Experiential learning essay

This includes assessment strategies, discussion Of developmental patterns, and potential gains in organizational commitment and managerial performance. Design/methodology/approach – A model is proposed for connecting previously established management competencies to developmental opportunities in the manager’s current task and group environments. Findings – Self-assessment instruments are presented for general management competencies and for task structure with notes on how managers, their supervisors and/or mentors might complete those ratings, in order to then use the proposed action model for learning/development.

Practical limitations – The potential impact of managerial coaching processes or diversity in organizational cultural contexts on the use of this model are noted. Social implications – Improved managerial competencies and organizational performance may be obtained from following this model along with increased organizational commitment by the managers. Originality/value – This paper presents a new model for self-assessment of managerial development needs, discusses how those can be linked with on-the-job tasks thin an existing job placement and organization.

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While the literature documents the value of developmental opportunities, no system exists for the assessment or selection of a developmental plan within an existing job title or organization. The proposed model fills a large conceptual gap in mapping a managers personal career goals onto the organization’s career paths or management development system objectives. Keywords Management development, Career development, Action learning, Self assessment, Career planning, Competency modeling, Task structure paper type Conceptual paper Introduction

Training in organizations increases individuals’ capabilities to meet job demands. Such efforts range from required and regular training such as mandated by legal and administrative rules (e. G. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) to technical or technologically based training (e. G. Introducing a new Enterprise Resource Planning system).

A common distinction is made, however, between training and development, with development usually being associated with the individual gaining new capabilities useful for both present and future jobs Mathis and Jackson, 2011 Further, most employers today have managerial competency models which target desired capabilities in their managerial staff. Journal of Management Development Volvo. 32 NO. 7, 2013 up. 756-767 r Emerald Group Publishing Limited 0262-1711 DOI 10. 108/JAM-1 1-2011-01 18 Training vs. development for managers There are many external resources and educational options available for management development. There are one-day workshops to improve leadership skills, project management certification courses, and university degree programs for those seeking the highest level of development. Another option for management development is to create an internal management development program. This is not only a cost-effective solution, but it promotes teamwork and allows for a tailored program appropriate to the organization’s specific needs.

Management development is therefore training that has an immediate and a long-term organizational benefit. But these developmental efforts can be costly and in times of economic recession, organizations may take a hard look at the disadvantages of traditional management development efforts. Most management development programs are offered as off-the-job and even off- the-job-site activities (see Table There are costs associated with developing a program or contracting with a developer. There are costs associated With paying the trainees to attend.

It is expensive to pay training staff, buy training materials, and keep training records. There are even opportunity costs for decreased productivity during the times the employees are absent from their work roles. Learning formats differ in the acceptance by trainees and their prior history of transfer of training. Table II lists six common learning formats (e. . Formal instruction such as platform training to wilderness trips) and some commonly discussed disadvantages to each format.

On-the-job training is the most common method for training non-managerial employees (Blander and Snell, 2010). It is also seen by many as the most effective way of facilitating learning in the workplace (Cohn, 2007; Hodges, 2001; Session, 2001). However, one of the reasons is it not used more widely with management development is because it is also one of the most poorly implemented training methods due to the Training method Classroom instruction Workbook/manual Videotape Public seminar

Computer-based training Audio recording Non computerized self-study Case study Role play internet sources Self-assessment instruments Intranet sources Broadcast/satellite TV Game/simulation (not computer based) Group videoconferencing Teleconferencing (audio only) Outdoor experiential program Game/simulation (computer based) Desktop videoconferencing Virtual reality program Note: *Based on a sample of 1,828 source: Industry Report 1 998 (1998) Experiential learning for managers 757 Percent of organizations reporting use 88 73 70 57 50 39 35 33 31 23 21 20 19 17 11 9 4 2 Table l.

Instructional methods ND media Learning format Poss. able disadvantage Formal instruction Expense of pay trainees and trainers while off the job Requires verbal and study skills Inhibits transfer of learning Costly to develop the experience itself Cannot always duplicate real situations with fidelity Costly to develop or to send trainees to if agency directed Takes time to administer Cannot recreate true motivations from situation Role playing behaviors may not be real or transferable May not relate to job and/or coworkers Costly to administer Physically challenging Simulation 758 Assessment center Role-playing Table II.

Disadvantages of off-site development programs Sensitivity training Wilderness trips lack of a structured development environment, the lack of well-defined competencies that an organization wants their managers to possess, and a lack of coordination with human resources. The core of management development should be on-the-job (provided they are well organized, well planned, supervised, and challenging) with other off-the-job development methods used to supplement these experiences because much of what is learned in off-site training programs rarely gets used back on the job (Blander and Snell, 2010).

Another problem with management development is that organizations may opt for fad programs seeking a quick fix reflecting inadequate human resource planning. Another problem with quick fix management development is that when a manager has learned new ideas and techniques outside of the job itself, managers may return to their jobs only to find that they are still bound by old techniques and attitudes held by their coworkers. This means the external job development (usually classroom training) is not used on the job.

Organizational efforts to develop managers frequently utilize ineffective readings whereby traditional training programs for managers had the following assumptions: “management consists of a set of skills and behaviors that can be broken down into their molecular elements and presented sequentially; people learn best in a standardized environment with expert models, concrete advice, and practice and repetition to a standard; and people can attain managerial proficiency within 8 to 24 hours.

These assumptions have driven the creation of the traditional three-ring binders – how to lists and bullet points in off-site training settings” (Brighten, 2004, p. 48). This often creates a disconnection between the teacher and the student. Brighten states that “current research on how people learn suggests there is a better way to develop high levels of managerial talent in organizations and that learning is optimized when there is a strong desire to learn, opportunity and safety to make mistakes, availability of peer and expert models, real life experience, opportunities for learners to help others learn, and mentoring. Brighten goes on to state that “if good management skill could be reduced to a how to list and acquired through repetition and reactive, there would be many more good managers operating in organizations today. ” The typical forms of on-the-job training historically utilized such methods as job rotation, cross-training, and apprentice training are not very relevant to management.

Other training programs such as hiring trainers to come on site, outsourcing training and sending managers to conferences and workshops and/or educational institutions requires taking managers away from their current jobs which has become too expensive for many organizations. In addition, the long-term transfer of knowledge may not occur. Studies show that investment in management development improves financial performance (Bessie and Encumber, 2007; Lavenders, 2008).

Management development for the most part is also self-development (Souses and Poster, 2003). Therefore, the starting point is to have a method in place that will provide the feedback essential for identifying and proportioning management development by determining the required management competencies the manager needs, then assessing where the manager is, and determining how to incorporate into the manager’s current experiences needed to advance that manager to he highest level of each competency.

In this paper we propose a systematic means to assess management development needs of the individual manager which might then be linked to common on-the-job task environments which, when selectively engaged in may lead to substantial benefits in terms of targeted managerial competencies and capabilities. We see this type of system as more cost effective, as having the most face validity, and as minimizing transfer of training losses. Current models of management development The developmental challenge profile (DOC) was created and first reported by McCauley et al. 994). This instrument seeks to assess the developmental components of managerial jobs by collecting ratings across 1 5 scales and a total Of 96 items. However, ten Of the scales deal with organization-wide factors or even extra-organizational factors (e. G. Adverse business conditions). Only five of the scales refer to factors which might be under the manager’s own control (e. G. Developing new directions). In any case, the DOC lacks any practical guide for how developmental assignments might be identified or even created. It lacks a practical application model.

Previous studies have established the value of job related experiences to career outcomes. Champion et al. (1994) showed tattoos rotation, for example, had a positive relationship with such career-related variables as salary and promotion, positive affect, and self-perceptions of skill acquisition in a sample of 255 employees. In a sample of 809 employees without managerial responsibilities, those who take the initiative in career self-management have been found to report significantly higher affective commitment and self-perceived career success (De Voss et al. , 2009).

Overall the pattern of results for career self- management and selection of a variety of job experiences supports employees gaining in competencies and showing greater organizational commitment. We found one empirical study of the impact that developmental assignments have on managerial success. Dragoon et al. (2009) conducted an empirical study Of 445 junior-level managers to determine the contribution that developmental job assignments made to managerial competencies (i. E. As rated by the managers’ supervisor in this study). A moderated regression analysis controlled for demographic variables as well as job tenure and organizational tenure.

Results showed a significant amount of the variance in rated competency was accounted for by the main effect for the developmental quality of the manager’s assignment. A motivational self- rating, learning goal orientation, interacted with the assignment’s quality to account for an additional amount of variance beyond that accounted for by the assignment or any measure of tenure. In sum, managers who were motivated to learn and had access 759 760 to developmentally enriched assignments showed significant gains in managerial competencies. Managerial competency models

Competency models identify gaps in knowledge, skills, and abilities (Mathis and Jackson, 2011 A managerial competency model includes a list of management competencies needed to be successful (Bennie, 1 984; Katz, 1955; Miniature, 1973; Sandwich, 1993). Management development must begin somewhere and we are recommending the use of an assessment form to determine what a manager’s current competencies are. A plan that includes mentoring/ coaching, on-the-job experience, and regular feedback about where the manager is on the organization’s competency continuum will enable them to intention to improve upon the competency areas they are weak in.

This means designing a program that quantifies the management competencies needed, provides a framework to provide feedback, and measures progress to proficiency. This profile would measure the gaps between a manager’s current performance and the desired proficiency. Once proficient in one competency area, the manager would then focus on becoming proficient in another area. Using this methodology, a dashboard can be designed that measures and displays results as the manager works through their development.

Such a process involves the human resources staff, the supervisor, and the manager teaming up to create and monitor the managers on-the-job development plan (individualized learning plan) and progress. A rating form for assessing management competencies Organizations may adapt an existing competency model or create a new management competency model. The competencies may include but are not limited to: leadership, customer focus, team/employee development, professionalism, business knowledge, accountability, people management, and personal performance.

Most organizations see it as desirable to have a pacific competency model. However, to further this discussion, we have created a general managerial competency rating form that could be used across organizations and industries. Each competency may have multiple levels (see Table Ill for an example of a general management competency rating form with three levels) arranged in increasing order of behavioral demands and characteristic sophistication that defines a logical step-by-step development sequence. Each level builds upon the levels below it.

Performance increases gradually as the competency level increases with the argue competency level set at the highest level. Any effort spent developing beyond the target level would be better invested in developing a different competency. The initial competencies of all managers are determined via a management competency rating form that may be a managers self- assessment or may also be utilized like a 360-feedback method where the employee, co-workers, and supervisor also assess all competency areas of each manager to determine where the organization needs to focus their manager development.

Once a management development plan is created ongoing communication teen the manager and their mentor and/or supervisor is needed to determine the level of competency achieved and provide continued support to continue to master the highest competency level in all areas the organization deems essential. This reinforces and supports the efforts made by managers throughout the year, modifying priorities and resources as needed.

It involves continuously striving to achieve the highest level Dimension Description Leadership Level 1: Has confidence in others, motivates through example, and is committed to success Level 2: Encourages improvement and energize others to achieve organizational goals Level 3: Inspires others to achieve organizational mission/vision Level 1 understands customers needs and ensures customer satisfaction/ service excellence Level 2: Partners with customers to create added value Level 3: Anticipates customer needs, seeks their perspective to create a competitive advantage bevel 1 : Supports employee development, assesses employee needs, and provides feedback Level 2: Coaches employees and creates a personalized developmental plan with each employee Level 3: Mentors and works collaboratively with employees to create longer raining goals Level 1 : Demonstrates concerns about meeting organizational standards of performance and follows professional standards even when not in self-interest bevel 2: Models high standards of professionalism and insists upon high standards of professionalism from others Level 3: Demands high standards of professionalism and integrity from the organization Level 1 : Demonstrates broad knowledge of the business and ensures optimal use of resources Level 2: Recognizes and addresses market developments and shares knowledge Level 3: Foresees future trends and understands how they may impact the Level 1: Insists upon high performance and monitors progress against objectives Level 2: Holds others accountable for their performance and appropriately addresses performance issues Level 3: Takes action to hold others accountable Level 1: Provides direction and readily participates.