Thursday, January 29, 2009

Staffing for Success: How to Meet Changing Business Needs

Nyla Reed, Edugroup, presented an interesting session on training moving from traditional to some desired future state.  Implicit throughout her presentation was the concern that the current learning teams may not have the skills to meet this new business need. As an example she suggested from a business unit dedicated learning team to one at the enterprise level. Factors to consider are organizational structure, departmental skills and deficiencies. In comparing current state versus desired state, what's the skills gap and how will you "skill up?  

From the participants and the current state of hiring freeze it appears that retraining current staff or recruiting internally those that have the desired skill set. 

I wondered how many learning groups use competency models for the desired skills. If models exist, I wonder how many models include a competency on INFLUENCE and ORGANIZATIONAL SAVVIERNESS (apologies to Stephen Colbert). Can the learning staff influence decision makers, SME, vendors, etc. 

I was reminded of a large company I worked for that built a matrixed learning organization with the business units owning their functional training while the enterprise group owned the corporate stuff - business compliance, sexual harassment, workplace violence, etc. You don't want multiple versions of those programs with business unit perspectives. We lacked the INFLUENCE competency and it took some time to figure out how to make things happen, organizational savvierness. This became very clear to me in reading Dana and Jim Robinson's Strategic Business Partner

Skill up on INFLUENCE and find those people that can make things happen in your organization and build that savvierness.

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