Thursday, January 04, 2007

Developmental Alliance: A Case Study

Big organizations that are keen to sustain their growth rate and secure bigger market shares, are nowadays facing serious problems in developing their people at the same rate they grow. managers became so involved in strategic planning, Production, marketing, and sales activities to the extent they do not find time to coach their teams. The impact of this becomes more evident in all the front line jobs that have direct contact with the customers. It becomes worse still in service organizations that build their glory on how they can 'pamper' their customers.
Due to the lack of continuous training and coaching, the sales people find themselves driven by escalating bottom lines and very tight deadlines to cope with organizational expectations of them.
Consequently, sales teams become too result oriented to the extent that they may neglect some of their organizations' business codes and ethics in dealing with their customers. They may rush customer to take a buying decision of the products and/or services without spending enough time identifying their needs, and helping them get what they really need not what the salesperson want them to have. Naturally, a skills and competencies gap between current and expected performance levels exists.
Training departments became unable to close this gap fast enough, nor to cope with the in-house training demands restricted by inflexible deadlines. New methods of training had to be developed in order to satisfy the increasing on-going demand on coaching the field teams. Complementary training activities to the training departments had to be initiated, and new training modules as well. Modules that address marketing and sales people behavior, being both efficient and effective, and consume less time than the traditional classroom training.
Companies like Cisco came up with technological solutions for the problem. Being the biggest networking company in the world with 77 acquisitions since 1999, more than 51,000 employees icluding 16,000 engineers operating in 117 countries with one third of the world population, coordinated coaching for this enormous number of employees becomes almost impossible.
Strategic allaince with an advanced E-training provider becomes a feasible solution, and training provider who can tailor sales interactive coaching models that are built around integrated complementary classroom and distance activities. Experts all over the world can deliver these modules in classes nearer to Cisco operations in 15 different languages, followed by telephone coaching sessions that reinforce the skills and competencies taught in class. Cisco ally in this is Richardson, an American training organization with a customer driven culture that demonstrates the same values and business ethics of Cisco.
A new trend is being developed by these two companies which I believe is going soon to be copied by other organizations, especially that the outcome is measurable.

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