The training priorities of organizations today are as much in motion as the business world in which they operate. Whether you’re seeking training or signing off on it, the 2015 Corporate Learning Priorities Survey from Henley Business School has helpful insights. The Henley researchers surveyed 368 executives from 39 countries on their organizational learning priorities and challenges. We took a closer look at this study and identified five key takeaways that could impact the direction of executive education in your workplace.
1. Two most-cited organizational challenges: developing leadership capability and managing costs
This means leadership-oriented executive education has recognized value for any professional role or rank. That said, just because more people can benefit from training doesn’t mean there’s unlimited funding available for that training.
TAKEAWAY: Prioritize leadership-oriented programmes but keep an eye on course price tags, and build a strong case for why your employer should invest the needed resources.
2. VUCA skills are needed for senior managers and high potentials
The number-one staff development priority identified in the report centers on leadership capabilities within volatile, uncertain, complex, ambiguous (VUCA) environments. Key staff groups need to be able to cope with quickly shifting external forces combined with team-based internal structures that lack clear authority.
TAKEAWAY: Keep an eye out for exec-ed programme descriptions that include any one of the “VUCA” adjectives, or related ones like “turbulence”, “agility” or “readiness”.
3. Coaching is a preferred learning method
85% of the HR professionals surveyed named individual coaching as a planned learning and development activity at their institutions. This could mean one of several things for you. There are numerous executive-education programmes designed to help managers become better coaches themselves. Courses with titles like “Successfully Coaching and Mentoring Individuals and Teams” or “Coaching Performance” could be a way to bring those highly valued coaching capabilities into your organisation. Or, you might simply want to double-check executive programme descriptions to make sure they include a coaching component -- often, even short workshops and seminars will offer 1:1 post-programme coaching. If a fee-based programme isn’t in the cards right now, another option is initiating an in-house coaching community within your company.
Read the full article for the rest of the takeaways.
This article excerpt was originally published on the Economist Executive Education Navigator and was reprinted with permission. Explore other topics at Economist Executive Education Navigator.
About the Author: Laura Montgomery is an independent higher-education consultant.