Putting the Pieces Together – For Enterprises and Individuals
Twenty years of experience have taught us that training programs are only effective when they’re tightly integrated into a broader business strategy, and when they make change personal for every participant.
That’s why our programs place equal importance on the enterprise and the individual – we’ve found that it’s the best path to catalyzing positive change.
In practice, this means choosing the right learning objectives, making content and experiences relevant to participants' jobs, reinforcing new behaviors, and providing facilitation and coaching just where needed.
Our use of organization-specific Strategic Competencies is a key element. By defining specific leadership behaviors that support your unique culture and business strategy, we can teach skills that strengthen the organization and prepare participants to succeed (read more about Strategic Competencies).
By the same token, we focus on Simulation-Based Learning because it’s the fastest, most effective way to train professionals to face new challenges. They face real-life scenarios and cultural tensions, and the type of dilemmas they’ll encounter going forward, so the lessons are immediately applicable – and enjoyable to learn (read more about Simulation-Based Learning).
Here are some other ways our programs serve both organizations and individuals:
We emphasize up-front research into our clients’ business situations, challenges, and culture, because it enables us to develop strategically relevant program scenarios. When participants experiment with different strategies and compare results across teams, the lessons learned are applicable to your business environment.
Success can almost always be achieved via multiple paths, so our simulations encourage and reward testing of alternative responses to changing conditions. This develops individual and enterprise agility, and helps your leaders prepare to deal with an uncertain future.
Example: We explored a range of plausible supply-chain scenarios in a strategy-testing simulation for a solar industry supplier.
Research shows that we learn new skills most effectively when we’re motivated by an immediate need. That’s why our programs incorporate skills-based training modules just when they are required for tasks at hand – participants quickly benefit from what they’ve learned, and internalize the knowledge.
Together with our partners, we can provide expert training in a range of quickly applicable competencies: financial acumen, sustainability integration, decision-making, strategy, change agility, collaboration, sustainability assessment, and more.
Example: For Nike's Line of Sight program, we created a finance workshop that prepared leaders to create shareholder value in the edge, Inc. simulation.
Coaching, Feedback, and Facilitation
Program participants maximize their learning when they get personal input from experienced coaches and facilitators, like those in WholeWorks’ partner network. We support the experiential learning process by asking questions and pointing participants to sources of information, rather than providing answers.
Pre-program personal coaching sessions help participants learn to assimilate feedback from multi-rater assessments and other instruments. We help managers identify specific learning objectives for practice field sessions. During simulations, we form learning trios within teams as a safe way for participants to share same-day feedback about effective and ineffective behavior.
Example. For Starwood's Leadership Development Experience, we used both individual coaching and team facilitation to enhance participants' personal development.
Aligned Metrics and Language
Our business simulations incorporate the same decision-making information used by your organization. This provides an effective way of familiarizing managers with new metrics, language, dashboards, and reporting approaches, and their application to on-the-job choices.
Simulations are also a great way to align your organizational around new terminology, as participants connect words with concepts while doing business in the virtual world. This common experience can be a powerful catalyst for organizational change.
Example: Nike leaders learned the true meaning of Return on Invested Capital (ROIC) by experiencing through simulation the broad effects of better financial decision-making.
WholeWorks leadership development extends into helping program participants apply their new skills on the job. This includes working with executives to sponsor and support newly-trained teams tackling innovative projects.
Our online learning platform facilitates ongoing coaching, and provides discussion forums where teams can compare notes, share progress, and help one another – so your training investment translates into tangible results.
Example: In Nike’s Line of Sight program, some divisions added a follow-up project where participants applied new financial knowledge to estimate the value created by a change initiative in their area.
Our participants tell us that making personal connections - with managers across their organizations and senior executives - is one of the most valuable elements of live leadership programs. They also appreciate interactive sessions where senior executives share news, outline strategy, answer questions, or teach content.
While nothing can replace a face-to-face meeting, our modern online learning platform helps participants meet and interact with senior leaders virtually, wherever they are located. Online networking can expand participants' network of contacts and provide quick access to uploaded information. We work with each client to create the right combination of networking opportunities in live, online, or hybrid programs.
Options for Program Customization
Every WholeWorks program is tailored to client-specific learning objectives and delivery needs. Options include:
- Telescoping program length. Programs can run from hours to days (or weeks for online MOOCs), depending on your objectives.
- Strategic alignment of learning objectives. We work with you up front to clarify (and distill) your learning objectives and help you align those objectives with your core business strategy.
- Custom workshop content. We can customize both learning content and delivery, drawing on our network of experts or your internal subject matter leaders.
- Train-the-trainer. We can train facilitators from your organization to deliver a program after they've experienced it for themselves.
- Live, online, or hybrid programs. Our online learning platform can "bookend" a live program to facilitate pre-work and post-work. We can also provide fully online programs delivered as multi-week MOOCs to large audiences, or deliver online mini-workshops, team facilitation, discussion forums, cross-team benchmarking, and applied projects. Learn more about scalable delivery options >