Targeted leadership training programs helps raise employee satisfaction
The leadership challenge faced by CPF Board managers was in leading a diverse group of knowledge workers of different age groups and cultural backgrounds towards a common vision.
The situation was further intensified when the supervisors’ index of the 2008 employee satisfaction survey declined by 4% from 2006. Senior Deputy Director of Capability & Organization Development reflected that this downturn was largely due to the rapid growth and expansion in those two years. Leadership training thus became necessary to ensure employees felt supported and were effectively engaged in a team.
The next question was, how do we accomplish that?
A Supervisory Management Skills program was specifically tailored for the supervisors and line managers to align leadership goals with the values and philosophy of the organization through addressing real issues faced by the managers in the organization.
Another program, Leading Effective Teams, was developed for the IT professionals who were leading teams of culturally diversed people. The program taught them effective communication and relationships building skills when facing people of different cultural backgrounds and personalities.
The impact of this leadership development initiative was evident when another employee satisfaction survey was conducted in 2010 – Supervisors’ Index had increased by 2%! Furthermore, 4 out of 10 most favorable items on the survey were related to the quality of supervisors (up from zero in 2008) and none of the least favorable items were supervisors-related (down from five in 2008).
By early 2010, the supervisors and managers had made radical improvement in goal setting, delegating, coaching, and empowering their direct reports. In doing so, they were able to change employees’ attitudes, influence their behavior, and effectively motivate employees.
Dedication to an integral people development strategy crowned UOB Group an award winner
In 2009 and 2010, UOB Group was the Best Award Winner from American Society Training & Development over a period of two consecutive years.
The award proved UOB’s focus on sucessfully implementing a People Development strategy in line with the group to increase its leadership potentials, especially for its middle management level.
Journey to Success
Since the establish of a Learning Centre in 2008, NBOGroup had worked with UOB Buana to produce hundreds of corporate development and engagement programs for all levels over a period of 3 years.
Some key programs include:
- Supervisory Development Programs: Targeted at supervisors and team leaders to equip them with the leadership tools and concepts to better manage, coach and mentor their people.
- Management Associate Development Programs: To prepare potential candidates to be future leaders of the organization.
- Special development programs for non-business sectors which focused on developing skills and competencies including teamwork, effective communication, motivation, delegation, problem solving and conflict resolution.
- Various soft skill training programs which covered thousands of UOB Buana’s employees.
Participants’ response were spectacular. According to Head of UOB Buana Learning and Development, participants had felt that the programs were applicable to their daily business challenges and had helped them in advancing their careers. In fact, they rated NBOGroup programs an average of 4.8 out of 5 in Training Methodology, Quality of the Trainers and Training Effectiveness.
Cultivating a people-focused organization culture through complete 360 degree feedback process
In 2008, LTA needed to grow a culture within the organization that was in line with the vision of their newly launched masterplan – a culture which placed service to people on par with task achievement.
The 360 degree feedback tool was sought to accomplish this goal.
The NBOGroup 360 Feedback tool uses a dual scale frequency gap methodology which allows for effective scalability of the 360 feedback survey across an entire organization. From 2006 to 2009, three 360 feedback surveys were carried out and a total of 314 LTA employees at different management levels participated.
Participants received feedback on competencies that were core to the organization’s masterplan, such as their ability to communicate a vision, provide clear directions, encourage creative thinking, and give constructive feedback. This allowed participants to recognize their strengths and identify areas for improvement with respect to the organization’s needs.
Gaining awareness of one’s own strengths and weaknesses was only the first step. Each participant also received individual coaching from a professional NBO coach to help with their personal development based on their 360 feedback results.
In 2010, specific training programs were rolled out to target the group’s greatest development needs.
Individual participants had commented on the usefulness of the 360 degree feedback results and the complementing training programs.
Over the three-year period, the average gap size for all participants had decreased in every competency – a positive observation in dual scale 360s where smaller gap sizes indicate strengths.
Robust 360 degree feedback process leads to measurable improvements in leadership competencies
A Senior Vice President of the Sembcorp Group of companies has a powerful story to tell about his own personal development journey.
The story began in December 2003 when he participated in an NBOGroup 360 degree feedback survey as part of a Leadership Development Program. A second identical survey was done in September 2004 to measure whether tangible progress had been achieved.
Journey of Self-Awareness & Development
From his 360 feedback results and DISC profile, the senior executive was able to gain self-awareness. He realized that his personality style could impact current business issues and that different people could have varied perceptions of him.
He identified specific behaviors that he needed to change in his interaction with people. A series of practices and conscious effort was put in place in for his development plan. He also received a lot of coaching and support from his wife in achieving those targets.
With a robust 360 degree feedback process, the ability to be aware and acknowledge the changes required, and motivation to become a more effective leader, the senior executive showed significant improvements in every leadership competency measured in a second 360 feedback survey ten months later.
In fact, his results were so significant that our NBOGroup Director, Gary Nelson, requested a personal interview to learn exactly how he had achieved such outstanding results in less than one year.