The assessments or analysis of management training and development needs can be undertaken at different levels of generalization. This has many methodological and organizational implications.
Training Needs at Different Levels
Here we will confine ourselves to a short description of each level:
1. Individual Level
This is the starting point and basic building block of any needs assessment.
Every employee has unique needs owing to the background, experience, and personality.
Emphasis on individual needs assessment makes it possible to have development programs that are tailored to individual needs and aim at results that are visible and understandable to each individual concerned and for which he can feel responsible.
2. Group and Team Level
To identify and meet needs, we also have to group employees for the following reasons: 1. while some of their needs are individual and unique, other needs are common, 2. as mentioned above, employees do not work as isolated individuals, but in groups and teams: this brings out needs that could not be identified in dealing with each other individual separately.
Also, needs that concern relations and interaction with other employees often have to be treated through collective training and development.
Therefore, at the second level, we would deal with groups and teams of employees within an organization.
The nature of the management system and process will determine the criterion for establishing these groups and teams.
Typically, managers directly associated with an important activity or with a project that cuts across the limits of several organizational units will have common needs and should be treated as a team although they belong to various units like marketing managers and sales supervisors within the marketing department.
3. Organization Level
This level is particularly important for relating management development and training needs to organizational systems problems, diagnoses, objectives, and performance improvement programs.
In practice, most need assessment exercises to take place at the organization level and include the two previous levels as their components.
To meet the need, may organizations design and implement their own management development and training programs.
Typically organization-level management development needs are those related to organizational (corporate) culture.
Organizations that have developed a set of shared values, constituting their strengthing this value system, in particular in training newly recruited and junior managers and staff members.
4. Sectoral Level
A The definition of sectoral needs may be quite meaningful if a sectoral development policy or plan is being considered, or if a sectoral body (like employees or trade association, or a ministry) intends to alert organizations in the sector to their management problems or to imbalances in the managerial manpower supply and demand, and provide a service for dealing with these problems (like, a sectoral training institution or special ad hoc programs).
5. Country or National Level
In a similar vein, we are often interested in common nationwide characteristics and needs of the management population, in planning or suggesting country-level programs or in establishing national management institutes, centers, faculties, or foundations.
Typically, country-level needs are examined by national surveys and studios.
Often, these surveys would also use a sectoral breakdown, differentiate between regions ( like, urban and rural, less or more developed, geographically remote) and consider needs as classified under major occupations or functions (like, financial managers, marketing managers) that are found in most enterprises.
6. Regional Level
Regional aspects and considerations are of interest it regional programs, projects, or institutions that can provide useful guidance and support to governments and private organizations in individual countries of the region.
For example, the European foundation for management development has undertaken several projects looking into the future needs of the Asian productivity organization has been to meet training and development needs in conjunction with efforts to improve productivity in Asian countries.
7. Global Level
This is the highest level of generalization in respect of training and development needs.
A global, worldwide view tends to be taken selectivity by associations or institutions involved in the exchange of experience, information services, or new program development of the widest international interest.
The globalization of world markets, the current trends in financial business and trade or the progress in information and communication technologies are regarded as factors that will influence management in all regions and countries, hence the existence of global needs, and an opportunity to think of policies, programs, and services that are global in application.
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