Influencing Others to Use Project Management Practices

Traditionally, project management processes and expertise in health care have rested in the areas of facilities management and development and/or Information Technology implementation. Although many of those in leadership roles within health care operations have spent a significant amount of time implementing new programs and introducing new equipment, for example, solid project management practices have not been known and/or utilized in areas other than facilities and IT.

Read More

Introduction of an IT Project Management Methodology in a Fast-Growing Company

This article explains the rationale behind the creation of an in-house, customized project management methodology, iMAP, at a rapidly growing pharmaceutical company. The authors also describe the priorities that were selected to start with its implementation: a solid project initiation, a clear project life cycle, a special attention to risk management, a first step in reporting standardization, and specific attention to the activities necessary for the transition to operations. They provide an overview of their approach to IT project governance and how a defined project management methodology is the key for its success.

Read More

The Limitations of Applying Private-Sector Models to Federal Operations

Total quality initiatives in the early 1990s, Vice President Gore’s National Partnership for Reinventing Government, and President G.W. Bush’s President’s Management Agenda each attempted to incorporate private-sector management best practices into federal operations. Now President Obama and Congress see a bloated federal bureaucracy requiring restructuring. Another round of reform initiatives will be no more successful in the critical area of labor cost control than past efforts until government leaders recognize that federal managers operate in a fundamentally different decision-making environment than their private-sector counterparts.

Read More

Talent Management Challenges in China

(From Broadcast Newsroom) — PageUp People, a Multinational Talent Management solutions provider, today announced the release of its recent research titled, “Into China: Talent Management Essential in a Land of Paradox,” authored by Sylvia Vorhauser-Smith, senior vice president of Research. As more companies expand operations into the growing market of China, they are presented with the enormous opportunities of the country’s large workforce as well as the many difficulties arising from different workplace practices and norms. This new research explores the reasons behind these challenges and how organizations seeking to leverage the growing qualified workforce in China can best equip themselves to maximize employee performance. With China at the cusp of significant change, there are several challenges facing multinational corporations already established in China and those looking to expand their operations into the country. The aim of PageUp People’s research paper is to provide organizations with insight into how they can better understand and manage their talent in an environment drastically different from their home base. It is designed to educate and provide practical suggestions for optimizing human capital productivity and engagement while exploring the challenging differences between the western and eastern worlds. Key findings include: Read more.

Read More

Sales Operations

Your critical sales dashboard for aligning measurement and effectiveness… Sales operations is an over overlooked area of the professional selling system. Sales operations team members are responsible for a helping sales team members attain success by designing processes, tools, and controls to support the sales process. An effective sales operation function supports sales management decision-marking by helping to monitor current business processes and sales productivity tools for adequacy. Sales operations staff also develop and drive strategic infrastructure planning efforts by collaborating with business planners, functional leaders, and sales management team members. Sales operations employees are also responsible for driving or supporting infrastructure change and alignment. Therefore, collaboration with sales and operational management is very important in order to develop change management strategies and programs. Think about it: When does the sales process begin? When does it end? Sales operations helps you align sales effort to performance and determine exactly what it takes to improve selling efforts.

Read More

Putting Together the Pieces of the Talent Management Puzzle

Talent management has become a top priority for organizations, highlighting that the optimization of talent in the workforce directly affects everyday operations and in turn drives the bottom line. The ASTD-i4cp Talent Management Practices and Opportunities Study found that 19.9% of organizations reported that they manage talent effectively to a high or very high degree, with an additional one fifth admitting that their companies were effective users of talent to only a small extent or not at all. Talent management is anticipated to grow: over 80% of participants predict a growth in the next three years. What does the talent management puzzle look like? With talent management expected to become more important in the near future, it is essential to have a clear understanding of what talent management comprises and how the pieces of the puzzle fit together. According to many study participants, talent management should be a holistic initiative made up of integrated parts that create a synergy amongst the components. Ideally, talent management comprises a whole that exceeds the sum of its parts. The more integration that occurs between the elements, the more cohesive and effective the talent management program becomes. This is what distinguishes talent management from an array of conventional HR programs that have less connectivity. Only 18.7% of the survey respondents indicated that their companies integrated talent management components to a high or very high extent, and only 19.7% said their firm had the technological capability to do so. The element that was most integrated into the talent management program was performance management, with 63.7% of respondents citing it as being integrated to a high or very high extent in their organization. Learning/training was a close second (61.7%), followed by leadership development (59.1%), high-potential employee development (52.8%), and individual professional development (44.4%). All the components showed positive correlations with talent management effectiveness, with employee engagement (r=0.56) having the strongest correlation. As a high level of integration is positively and significantly correlated with the ability to manage talent effectively, organizations that wish to further integrate their programs and approaches have significant opportunities to improve their talent management function. Source: Talent Management: Practices and Opportunities (ASTD/i4cp) Click here to learn more about ASTD Research.

Read More

Meet the Metrics! Sales Management Madness.

YOUR SALES MANAGER IS NOT AVAILABLE TO ANSWER THAT QUESTION. YOUR EXPERIENCED SALES REP JUST LOST ANOTHER SALE. THE TEAM NEEDS TRAINING…(AGAIN). What is the problem here? The Sales Team has many needs for accomplishing its objectives. As Sales Trainers, your responsibility rests on your ability to teach your sales reps and sales managers HOW to manage those objectives. This can be done by isolating the specific metrics, processes and competencies. What are those objectives? What processes do you design that meet business goals? What metrics are you focusing on to drive performance? What competencies have you identified in EACH of your sales team members? WHAT EXACTLY IS YOUR SALES TEAM DOING, SAYING AND ACCOMPLISHING AFTER YOUR TRAINING IS OVER? It is important now for Sales Trainers to keep on top of the details of sales by focusing on training teams how to execute the right sales activities at the time, with the right knowledge, and building up the people you hire on the sales force the right way. The benefits of focusing on training impact are well worth the impact study: The amount of money gained, time savings and team performance increases are too high to ignore. A Sales Trainer can develop training systems that keep sales management operations manageable and profitable. IS YOUR SYSTEM WORKING? The end result of how your sales management team operates depends on how masterful you are at teaching, duplicating and re-focusing on the metrics, processes and competencies that drive your sales performance results. If the trainer does not monitor this closely, the impact of their training will not likely produce a successful outcome long term – and is usually seen in the unstable monthly sales revenue results and costly turn over in sales employees. This is not a good testimony for sales training – and unfortunately it exists in far too many organizations. Sales Training Drivers is committed to helping you identify these challenges and offering real world solutions to drive sales.

Read More

Epicor HCM – Human capital management solution for school

Epicor HCM – HR Management Software Today’s economy demands a more proactive, strategic role for the HR department. As competition for critical resources intensifies, managers, employees and candidates are demanding more from HR and human resource information systems (HRIS), moving beyond self-service to secure  direct access to relevant information and processes whether in the office or on […]

Read More

ASTD Certification Institute Announces Board of Directors for 2011

The ASTD Certification Institute proudly announces its Board of Directors for 2011. The ASTD Certification Institute is an affiliate of the American Society for Training & Development (ASTD) whose purpose is to set professional industry standards for the learning and development profession. The 2011 Board of Directors’ breadth of experience and expertise enhances the ASTD Certification Institute and demonstrates the Institute’s commitment to providing world-class, professional certification programs to the workplace learning and development field. Board members include: Wayne Benz, Independent Consultant and former Director of International Business Development for the Examination Institute for Information Science (EXIN), brings more than 40 years of experience in the IT field in technical, managerial, and executive positions with bot large and small international IT companies. Benz will serve as the 2011 Chair. Shannon Carter has served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Competency & Credentialing Institute (CCI) since 1999. Under her leadership, CCI realized unprecedented growth in the development and implementation of industry-leading initiatives related to patient safety, competency assessment, and continuing competence. Carter will serve through 2013. Gary Fluitt, Senior Certification Program Manager at Oracle, is a 20-year veteran of the IT training industry. Fluitt oversees the development of professional certification products and is a founding member of the IT Certification Council. Fluitt will serve through 2011. Darin Hartley has 20 years of experience in the training industry. He is currently the Director of Client Development at Intrepid Learning Solutions and has written numerous articles and books about e-learning and social networking. Hartley will serve through 2012. Sharon Rice, with 20 years of association management experience, is the Executive Vice President of Professional Development and Industry Content for APICS – The Association for Operations Management. She is responsible for guiding staff and volunteer leadership teams supporting courseware and instructor development, certification, research, publications, and the marketing of APICS. Rice will serve through 2013.

Read More

Home

All Categories Article Articles Books Courses Documents Job Aids Tools Magazines Podcasts Templates Top Collections Uncategorized Videos Webcasts Action Learning Advertising & PromotionsBusiness DevelopmentBusiness PlanningCareer DevelopmentCoaching CommunicationsConsultants Coordinating Cost Cutting Creativity and Innovation Crisis Management Customer Satisfaction Customer Service Decision Making DelegationEmployee PerformanceEntrepreneurshipEvaluations FacilitationFacilities Management Finances (For-Profit) Finances (Nonprofit) Fundraising (For-Profit) Fundraising (Nonprofit) Group Performance […]

Read More

The Planning Wars

Two years and two months after President Bush stood in front of a ‘Mission Accomplished’ sign to declare an end to major combat operations in Iraq, the war’s planning continues to be fervently contested. And regardless of ideological sides, it is a debate that reveals both common misconceptions and inescapable truths about the nature of planning. Here’s a project management perspective.

Read More

What Stands in the Way of a Company Thinking Globally?

In 2008, ASTD partnered with the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp) to better understand the challenges in today’s workforce due to globalization. The Study identified the four most widely cited barriers that keep the learning function from being deeply involved in international operations: budgetary constraints, not enough staff to conduct training, insufficient in-house skills to conduct training, and insufficient involvement of the learning function early enough in expansion. [more]When designing and delivering learning content to a global workforce, a number of complex issues arise. The ASTD/i4cp Study on globally dispersed workforces notes the most widely used practices to overcome those issues: use local subject matter experts have local experts review translated materials avoid the use of colloquialisms but use local data and images. Cultural learning doesn’t begin at headquarters for most companies. Global organizations tend to work harder at familiarizing employees in new regions with overall corporate values than they do at familiarizing headquarter employees with the culture of the new region. The study found that when at least one representative of the learning function joins a project team that focuses on how cultural differences affect management, this activity is associated with higher levels of both success of learning initiatives and the smoothness of the transition to international operations. Source: Learning’s Role in Globally Dispersed Workforces (ASTD/i4cp) Click here to learn more about ASTD Research.

Read More

Strategic Workplace Learning in the Public Sector

Strategic Workplace Learning in the Public Sector A little less than two years ago on this blog, I entered a curmudgeonly post on “The Non-Strategic State of Workplace Learning” (See Agile Bureaucracy, June 16, 2008 – http://community.thepublicmanager.org/cs/blogs/agile_bureaucracy/archive/2008/06/16/the-non-strategic-state-of-workplace.aspx ). My snarky premise was that even though since the mid-90s government at all levels had begun requiring strategic goals, measurable outcomes and periodic reporting on results, “this shift (hadn’t) yet made a noticeable dent” in aligning training and development investments with agency mission or management priorities. For example, I noted, “In a post-silo organizational culture, Chief Human Capital Officers (CHCOs) would be fully involved in the organization’s strategic planning and management systems (and such T&D) activities would be (integrated) to meet priority challenges.” Designing Strategic Leaning Efforts I also speculated that indicators of this integration might appropriately include the training community’s involvement in designing learning efforts to: foster an organization-wide performance culture improve oversight and accountability behavior recruit, engage and retain young professionals – among other priority HR challenges help IT professionals and non-technologists alike keep pace with expanding E-expectations help managers transcend boundaries of federal, state and local governments and foster collaboration among public, private, and nonprofit sectors assure that transparency becomes an organization-wide value help agency managers plan to share responsibility for achieving results – with other governmental levels, internationally and the private sector prepare managers for and respond more collaboratively to catastrophic disasters Again, the unflattering picture I painted two years ago didn’t include much evidence that the T&D community even had a seat at the table on these matters. To be sure, some of the feedback (and blowback) I received suggested that I had painted too bleak a picture. (After all, even the Dutch Masters included a few swatches of thick, white oil paint on their invariably dark canvases.) Nevertheless, few colleagues – trainers, HR leaders, and other public management professionals – could point to instances where training figured as an integral part of strategic public sector initiatives. Strategic Workplace Learning Observed Well, in searching for such illuminating examples, I’m beginning to see some light. In fact, the theme of the summer 2010 issue of The Public Manager is strategic workplace learning – with likely articles featuring case illustrations from such government organizations as: the US Departments of Defense, Energy, Homeland Security, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Transportation, and Veterans Affairs; and New York State, among others. Moreover, many of these public sector workplace learning innovations will be presented in interactive or workshop-style sessions at the American Society for Training and Development’s (ASTD’s) 2010 International Conference & Exposition to be held in Chicago, Illinois, May 16-19 ( http://www.astdconference.org/ ). Here are brief highlights from just two of these training efforts – both involving the US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA): Enabling Success in Afghanistan: Building Cultural Expertise at the US Department of Defense As the United States geared up to send thousands of troops into Afghanistan, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) faced the challenge of preparing hundreds of intelligence analysts to enter the country knowing something of the history, culture, politics, and governance of the region. The Afghanistan-Pakistan Regional Expertise Training Program was developed to deliver cultural expertise training to intelligence professionals and operations personnel across the Intelligence Community and US Department of Defense. This case study considers how the DIA responded to a time-critical, far-reaching problem that crossed agency and coalition lines. It examines how to meet the need for an immediate solution while addressing questions of funding, format, location, and ideal content – in effect, how to create and evaluate a sustainable model for preparing employees to operate in a range of countries and cultures. Creating a Collaborative Culture at the Defense Intelligence Agency After the terrorist attacks of September 2001, the members of the Intelligence Community (IC) needed to transform from a stove-piped culture, where employees viewed knowledge as power, to a collaborative culture, where employees saw knowledge sharing as their personal responsibility. Creating such a culture begins with an effective onboarding program. In 2004, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) leadership directed the development of an orientation and acculturation program to bring together all junior-level, professional-grade employees, regardless of job responsibilities. The 5-week program develops an understanding of how all elements of the DIA work together to support US National Security objectives and Department of Defense operations, and to collaborate with other Intelligence Community (IC) members. This program is innovative among IC onboarding courses by its attendance policy, the length of the course, the curriculum, and the instructional methodology. DIA recognized that new employees could be effective change agents and designed its onboarding program to help establish a knowledge sharing culture. The recitation examines training techniques DIA has used to foster a culture of collaboration across organizational lines, explores the challenges within organizations that inhibit collaboration, and identifies the role of senior leadership in transforming the culture and the onboarding process. Share Your Observations In subsequent posts, I’ll be sharing more examples of how government organizations are aligning training efforts with strategic agency goals. If you know of other examples of how public sector organizations have begun to align workplace learning efforts with priority mission and management challenges, please let me hear from you. Better still, encourage trainers and managers in these organizations to comment on this blog directly and weigh in with their own best practice T&D stories. I’ll make sure to share these examples with a larger audience.

Read More

New York State Office of the State Comptroller Redefines Standard of Business Analysis Excellence

Background The New York State Office of the State Comptroller (NYSOSC) in Albany maintains a broad scope of responsibility unmatched by similar offices in the United States. As the state’s chief fiscal and accounting officer, the Comptroller is a separately elected state-wide official whose primary duties include managing and investing the State’s cash assets, auditing government operations, paying all NYS employees, reviewing State contracts, overseeing the fiscal affairs of local governments including New York City, and operating two of the state’s retirement systems. As an agency charged with monitoring the effective financial operation of numerous other agencies and entities, the NYSOSC understands the need to carefully maintain its own project management (PM) and business analysis (BA) capabilities. Therefore, the Office engages in regular self-assessment and performance improvement in these areas. The ChallengeNYSOSC has built a reputation for continually advancing project management best practices through its PM Center of Excellence (CoE). However, realizing that enhanced business analysis practices can also increase project success and user support, as well as heighten customer satisfaction, the agency has sought, since 2006, to improve its business analysis practices by instituting a Business Analysis Center of Excellence (BACoE). NYSOSC performance improvement programs had primarily benefited PM teams prior, and support had not been available for the advancement of BA teams. By promoting BA competencies, knowledge management, enterprise analysis skills and practices similarly to the PM program, NYSOSC sought to achieve comparable, positive results. Strategic PlanningThe agency’s cross-division Business Analysis Work Group completed a strategic report in 2006 presenting the benefits of advancing NYSOSC’s use of business analysis and making next-step recommendations, including the launch of a BACoE. In 2007, the second phase of the project was launched to begin to develop and support business analysis as an organizational resource. Kevin Belden, Deputy Comptroller and CIO, and Kirk Schanzenbach, Director of the Program Management Office (PgMO), were executive sponsors; and Barbara Ash, Assistant Director for BA in the PgMO, was the project manager. The project team consisted of numerous representatives from BA units across the agency. To provide counsel on industry best practices, and to resolve issues that were impeding progress, the project team enlisted the help of ESI International. “Having worked with ESI in the past to build our project management and business skills capabilities,” said Schanzenbach, “we were confident that they were the best partner in achieving our BA goals.” ESI began by working with NYSOSC leadership and the project team to outline unifying objectives for BA and PM skills areas, including the need to: The Solution In cooperation with ESI, NYSOSC determined the key strategies to ensure a successful program. Foremost among these were: To support the program launch, ESI designed and delivered a two-day, project kick-off workshop that centered on the program’s four-part learning framework and targeted development of knowledge, skills, ability and attitude. Day one introduced the program to senior management and focused on developing best practices in alignment with BACoE operating standards. Executive activities included competitive, interactive group exercises that helped to define and prioritize goals around developing the BACoE. Day two introduced the program to front line business analysts and ensured a common understanding of BA concepts and executive directives. Following the kick-off, the team worked in subcommittees on project deliverables, received best practice advice, and exercised skills and competencies through coaching exercises. Special attention was also given to evaluating and treating such problematic areas as standards and methodologies topics for the BA group. “This intensive learning experience was very well received as a serious enhancement to the traditional instructor-led effort.” said Ash. “Participants also felt that it accelerated the program launch significantly compared to previous programs.” Toward Change In the early months of the program, ESI participated in regular group meetings and calls in order to provide coaching and to reinforce goals and specific training targets. While ESI continues to deliver essential counsel, the NYSOSC has quickly achieved the competency to offer coaching and mentoring using internal resources. Other significant program accomplishments and benefits to date include: Championed by executive sponsors Belden and Schanzenbach and project manager Ash, the internal team continues to recommend and oversee BA learning programs and progress, as well as support the advancement of BA maturity.

Read More

New Survey from Krauthammer: Around 80% of businesses feel resistant to current difficult business climate

KRAUTHAMMER | London, UK 80% of international businesses feel relatively resistant when it comes to the worsening business climate. 55% will defend their investments in ‘behavioural development’ programmes in areas such as leadership, management and sales. On the downside, 20% say that they will cut their budgets. This and other findings are the results of a probe conducted by Krauthammer in late Autumn 2008. 34% of the respondents forecast a poor business climate for 2009. Around 20% believe they have “low resistance” to a difficult business climate and are planning to cut their behavioural development budgets in line with their predictions. However, over twice as many – 55% – feel resistant – and 42% even plan to raise development budgets. “The news is mixed. The most positive signal we can distill from our probe is that companies will prioritise initiatives with a real and measurable impact. So consultants that excel in sophisticated forms of body-shopping will probably be hit as hard as temporary personnel providers”, comments Ronald Meijers, Co-chairman of the Board of Krauthammer. *) body shopping typically implies filling temporary competence gaps rather than structurally improving a company’s performance. The respondents will defend training and coaching more vigorously than they will consulting. And as many CEOs admit their difficulties in predicting results for 2009, leadership training will be most defended – by 53% of respondents, followed by sales training (47%) and management training (42%). Crossfunctional training such as IT- and language skills will be least defended, the probe suggests. When it comes to coaching, too – leadership, management and sales coaching will be most defended. Overall, training seems less vulnerable than coaching – training will be cut by fewer numbers of people than its coaching equivalents. According to the probe, consulting budgets will be defended by around a third of businesses. Least popular, the probe suggests, will be consulting in “hard issues” such as strategies, operations and structures – only 19% of the respondents would defend it. A combination of “soft” and “hard” issues such as sales effectiveness will be most resilient of consulting propositions – 33% of respondents say they will protect budgets in this area. Nick Girling Senior Consultant, Office Leader UK, Krauthammer Tel: +44 20 8770 7200 Mobile: +44 7900 5648 79 E-mail: nick.girling@krauthammer.com Coaching, consulting and training company Krauthammer assists clients worldwide in successfully uniting permanent people development and sustainable business performance. It offers major change implementation and human capital development programmes at the individual, team and corporate levels optimising the personal effectiveness of leaders and managers, salespeople and negotiators, trainers, coaches, consultants and support staff. Established in 1971, Krauthammer International has 300 consultants and employees, delivering services in over 50 countries, in 15 languages. International consistency and the ongoing professional development of the consultants are ensured by four annual Krauthammer University sessions where every consultant spends between 2 and 3 weeks per year. www.krauthammer.com

Read More

March Big Question: Supporting New Managers?

Ok, so it looks like Learning Circuits Blog is not a spam blog after all. And that means that we can ask this month’s big question – a few days late. This month’s big question actually was a question asked by an attendee at Jay Cross’ presentation on informal learning at ASTD TechKnowledge. She was in charge of designing training and support systems to help people transition into management roles throughout the organization (customer service, sales, operations, etc.). She told us that her organization was used to doing this with instructor-led training, but that she wanted to explore a combination of instructor-led, online and informal learning. She wanted suggestions on things she could do, what she needed to consider, and how to balance what approaches were taken. So, this month, The Big Question is… What Would You Do to Support New Managers? Please answer this question by posting to your own blog or commenting on this post. (For further help in how to participate via blog posts, see the side bar.) Points to Consider:

Read More

Laurance Alvarado Joins ASTD Board of Directors

The American Society for Training & Development announces that Laurance Alvarado, Senior Director with Alvarez & Marsal Public Sector Services, is joining the Society’s Board of Directors for a three-year term, 2011-2013. Mr. Alvarado has more than 24 years of operational and consulting leadership experience driving organizational excellence, sustainability, and thought leadership with governments and multinational corporations in more than 20 countries. His industry experience covers customs and border agencies, departments and ministries of defense, health care departments, public-private partnerships, privatization initiatives, special and economic development zones, petrochemical companies, global supply chain initiatives, and trade agreements. Before joining A&M, Mr. Alvarado was the co-founder and President of an ethically centered strategy, restructuring, and management consulting service. He served as a Senior Director for the strategy and business development unit of the international investment and development arm of Dubai Holding, and led the development and implementation of a governance framework for a $50 billion investment for building a new city. Mr. Alvarado served for two years as the Managing Director, Middle East, for BearingPoint, leading operations, business development, talent management, and consulting ventures. He was a Managing Director of KPMG Consulting and BearingPoint’s Border Security and Transportation Practice, and served as an active duty and reserve officer in the United States Air Force. Mr. Alvarado holds two bachelor’s degrees in business administration from Texas A&M University, a master’s degree in management from Troy State University, and has completed executive education at Columbia Business School.

Read More

Guest Post: Smart Moves: Capitalize on Trigger Events and Careful Timing to Win More Sales

Note: This is a guest post from Michael Boyette from the Top Dog Sales Blog. Want to contribute your own guest post? Let us know! Trigger events are the silver bullets in sales, because they allow you to get in front of the right person at exactly the right time. Sales coach and author Craig Elias points to three types of trigger events. Each trigger signals a high probability that the company will eventually purchase new goods and services. Trigger #1: Executive moves Executives are typically hired to make a difference. And since top executive tenure tends to be short, they want to make their mark fast. They need to buy solutions and services in order to make that happen. And they need something new, because if the old stuff was working they wouldn’t be there. It’s also easier for new management to change suppliers. They can say that a previous vendor was a poor choice made by someone before them. Trigger #2: New funding Studies show that companies with new funding are up to eight times more likely to buy services than comparable companies that haven’t had a similar funding event. Funding is meant to drive growth, which means purchasing new solutions and services to help with sales, marketing, product development, operations, and so forth. It’s not just that they’re flush. Many times management is under pressure to spend new money quickly to show investors they’re doing everything possible to succeed. Trigger #3: Launches New products create demand for supporting products and services that fuel sales growth for the new product, such as marketing services, sales training, and e-commerce. New products often spawn the departure of personnel and other changes as people move on to newer projects. Product launches therefore create secondary trigger events, such as new funding and executive changes. Hitting the Trifecta Corporate acquisitions, by their very nature, involve changes in executive roles, which often ripple throughout the entire organization. They also involve changes in funding, with some groups doing better under the new regime and some doing worse. Like any other major organizational change, a merger creates multiple trigger events, each of which can be leveraged into a sales opportunity. How to Capitalize Use something as simple as Google Alerts to search for product launches or LinkedIn to follow changes in executive staffing. One Sales 2.0 application for this purpose is iSell, from OneSource, which informs you of the trigger event, and also provides context, such as information about the industry and the prospect’s competitors. The application provides you with enough information to have a relevant conversation the first time you talk to the prospect in response to the trigger. Michael Boyette is the managing editor of Selling Essentials newsletter and editor of the Top Sales Dog blog (http://rapidlearninginstitute.com/top-sales-dog). He’s also managed marketing/PR programs for DuPont, Tyco Electronics, and US Healthcare, among others. In addition, he’s authored ten books on a variety of subjects for such publishers as Simon & Schuster, Dutton and Holt. Contact Michael via email at topsalesdog@rapidlearninginstitute.com.

Read More

GO TEAM! Root and Toot Your Business!

Understanding Business Context SHOW the 35,000 ft. view! How do you build an emotionally charged organization that people love to work for? Are your employees and your community shouting how wonderful your company is? Understanding business context is a cornerstone for this way of thinking and it is a Sales Training Driver Foundational Competency. Delivering a training curriculum in sales management should outline the business context of the entire organization. Get Excited!To help Sales Professionals develop sales knowledge and sales skills, they need to understand the “bigger picture”. This would include an overview or “framework” of the organization they are representing and how their work impacts business results as outlined from Senior Leadership. Make sure that you are teaching the sales team how to understand organizational cultural behavior, resources and functions as it relates to sales / business operations. Be a Cheerleader for your Team! Be Passionate about your work! Understanding the entire business context of your organization will help you sell! Knowing that you have an entire team of people to stand behind, support, and collaborate with you in every department can be an amazing short story of credibility you can share you’re your prospect. To take this deeper, think about how you feel about your High School or University? Your school is a team collaborative organization with employees who are driving business results! They sell coursework to students and make a profit. Delivering education is big business! Yet, when we look at the overall experience of our “school days”, most of us would not be thinking about strategic profit making! Think about what happens when a student graduates. How does that feel? Is it a positive, emotional experience?Most graduates will yell out the name of their Football Team! Go Gators! Go Bears! Go Tigers! Some of you would defend Your campus experience like it was the BEST place on Earth!The positive attitude and energy from you is so passionate that the other person listening will likely “buy” into the fact that it may very well be a great school! Our workplace should be “feel” like this! Do you remember your favorite Teacher? (98% of us do!) Do you feel this way about your boss, Senior Leaders, or CEO? Why don’t we? Something must be good about your place of work that would make you shout to the rooftops about it! Right? The point is, if you are going to sell a product or service, don’t miss an opportunity to be a cheerleader for your company and give support back to the people that make it great! Your prospect will respect you for it. The sales person should “see” how each business functions and how employees collaborate with each other. Sales Training Drivers would have you look at the division work flow “upstream, downstream and cross stream.” Have them look at the current stakeholder SWOT Analysis. (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) Understanding business context will help you sell the story. Here are some Key Points of “Business Context” Training

Read More

Dubai Authority ramps up e-learning

(ME NewsWire) Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) strengthens its initiatives to implement the e-learning system as part of its steady march towards excellence and building up an integrated society based on knowledge. DEWA, meanwhile, takes into consideration attracting and bringing in the most up-to-date technologies and solutions and integrating them into its various e-operations. DEWA has launched several e-learning programmes including New Employees Programme, which includes Time Management and Pressures, Successful Work Team, Decision Making & Problem Solving, e-management intended to DEWA Middle Management Staff. Read more.

Read More

Canada: FuelCell Energy Charges up High-Potentials

Ottawa, Canada ( PRWEB) April 24, 2009 — FuelCell Energy Inc., the global leader in clean stationary electric power, implemented Halogen Software’s talent management suite globally in just six weeks, and within one appraisal cycle created a high-performance culture. The organization improved the integrity and value of its employee performance data, aligned its rapidly growing workforce around a common set of goals, and ensured its high-potential employees were recognized and nurtured. The demands of the current economic climate are putting pressure on organizations globally to quickly gain a better understanding of their workforce and align, communicate with and motivate their top performers. FuelCell recognized that, especially during this difficult economic downturn, maximizing the performance of its human capital was essential. Understanding where to allocate scarce resources and how to strategically develop talent to meet business needs is an urgent necessity for companies of all sizes. FuelCell Energy is a clear example of how quickly organizations can achieve these goals and strengthen their competitive position in the process. By automating its talent management processes FuelCell helped strengthen and streamline its rapid global expansion- growing from 150 to over 500 employees in four years. Before implementing Halogen’s solution, the organization faced a number of challenges in their performance management system, including a lack of consistency, accountability, and employee engagement with the existing process. As a result, performance reviews were not considered a valuable tool for the organization as a whole. “The HR team found the system and process painful for everyone involved and looked to overhaul it and implement an automated system,” said Sandra Mauro, HR Manager with FuelCell Energy. “Once we had decided to invest in Halogen, things began to improve quickly. We were live within six weeks of training. It was awesome. I have done a lot of software implementations in my career and I know how painful they can be. Getting Halogen up and running was painless.” Halogen Software is able to consistently implement its suite for customers under very tight deadlines, even for those with global operations, because the solution is so flexible and easily configured. This enables customers to have the Halogen applications adapt to their processes and forms-rather than the other way around. Once Halogen’s s