If people are the Group’s most important asset, then how to develop them to their fullest potential becomes our most important question.
To this end, the Group has introduced a group-wide talent development initiative called the Management Excellence Programme (MEP) to give employees, including senior management, middle managers and executives across the region, the skills to succeed.
The programme aims to support high-potential staff in taking on increasingly complex roles in today’s business world and to help them thrive in the diverse cultural landscapes in which our Group operates.
Engaging in role play and business simulation exercises
The MEP programme is designed for activity-based learning and it offers participants numerous opportunities to contextualise their learning to the real world. For instance, role plays were used where participants’ influencing and negotiation skills were tested in a ‘live’ phone call. Another great example is the financial business simulation board-game introduced in the Leading Organisation session, which allowed the participants to experience the impact of decisions they made when considering financial objectives viz-a-viz other organisational priorities and constraints. These learning activities received the thumbs up from many participants, with feedback telling us that “the exercises enabled [them] to really reflect on [their] negotiation style, strong points, and shortcomings.”
One participant said, “As a middle manager in a sales role, I have to influence subordinates, peers and sometime superiors and customers in order to close a deal, get the information I need, or gain support. After completing the module, I realise there is much more I can do to improve my influencing skills.”
Attending virtual classes and working in groups for action learning
Besides attending 11 days of classroom training facilitated by selected Development Dimensions International (DDI) Leadership Development Professionals, participants are required to take two half-day virtual classes led by DDI via WebEx. This serves as a timely interim review to assess how well participants have applied their learning from the class.
Additionally, participants take on a Group Action Learning Project (ALP), selected from the ideas proposed by the participants themselves. While the teams work on their project independently, the process is supported by a senior management-level Project Sponsor and an internal coach to facilitate their action learning. There are to-date seven active Group ALPs with wide range of topics from the latest IT technology to Supply Chain, Sales and Financials.
Developing our own modules
Out of the 10 modules in MEP, we take pride in developing our very own HR module alongside DDI’s HR modules, which are on Workforce Engagement & Retention and Human Capital Management & Managing Organisational Change. That makes it a total of three modules for a four-day Leading Organisation session.
Our own module is on Employee Lifecycle Management and is a two-day course developed in-house by Olivia Chua, Chief Human Resources Officer and Sally Teo, Regional HRD Manager. The objective is to help participants develop a greater awareness in managing their employees at each stage of the employee’s lifecycle and understand the legal implications and consequences of their actions.
Here’s what our participants had to say about their experience!
"The MEP first session “leading self” focused on creating self-awareness of our strengths & weaknesses as people managers as well as laying down the road ahead towards becoming better leaders and influencers. I especially enjoyed the very practical group activities and roleplay as well as the opportunity to meet and exchange with talented participants from various Jebsen & Jessen entities. Looking forward to the next session which will focus on improving our proficiency in leading our teams!" – Romain Grosjean, Managing Director, Jebsen & Jessen Cambodia.
“One of the most memorable moments of the training happened at the beginning where Per informed us that the Group is investing in all of us participating in the programme. From the expression of the participants, most, if not all are thankful for the investment in our future. I believe that the MEP will not only equip me with the skills to be more effective at work, but also make me a better person in everyday life!"- Si Howe Lim, Project Coordination Manager, JJ-Lurgi