Leaders as Teachers

Betof, Edward
July 2010
Leaders As Teachers - Business Book Summaries;7/12/2010, Vol. 1 Issue 1, p1
Book Summary
Book Summary
In 2000, Becton, Dickinson and Company was competing in a medical technology market that was much different than the one it had grown up in. The current market was fully globalized, and regulations were changing significantly, along with customer buying patterns. In his foreword to Leaders as Teachers, Ed Ludwig, CEO of BD, explains that an organizational profile conducted around that time showed him and his executive team that �not everyone [in the company] knew where we were going.� They recognized that other companies had established more effective and consistent learning and development strategies and that they had to start allocating more resources to talent management and associate and leadership development in order to avoid being at a �competitive disadvantage� in the new circumstances. BD�s existing L&D infrastructure had to be revamped. To this end, the executive team made one of their three millennial growth strategies the �strengthening [of] organizational, leadership, and associate capabilities.� The specific learning strategy that resulted centered on the concept of BD associates teaching their cohorts in �live, face-to-face� settings. A leaders-as-teachers program serves as a catalyst for the learning and development of the leaders and associates who participate as students. More learning and development benefits both the associates and the company as a whole. Students in the program learn the company�s core set of values and have opportunities to practice skills and behaviors first in the safe classroom environment and to receive feedback from leaders to whom they would not normally report. This encourages creative problem solving. The program strengthens an organization�s culture and its lines of communication by encouraging continuous learning, providing the tools to raise issues and solve problems, and fostering cross-functional and cross-cultural ties among diverse...


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