Provides consulting services to improve business processes

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Reference no: EM131441193

Scott Rock Consultants (SRC) is a professional services firm that provides consulting services to improve business processes. Many of SRC services fall under the areas of organizational design, work-flow analysis, efficiency improvement, and leveraging technology to improve business outcome effectiveness. Founded over 40 years ago by Wes Scott and Eli Rock, SRC, is similar to other firms of this type (e.g., law or accounting firms) in that the same people who sell the services are also those that do the work. As in a large law firm, the more senior professionals manage junior professionals. Most SRC professionals have an MBA degree or advanced degree in the Human Resources or Operations Management field. SRC has a wide range of clients, who vary in size and industry. Each client is sold to and serviced by an SRC professional, referred to as an account manager. Depending on the size of the account, the account manager might have a few junior people helping on the account. Account managers for the bigger accounts are called Key Account Managers (KAM). Each KAM might be handling three or four accounts at one time while also trying to sell services into new accounts. Each KAM might lead a team of about eight professionals. Therefore, each KAM might have two to four professionals on the team to help service each account. Many SRC professionals aspire to become a KAM. Skills alone are not enough to succeed as a KAM; for example, KAMs also appear to be highly collaborative and self-directed. There are three Sales VPs, who each oversee five District Managers, who each oversee six KAMS (plus other account managers). The pressure on each KAM had increased in recent years both from competition and fewer dollars being spent by companies for these types of services. While their professional training prepared them to service accounts, KAMs were never really trained to be expert salespeople. They were given some basic sales training, as well as management and leadership training, before they first became account managers. For the 90 KAMs at SRC, this might have been 10 to 12 years ago. SRC tells potential clients that they often need an outside firm, such as SRC, to help them identify and improve their processes. Luke Bradford, CEO of SRC, decided to do what they preach and ask an outside person or firm to help them increase sales among their KAMs. Christina Lopez, VP of Human Resources, has asked you in to design and develop a holistic training and development program for these KAMs. She tells you the following: “Through networking, Luke decided to approach Sean and Geri Johnson, a husband and wife team to develop the training. After listening to their ideas for a needs analysis, Luke said, ‘The needs analysis you suggest will take too long. I can give you input from our client satisfaction survey and you can speak to our 3 Sales VPs. I am in a hurry to get something done as soon as possible. I think, no, I want this to be an in person training session. They get too much of the online training, always on their laptops taking self paced stuff. I am going to invite 30 KAMs. Each VP will have their five District Managers pick two KAMS to invite.’ The Johnsons moved quickly and developed an overview design for the training, showed it to Luke who then said it was okay to go ahead and book the conference space. The training will be called: Key Account Management Program (KAMP).” Christina continued, “This all happened in the two weeks I went on vacation. When I returned, Luke apologized for not waiting until I got back, but he wanted to get everything rolling. I asked him a few questions about how the consultants would ensure this training would incorporate all the activities both before and after the event to make it successful. He did not know the answer; so we called the Johnsons. They said my concern was a good one, but they specialize in creating the learning event itself and not all the best practices that go along with it. At that point, Luke fired them and told me to get someone to help with this project.” Christina then tells you the constraints you are up against: ? KAMP is scheduled for six weeks from now; it will be two full days long. HRM 537 Employee Learning and Professional/Career Development Spring 2017 Page 2 ? The conference center is booked: one large plenary space to hold all 30 attendees in a theater style (in fact the room is so large, it can hold up to 100 people) and six breakout rooms with one round table each (which can seat up to 8 people). Every meeting room in the conference center is fully equipped with the latest technology. It is a great venue, including wifi everywhere, an onsite chef, and elegant dining room. All of the conference space is reserved for all two days – it is fine if you decide not to use all of the rooms for the entire two days. ? The 15 District Managers each invited two KAMS, but nothing else was said about the event except to book any travel arrangements necessary to attend it. ? The three VPs and the 15 District Managers were not sure if they were invited, but are holding the dates on their calendar. The good news is that the conference center does have extra sleeping rooms for these people if we decide to invite them. Christina shows you the design document the Johnson’s created: Module InstructorActivity Trainee Activity Time DAY 1 Strategy for the next five years; Presentation Listening 9 – 11 am Break 11 – 11:20 am Objectives of the program Presentation Listening 11:20 – 11:30 am Client perspective (review of client satisfaction results) Discussion Listening, participating 11:30 – 12:00 pm Lunch 12:00 – 1 pm Influence Selling Skills Presentation, video, group discussion Listening, observing, responding 1 – 5 pm (includes a break around 2:30 pm) NetworkingDinner Participating 6 pm – 10 pm Day 2 NegotiationWorkshop Presentation, video, group discussion Listening, observing, responding 8:30 – 12:30 pm (includes a break around 10 am) Lunch 12:30 – 1:30 pm Working on your own account Time keeping Participating,providing guidance (KAMs sit in small groups and discuss how to apply the learning to their own accounts) 1:30 – 3:30 pm Wrap up Presentation and AnswerQuestions Listing and asking questions 3:30 – 4:30 (Note: program end at 4:30) Christina also mentions: “While we told the KAMs the start and stop time for each day, we have yet to tell them anything else. We can change the design of the program and add any important pre and post activities and reinforcement.” HRM 537 Employee Learning and Professional/Career Development Spring 2017 Page 3 Christina provides some additional important information: ? She read the client satisfaction surveys and called the VPs of sales. The surveys and the VPs confirmed the two main skill areas for the KAMS are Influencing Selling Skills and Negotiation. The VPs all agreed a third area was almost as important: Team Motivation. The VPs felt the KAMs do not even realize the importance of motivating the members of their teams. ? Besides the possible omission of the topic of motivation (and the fact that the participants would be sitting most of the morning on the first day just hearing lectures), Christina thought the design looked good (but admitted she was not a training expert). She liked the amount of time allocated for the segments on influencing and negotiation, networking, and working on their own account. ? Luke is willing to spend money on this program and feels that the money spent will be returned with greater sales. Therefore, we can take a more comprehensive approach beyond just this training event. ? We have six weeks before KAMP. We can, for example, send more messages or quickly create selfpaced training or send post-session information to everyone’s Smartphone. While Luke thinks there is too much self-paced training, most of the KAMs are Gen X and like it. ? Christina knows external people who can develop training materials on all these topics and can give them access to Subject Matter Experts (SMEs). She even knows external facilitators who can run most of the training (although they do not know SRC). In essence, there are people who can execute on any design we give them. So while we cannot cancel the classroom training, there is so much you can do to make it successful!

Please answer each of the following 5 questions.

Question 1 : What specifically should be done to ensure that KAMP is successful (e.g., it provides KAMs with the appropriate skills, knowledge, and abilities; it keeps the skills alive after the event, it leads to the transfer of training to the job and long-term results)? For example, What should be done before the KAMP event; during the KAMP event; after the KAMP event? Your response should include specific actions to take as well as rationale for your ideas by citing any of the class reading/material). Note: Your response should not include collecting more needs analysis information (save this for Question 5).

Question 2 ( Please indicate what should be done to make the skill development modules (such as Influencing and Negotiation) successful; for example: who is involved in developing the modules, facilitating them, types of activities, any use of breakout rooms

Question 3 Specifically, how will we provide the KAMs with training on motivating their team? Please state your rationale for your approach - including citing any class/reading material. Be sure to indicate if this training is at KAMP or not.

Question 4 If Luke decides to invite any of the VPs or District Managers to the two days of training, what role should they play? Why?

Question 5 Besides what was done, what else would you have added to the needs analysis?

Reference no: EM131441193

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