dinsdag 31 augustus 2010

Learn from the guilds

Up to the industrial revolution, guilds were common for craftsmen to preserve craftsmanship, quality, fair wages and solid markets. During the industrial revolution craftsman were replaced by workers and machines and guilds nearly died out, except for a few folklore guilds that survived.

As from the industrial revolution organizational performance improvement was only focused on increase productivity through smarter machines and by scientific management on processes. At the end of 19th century and beginning of the 20th century, it was not common for industrial companies to invests in education nor in fair rewards for their employees. After social troubles workers received better payments and as a side effect markets increased surprisingly. Successes with scientific management increased the distribution of management, and by adapting ideas of people like Max Weber, organizations became more and more bureaucratic organized ran by those professional managers. But what happened with the competency development of the skilled workforce?

Although increasing complexity of work and machines, knowledge workers like ICT-employees are still treated in a rather scientific management manner. If people do not perform as desired or if they are moved to a new position, they could (if lucky) get a training associated with their jobs. But next it is often up to them to improve their own performance.
It is a fact that high performance organizations put more emphasis on people and processes rather than on organizational structures and management power and influences.

Organizations that invest in people and their competences are far more successful, profitable and reliable to their customers than organizations that don’t. Those organizations possesses often comprehensive training plans, to train their staff on appropriate skills, knowledge and process abilities needed to fulfill their jobs.

Let’s get back to the guilds, isn’t it much more effective if a modern master craftsmen (experts) could mentor journeymen (intermediate employees) and those journeymen could educate apprentices (junior employees). It would be far more convenient and logical if crafts maintains their own competence standards than if this has to be done by an ignorant manager.

This practice of the guilds happens already within some professions where groups are gathering and establish their own competence standards. Examples are the Open Group with TOGAF for the ICT architects of PMI with PMP for project managers.

Why don’t organizations learn from these best practices from the past and reinvent the guild principles? It could be applied to all employees, including managers, for their competence development and professionalism.

vrijdag 27 augustus 2010

Stelling: Leuk dat career development, ik raak er alleen maar goede mensen mee kwijt!

  • In een tijd van economische crisis is er geen ruimte voor career development!
  • De goeden gaan, en de minder goede blijven, ik richt mij liever op de laatste categorie, dan gaan ze misschien wel weg!
Graag hoor ik jullie mening?

Stelling: Mensen die heel bewust aan career planning doen zijn op zichzelf gericht en niet op hun bedrijf

  • Waarom zou ik als bedrijf investeren in de carrière van mijn medewerkers? Dat moeten ze zelf maar doen!
  • Is dat mogelijk dan, open en eerlijk met je medewerkers over carriere praten?
Graag hoor ik jullie mening?