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first_img Comments are closed. Previous Article Next Article This month’s networkHow to innovate Almost every company follows a cycle that swings between expansion andcontraction (Slice of Life, Training Magazine, June 2001). As night followsday, after a period of rationalisation, whether of systems or personnel, itwonders where the next round of growth is going to come from. The next question is, why aren’t our people more innovative? The answer is that most big companies don’t allow them to be. They areidea-killers, not generators. Bureaucratic decision processes, rigid budgets,reward systems that punish risk taking, likewise career structures, politicalinfighting – any one of these can kill a good idea stone dead on the spot. Small wonder that except in a very few cases entrepreneurs would run a milerather than join a big firm. With this kind of energy deficit, a fewbrainstorming sessions are unlikely to provide useful answers. Unless the company can turn itself into a “venture engine”, inwhich generating ideas is part of its business model, periodic drives to boostentrepreneurial goals and innovation will yield little. People know from bitterexperience that at the first sign of a slowdown, managers will revert tocontraction mode, slashing budgets and head counts. New projects and peripheral activities – where most innovation comes from –are the first casualties. As this suggests, innovation is only secondarily a matter of inventing newproducts. It is, above all, an attitude of mind at top-management level. Simon Caulkin Editor-in-chief, FTdynamo.com Red tape binds MAs The analysis on Modern Apprenticeships (Training Magazine, June 2001)highlighted some interesting concerns. Within Birmingham City Council, the Department of Leisure and Culture hassuccessfully trained and retained eight Modern Apprentices ranging from libraryassistants, to horticultural trainees and play workers, over the past threeyears. The support from both managers and trainers has been phenomenal, butwhat stops the department from carrying on this successful programme is thehuge volume of paperwork that needs to be completed and the bureaucracy thatexists when trying to access the funding. We have all learnt so much from the process, but find the red tape bothtime-consuming and demotivating. Claire Riley Personnel officer, Leisure and Culture, Birmingham City Council Trainer input will make e-learning a success While e-learning continues to increase in popularity among organisations of alltypes, there is a risk that the effectiveness of many e-learning programmes isbeing undermined due to insufficient trainer-input in the development andimplementation. The best way to launch e-learning programmes is in a classroom sessionsupported by a trainer, either present or online. This ensures that, at thefirst session, learners spend sufficient time to make good initial progress sothat self-starting will be easier next time. Steve Dineen CEO and joint founder, Fuel Related posts:No related photos. NetworkOn 1 Jul 2001 in Personnel Todaylast_img

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