Article: Enabling a network of high performers: Valerie Hausman

Learning & Development

Enabling a network of high performers: Valerie Hausman

Valerie Hausman, Assistant Dean, Global Executive Education, Duke University's Fuqua School of Business
Enabling a network of high performers: Valerie Hausman

As the global business environment has become more complex and unpredictable, organizations are looking for leaders who can adapt well to change, understand interdependencies and know how to scan the horizon and anticipate challenges. It is no longer acceptable to simply have strong functional skills in a particular area or industry. Organizations want their senior leaders to understand how social, environmental, regulatory and cultural dynamics impact their industry and markets.

Our programs are designed to guide managers and leaders to take a step back, consider the broader context and analyze how global markets impact their business, how their business impacts others and how their organization can be successful given the emerging trends in areas like technology, healthcare and manufacturing, among others.

The notion of authentic leadership will continue to resonate, as corporate ethics and transparency are essential elements of business practice. Experiential learning - a way to practice what you have learned and reinforce it - will continue to be an essential and desired component of our programs. There has also been an increase in the number of requests for customized leadership programs for global companies.

This has also made companies conscious of the ROI on such critical investments. ROI can be looked at from two different perspectives - that of the executive education program participant, and that of the organization as a whole.

An individual is likely to measure ROI in terms of investments of time and money relative to increased performance at work and progression in compensation and title over time. The less tangible aspects of ROI include new idea generation, innovative approaches to problem solving and business challenges, and sometimes better global perspective about the complexities of industries, functions and regions. Sometimes, the curriculum of an executive education course results in the participant bringing concrete, actionable plans back to the organization, which results in immediate cost savings or revenue opportunities for the organization and recognition for the individual. More often than not, however, the greatest benefit is in a broader, more global perspective and a new professional network of high performing leaders who share best practices and inject a sense of energy and a renewed commitment to performance in the participant.

For an organization considering investments in executive education, ROI can be measured in terms of the obvious metrics such as staff retention, internal mobility of leaders, promotion and career progression and bottom line financial results. It is often found that organizations which benefit most from such investments tend to be those committed to talent development over the long run. This commitment creates an atmosphere where employees feel valued and part of a broader community. Executive education exposes an organization’s talent to emerging leadership and management trends, global business challenges and an opportunity to learn best practices.

Topics: Learning & Development, Performance Management, Strategic HR

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