,‖ Journal of Management Development, Vol. 24 No. 7, pp.645 – 655.Lyles, M. A. and Salk, J. E. (1996), ―Knowledge Acquisition from Foreign Parents inInternational Joint Ventures: An Empirical Examination in the Hungarian Context,‖Journal of International Business Studies, Vol. 27 No.5, pp.877-904.Lohman, M.C. (2006), ―Factors Influencing Teachers‘ Engagement in Informal LearningActivities,‖ Journal of Workplace Learning, Vol.18 No. 3, pp.141- 156.Longenecker, C.O. and Ariss, S.S. (2002), ―Creating Competitive Advantage throughEffective Management Education,‖Journal of Management Development, Vol. 21 No. 9,pp.640 – 654.Longenecker, C.O., Fink, L.S. (2001). Improving Management Performance inRapidly Changing Organizations. Journal of Management Development, Vol. 20 No. 1,7-18.Maclagan, P. (1992), ―Management Development and Business Ethics: A View from theU.K.,‖ Journal of Business Ethics, Vol. 11 No. 4, pp.321 - 329.Malcolm, J, Hodkinson, P, and Colley, H. (2003), ―The Interrelationships betweenInformal and Formal Learning,‖ Journal of Workplace Learning, Vol. 15, pp.313 - 318. 77
  • 78. Marsick, V. L., and Watkins, K. E. (1997), ―Lessons from Informal and IncidentalLearning‖ in J. Burgoyne and M. Reynolds (eds.), Management Learning: IntegratingPerspectives in Theory and Practice, Sage Publications, London.McCall, M.W. (1978), "Technical report number 9", Studies of Managerial Work: Resultsand Methods, Centre for Creative Leadership, Greensboro, NC, .McCall, M., Lombardo, M., Morrison, A. (1988), The Lessons of Experience: HowSuccessful Executives Develop on the Job, Lexington Books, New York, NY.,Miller, P. (1991), "A strategic look at management development", PersonnelManagement, August, pp.45-7.Mintzberg, H. (1973), The Nature of Managerial Work, Harper and Row, New York, NY.Muchinsky, P. M. (2003), Psychology applied to work (7th ed.). Thomson Wadsworth,Belmont, CA.Patton, M. Q. (2002), Qualitative evaluation and research methods (3rd ed.). SagePublications, Inc Thousand Oaks, CA.Patton, M. Q. (1980). Qualitative evaluation methods. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage.Paauwe, J., Williams, R. (2001), "Seven key issues for management development",Journal of Management Development, Vol. 20 No.2, pp.90-105. Accessed from Emerald:http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/02621710110365014Pickering, J.W., Matson, R. (1992), "Why executive development programs (alone) don‘twork", Training & Development, Vol. 46 No. 5, pp. 91-5. 78
  • 79. Muhamad, M and Idris, K. (2005), ―Workplace Learning in Malaysia: The Learner‘sPerspective,‖ International Journal of Training and Development, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 62-78.Popay, J., Rogers, A., Williams, G. (1998) Rationale and standards for the systematicreview of qualitative literature in health services research, Qualitative Health Research,vol. 8 No. 3: 329-40.Mumford, A. (1997), ―Management Development: Strategies for Action,‖ IPM, London.Napier, N.K. (1996), Strategy, Human Resources Management and OrganisationalOutcomes: Coming from Between the Cracks in G. R. Ferris and M. R. Buckley (eds.),Human Resource Management: Perspectives, Context, Functions, and Outcomes,Prentice-Hall, Inc, New Jersey.Rausch, E., Sherman, H. and Washbush, J. B. (2002), ―Defining and AssessingCompetencies for Competency-based, Outcome-focused Management Development,‖Journal of Management Development, Vol. 21 No. 3, pp.184-200.Rees, W.D. and Porter, C. (2005), ―Results of a Survey into How People BecomeManagers and the Management Development Implications,‖ Industrial and CommercialTraining, Vol. 37 No. 5, pp.252-258.Reitsma, S.G. (2001). Management development in Unilever, Journal of ManagementDevelopment 20(2), pp. 131-144. [Online] last Accessed on 11/11/2009:http://www.emeraldinsight.com/10.1108/02621710110382150 79
  • 80. Rodwell, J.J. (2005), ―The Assessment of Formal Management Development: A Method,a Baseline and the Need to Incorporate Learning Styles,‖ Journal of ManagementDevelopment, Vol.24 No. 3, pp.239-252.Saunders, M. and Holdaway, K. (1992), The In-House Trainer as Consultant, KoganPage, London.Schuler, R.S. (1987), Personnel and Human Resource Management, (3rd ed.), WestPublishing Co, St. Paul.Senge, P. (1990), The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization,Doubleday/Currency, New York, NY.Shefy, E and Sadler-Smith, E. (2006), ―Applying Holistic Principles in ManagementDevelopment,‖ Journal of Management Development, Vol. 25 No. 4, pp.368 -385.Simmonds, D., and Pedersen, C. (2006), ―HRD: The Shapes and Things to Come,‖Journal of Workplace Learning, Vol. 18 No. 2, pp.122 -135.Spector, P. E. (2005). Industrial & organizational psychology: Research and Practice(3rd ed.). John Wiley & Sons, Inc, New York.Stenbacka, C. (2001), ―Qualitative research requires quality concepts of its own.‖Management Decision, Vol. 39, No.7, pp. 551-555.Stewart, R. (1968), "Management education and our knowledge of management jobs",International Social Science Journal, Vol. 20 pp.77-89.Storey, J. and Sisson, K. (1993), Managing Human Resources and Industrial Relations,Open University Press, Buckingham. 80
  • 81. Storey, J., Mabey, C., Thomson, A. (1997), "What a difference a decade makes", PeopleManagement, Vol. 12, pp. 28-30.Stuart, R. and Long, G. (1985), "Towards marketing the training function, part 2: makingmarketing decisions", Personnel Review, Vol. 14 No. 3, pp. 29-32.Sun, J. (2000), Organisation Development and Change in Chinese State-ownedEnterprises: A Human Resource Perspective,‖ Leadership and OrganisationDevelopment Journal, Vol. 21 No. 8, pp.379.Swanson, R.A. and Holton, E.F. (2001), Foundations of Human Resource Development,Berrett-Koehler, San Francisco, CA.Szabo, V. and Strang, V.R. (1997) Secondary analysis of qualitative data, Advances inNursing Science, vol. 20(2): 66-74.Taylor, S. J., & Bogdan, R. (1998), Introduction to qualitative research methods (3rded.). John Wiley & Sons, Inc, New York.Thorne, S. (1990) Secondary Analysis in Qualitative Research: issues and implicationsin Morse, J.M. (Ed.) Critical Issues in Qualitative Research Methods. London: Sage.Tichy, N. (2002), The Leadership Engine: How Winning Companies Build Leaders atEvery Level, Harper Collins, New York.Ulrich, D., and Lake, D. (1990), Organisational Capability: Competing From theInside/Out, John Wiley, New York.Ulrich, D. (1998), "Intellectual capital = competence x commitment", Sloan ManagementReview, Vol. 39 No. 2, pp.15-26.Walton, J. (1999), Strategic Human Resource Development, Prentice Hall, England. 81
  • 82. Megginson, D., Joy-Matthews, J., and Ba, P. (1993), Human Resource Development, Kogan Page, London. Winter, G. (2000). A comparative discussion of the notion of validity in qualitative and quantitative research. The Qualitative Report, Vol.4, No. 3and 4. Retrieved November 27, 2009, from, http://www.nova.edu/ssss/QR/QR4-3/winter.html Winterton, J., Winterton, R. (1997), "Does management development add value?", British Journal of Management, Vol. 8 pp.565-576. Worrall, L. and Cooper, C. (2001), "Management skills development: a perspective on current issues and setting the future agenda". Leadership B Organization Development Journal, Vol. 22 No. 1, pp. 34-9. Wright, P.M. and Ferris, G.R. (1996), Human Resource Management: Past, Present, and Future, in G. R. Ferris and M. R. Buckley (eds.), Human Resource Management: Perspectives, Context, Functions, and Outcomes, Prentice-Hall, New Jersey. Yin, R. K. (1984). Case study research: Design and methods. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.Appendix II: Questions for InterviewsQuestionnaire for Managers  Do you see any major changes occurring in MD because of new HR Policy especially with outsourcing of HR functions?  How do you think MD helps in your development and how does it fulfil Unilever‘s strategic objectives? 82
  • 83.  Specifically what major competencies were gained by you in different formal and informal MD programs?  How successful was this exercise in integrating corporate and individual objectives?  How was your performance influenced in MD?  Has outsourcing transactional HR activity made MD more focused, how?  What specific changes do you see because of MD?Questionnaire for Superiors  Do you see any major changes occurring in MD because of new HR Policy?  How do you think MD helps in your subordinate‘s development and how does it fulfill Unilever‘s strategic objectives?  Specifically what major competencies were gained by your subordinate in different formal and informal MD programs?  How successful was this exercise in integrating corporate and individual objectives?  How was the performance of your managers affected by MD programs?  Has outsourcing transactional HR activity made MD more focused?  What specific changes do you see because of MD? 83