Continuing our last discussion on the value of development centres, I was struck by how much the event achieved, over and above its main aim of giving people development that was relevant to their new roles.

Discussing with delegates their feedback reports and helping them set development plans, it became clear to me how valuable the exercise was to create a shared understanding across different cultures and countries of the success criteria of the role. Development centres help build pictures in people’s minds about what success looks like. Achieving consistency across the organisation, especially a huge multinational, is hard but is hugely important not just to create high staff engagement but also high customer satisfaction. It is vital to the brand on a global scale. 

This would be the first customer facing role for about half of the delegates who were the new country managers across Europe. They were highly skilled technically and knew the organisation well. Some had not been in a customer facing role for a while so the chance to practise the competencies and refocus from their previous roles was welcomed. Moreover, the shared understanding of success criteria that the delegates gained would undoubtedly help them manage their teams. 

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Janice Caplan

© Janice Caplan 2019