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Relevance and reinvention

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					   Relevance and reinvention




                                                                                                                             BUSINESS
     Tata Management Training Centre is reinventing itself to stay in step with
          changes in the Tata group and the global business environment


A
         t the idyllic campus of Tata Management              increasingly complex and as the Tata group continues to
         Training Centre (TMTC) in Pune, India, it is         increase its global footprint, there has never before been a
          easy to believe that time stands still; with its    greater need for creating global managers for the group.
wooded paths, colonial stone buildings, quaint fountains      This translated into a huge responsibility for the centre.
and antique clocks, the campus exudes an old-world            The result, as TMTC director Chetan Tolia says, is that
charm and etiquette. Nothing in the air suggests that         “TMTC has been compelled to re-invent itself.”
winds of change are sweeping through its hallowed                   The transformation is amply evident in the centre’s
portals. But there is, undoubtedly, a new energy and a        new programmes, the contemporary tone and themes of
renewed sense of purpose at TMTC.                             its courses, its crisp course formats (shorter, smarter),
      Set up by JRD Tata in 1959 with the mission of          the increased use of technology to deliver courses, and,
creating and grooming leaders for the future — it used to     not to forget, the multi-cultural classrooms.
be at one point in its glorious history the training ground         TMTC now offers around 150 programmes every
for officers of the prestigious Indian Administrative         year, conducted by the institution’s in-house faculty of
Services — the centre has, in recent times, taken a long,     eight practice consultants (senior people from the fields
hard look at its own role and relevance vis-à-vis the         of academics and business) and supported by a wide
dynamic global business environment and the changing          network of over 100 experts from the best of Indian and
face of the Tata group. The exercise at soul searching also   international B-schools. Senior Tata managers are also
took into consideration operational changes within            encouraged to take up the role of ‘practitioners-in-
TMTC, including the fact that it had now become a             residence’ to share their experience and expertise
self-sustained economic unit.                                 through specific modules. With its campus thus abuzz
                                                              with activity, TMTC has successfully evoked renewed
Pushing the envelope                                          interest from Tata companies.
     There was a significant takeaway from the exercise at
      introspection: The realisation that as the challenges   Close engagements
           of doing business in a seamless world get               In fact, there is a concerted effort to be more
                                                                           involved with Tata companies, working
                                                                                        closely with them to understand
     their learning needs and to even design courses that are
     customised to a particular company or need. Dedicated
     key account management (KAM) teams comprising
                                                                     Suite of learning
     faculty members are involved in a constant dialogue             The TMTC portfolio of learning and
     with the client companies. “The KAM teams allow                 development programmes includes:
     greater engagement with Tata companies and help us                  Leadership development programmes.
     build better customer connect and customer centricity,”             ‘Learning from the Tata Experience’ series.
     says Milind Pandit, senior practice consultant at TMTC.             Managing business the ‘Theory of
     “This helps us find out their specific needs and provide            Constraints’ way.
     programmes, services or support that they require. Such             Employee engagement and energised
     engagement gives us a deeper insight into the business              workplace programmes.
     challenges and objectives of companies and helps us                 Gurukul series (HR, marketing, operations,
     decide what kind of programmes to offer at TMTC in                  finance, strategy and innovation).
     the following year.”                                                High-impact executive development
           The close interaction with Tata companies has                 programmes.
     resulted in an enriched curriculum that offers                      Scheduled skill development programmes.
     programmes as diverse as the Tata Group Emerging                    Customised programmes.
     Leadership Programme, Global Leadership Programme,                  Internet-based e-delivered programmes.
     Creativity and Personal Mastery, Creating Firms That
     Are Loved and Respected, Strategic Brand Management,
     Strategic HR, CEO Masterclass and so on. The popular               AR@T assumes greater significance in view of the
     Gurukul programme, earlier restricted to a handful of        pace at which the Tata group is growing, widening its
     topics, now boasts a wider repertoire of modules.            global footprint like never before. As Tata companies
           Along with standard courses, TMTC also offers          enter new frontiers and unfamiliar terrains, the TMTC
     customised programmes tailored to suit the specific          team can provide valuable research and insights that
     requirements of Tata companies. “We have been involved       will help them understand and deal with the new
     in a series of programmes exclusively designed for           environments more effectively. Says Tripti Singh, senior
     certain Tata companies. For example, we are at the           practice consultant: “As companies grow and globalise,
     moment working with companies such as Tata Metaliks,         we can provide useful support in areas ranging from
     Tata Consultancy Services, Voltas, Tata Technologies and     market research and behavioural assessment to
     Tata AutoComp Systems to name a few,” says Mr Tolia.         preparing our managers for the challenges in
     “Depending on the need, these programmes have been           approaching new markets.” A recent study, Portability
     conducted on campus or on-site, as one-off instances or      of Tata Managers, looks at how to create Tata managers
     as multi-year engagements.”                                  who can move around the globe and perform
                                                                  effectively wherever in the world they maybe located.
     Growing the knowledge base                                         In the era of rampant globalisation in all fields, it
           Research is another area of core activity, in          is only fitting that a premier institution tasked with
     recognition of the fact that as
     companies grow there is a continuous
     need for knowledge — and less time
     for learning by trial and error.
     TMTC’s faculty engages with external
     research professionals to create a
     robust Applied Research at TMTC
     (AR@T) system. “A key component of
     AR@T is to articulate the experiences
     of Tata companies and their leaders
     and to use this to help a future
     generation of business managers
     learn,” says Mr Tolia. “Besides
     documenting the Tata experience,
     AR@T also enables cross-fertilisation
     of ideas and learning across the
     group,” adds Mr Pandit.                     Tata Management Training Centre offers 150 programmes every year




18   Ta t a R e v i e w J a n u a r y 2 0 1 1
                                                                          Online, in fact, has been an exciting new chapter to
  Telling figures                                                   the TMTC story. “We recently added this powerful tool
                                                                    of reaching people by using technology. These virtual
  Parameters                         FY 2009 FY 2010
                                                                    platforms allow us to reach multiple participants across
  No of programmes                  ~ 50          > 100             geographical locations and time zones. They also help
                                                                    companies cut down learning costs considerably,” says
  No of participants                ~ 1,700       > 3,000
                                                                    Mr Tolia.
  No of learning mandays <5,000                   > 12,500                Currently, the management centre has two
                                                                    different e-platforms. One, a live, virtual classroom,
creating global managers should have global partners                which has been effectively used to deliver the General
as well. TMTC has tied up with Gallup University to                 Essentials of Management, a programme for frontline
offer a series of programmes on people engagement. In               managers who have not been through B-school, to as
collaboration with Goldratt Schools, it offers                      many as 12 batches of participants so far in the 2010-
programmes based on the Theory of Constraints,                      11 academic year. Two, a live video-streaming platform
wherein the focus is on helping companies improve                   that is capable of broadcasting live to a million people
performance by identifying the various constraints that             at the same time, with all the components of an offline
prevent them from achieving their goals.                            session including a classroom, a teacher and a
                                                                    blackboard! Both these platforms have been developed
Virtual access                                                      in association with Tata Communications. A third
      January 2011 will also see the launch of a                    platform, which will bring in telepresence-based
comprehensive line-up of 44 online courses in                       classrooms to enable higher interactivity, is at
association with the Harvard Business School. These                 design stage.
courses, the pilot for which is currently being shared                    After a long gap, non-Tata companies are also being
with learning and development heads at Tata                         invited to participate in TMTC’s journey of learning.
companies for their feedback, will be available to                  Courses at the campus are now open to candidates from
employees through the TMTC website. “With courses                   external companies; that 20 per cent of TMTC revenues
that will be priced as attractive as around `500 per                now comes from these companies goes to show that the
module, the aim is to make quality learning accessible              response from outside of the Tata group has been more
to all Tata employees,” says Mr Pandit. Whereas most                than encouraging. Which is why the KAMs are also
of the courses at TMTC are either by invitation or                  involved in building and nurturing relationships with
nomination, the Harvard courses will be open to all                 external client companies. In addition to the standard set
via the virtual platform.                                           of programmes offered, non-Tata companies are also being
                                                                                      offered customised programmes. “We
                                                                                      have developed exclusive programmes for
                                   VISION                                             companies like NTPC, OnMobile, Bharat
                                 To help develop                                      Forge, Mather & Platt, KPIT and
                          leaders for the Tata group
                                                                                      Crompton Greaves,” says Mr Tolia.
                                                                                             In short, these are busy times at
                               Core activities                                        TMTC and the future promises to be
                                                                                      even more packed with new
               Programmes                        Applied reasearch
       Build leadership capabilities              @ TMTC (AR@T)                       programmes, new modes of learning and
          across levels through                Develop learning assets                new channels of delivering education.
        relevant programmes and               based on Tata experiences
                                            to enrich programme content
                                                                                      Says Mr Tolia: “What makes TMTC
                experiences
                                                                                      unique is that it is not an academic
                                                                                      institution. It is at the intersection of
                               Differentiators                                        learning and practice. It is uniquely
                        TMTC is uniquely positioned                                   placed with privileged access to Tata
                           to deliver this vision by
                                                                                      companies and, therefore, best positioned
                         Enabling                                                     to cross-pollinate ideas within the group.
                                             Propagating
                          cross-
                                             the Tata way                             It is also uniquely placed, given the access
                        pollination
                                                                                      to Tata companies, to collect ‘Tata-ness’,
                                                                                      polish and nourish it, and spread it
                                                                                      across the students that it engages with
The blueprint to develop future leaders                                               every day.”
                                                                                     Sangeeta Menon

                                                                                             Ta t a R e v i e w J a n u a r y 2 0 1 1   19

				
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