Do any of these questions sound familiar?
It is our belief that a lot of what we need to address the situations we encounter and achieve desired outcomes are available to us. The task before us often is whether we have the knowledge to ask the right questions that frame the situation in ways that activate the right skills to act and if so, do we possess the skills to perform the actions required.
Over the years of working with various organisations across profit and non-profits, we have encountered a few common questions that we know can be effectively addressed if the need is framed correctly and the actions are executed with adequate proficiency. Some of these questions are shared below:
We've embarked on a new (customer-centric) strategy and the current training and development structure is unsuitable to support it and needs to be revamped. Where to I start?
This question is really about culture change – the goal is to effect a change in the consistent patterns of behaviour of the people in the organisation. Sometimes organisations define or focus their customer centricity efforts on behaviour change in the frontline, customer-facing roles only while other organizations recognise that customer-centricity is an organisation-wide change. Regardless of which approach is adopted, the primary goal is a change in behaviour. In our framework, we approach this by identifying individuals and teams whose roles are pivotal to enabling this behaviour change and eventual cultural transformation and then focus our work on aligning Will2Succeed through careful and intentional application of Knowledge2Empower and Skill2Act. The current training infrastructure has to be reviewed to see what design principles and designs are in place to address the behaviour goal and how consistently the on-going implementation aligns to the design principles or informs any needed revision of the design. The employees involved in design and implementation of the training infrastructure will invariably be one of the teams identified as pivotal to the transformation and as such be one of the target participants in the will2succeed work.
We've developed a leadership program but I'm finding that the leadership talent pipeline is not growing – why is this so and what needs to change?
We see this a lot and it represents one of the primary principles of our approach. A careful study and understanding (Knowledge) of the existing leadership program is needed. If the program is really training, then the work is really to configure a more holistic development proposition given that training programs cannot develop leaders; experiences, challenges of various scales with failures and successes, develop leaders. A holistic approach takes in to consideration all the experiences, environment and scaffolds needed to foster development.
Having said that, there is a need to establish clarity as to what is expected from the leadership pipeline e.g. a healthy pool of successors for identified roles or a healthy pool of people with specific capabilities, etc. Alignment of the talent identification principles with the development approach is key especially with regard to will2succeed. We believe if we have people with will2succeed aligned to the knowledge and skill expectations of the leadership pipeline then the support provided to develop the knowledge and skill required to succeed will be proactively and effectively leveraged by the individuals. In contrast, making will2succeed an objective of development for the leadership pipeline makes it that much harder to be successful in developing that pipeline. Separately, ensuring the knowledge of what is required to be effective in the leadership roles (expectations) is clear across employees in the organisation will help to surface the behaviours that will make identifying the best bets with aligned will2succeed easier.
Some other questions we've encountered are listed below.
If you or your organisation are tackling any of these questions or questions like these, we would love to have a chat with you to see how we might be able to support you in deciding on your response and executing that decision effectively.
- We have many training courses (particularly around conduct and control) on offer on our LMS but behavioural delinquencies are still a challenge – how can we do better?
- We seek to change our culture as a company, we have recently revised and relaunched our values and we implemented with extensive communications and training, we are not seeing the cultural change we expected, what else could we do?
- We've been trying to integrate learning into work to cultivate continuous workplace learning – what are the critical success factors to doing so?
- We have a network of churches across the globe and we constantly face the challenge of finding and keeping good creative people like musicians, audio / video engineering personnel, given these are quite specific skills set, how do we manage this talent challenge?
- We are transforming as an organization and we need to develop new capability often relying either on building them internally or buying them through talent acquisition however we feel a little like the blind leading the blind in that we know we need to change but managers making hiring and development decisions don't really know what the new skills look like, how can we better respond to this challenge?
- I am having difficulty trying to develop a competency framework because the stakeholders can't agree on the required competencies and it keeps changing – is there another way?
- We have a complete suite of training programs that is housed on our LMS but not utilised and worse yet, takes effort and resources to manage and keep updated and relevant – what are we doing wrong?
- Most of the regular training courses we have on offer are focused primarily on new entrants or leadership. The other courses are ad hoc and uncaptured – how do we structurally capture and manage new / created knowledge and enable the rest of the organisation?
- We want to deploy a mobile learning strategy; how should we approach it?
- We have a global workforce; how do we provide training at scale with an assurance of deep relevance and impact to the ability to do their job?