A Letter from the GM
||A letter from Damien O'Donoghue, GM of GCA, on GCA's first-year anniversary. click here to read more!
Profile: Sherol Fernandes - GCA Human Resource Development Executive
GCA's newest member and HRDE. Previously the Senior IT Trainer &
Quality Analyst at IBM, Bangalore, Sherol's expertise in training are a
welcome addition to the GCA team. click here to read more!
Waleed Jameel on Cascading Strategies
||Here is the
third in Waleed's three-part series on strategy- from its importance to
its alignment, and now on to cascading the strategy down through every
member of your team. Click to read more!
In a League of Their Own: The GLO Masterclass
Masterclass has brought together our GLO's from around world, to share
knowledge, best practices and ideas on the GCA LMS. Click to read more!
Dear GAC World,
We’ve had a very successful first year – our offerings speak for
themselves, our participants speak for us, and the caliber of our GLO’s
speaks on our behalf. This success would not have been possible without
your tremendous support, from the top management down, we’ve been very
widely accepted – our flagship induction course IGW has been deemed
critical by many and the demand is very high.
We’ve got a lot more outlined for 2008 – GCA is the transmission
station for the GAC Spirit and the new 5 year Vision Y – Global Values
strategy plan. Beyond 2008, we have ground breaking programmes in our
major business areas, like the Graduate Shipping Programme and Vision Y
Strategy Workshops, details of which we’ll be releasing soon.
We would like to thank our client operating companies who have
participated in the training and development of GAC’s global values
which are linked to higher performance – a much sought-out Vision Y
trait. We would also like to thank our valuable GCA Liaison Officers who
are our representatives in the many parts of the world. And finally, to
our participants, without whom we have no purpose. Thank you for
wanting to learn.
GM of GAC Corporate Academy
Profile: GCA HRDE Sherol Fernandes
As GCA’s HRDE, Sherol manages the GCA Value Chain, ensuring rapid
client feedback, handling course nominations, scheduling, loading, and
Sherol’s previous position was of Senior IT Trainer & Quality
Analyst at IBM, Bangalore, and her experience in training are a welcome
addition to the GCA team.
“In my previous organization we would work with the Operations and
Training managers to assess and evaluate training requirements for
both, the existing staff and the new recruits. After putting all this
in writing, we would have a module designed, content written, dates
set and teams divided to carry this out successfully. This would be
your regular classroom training with students ranging from a minimum
of 3 to a max of 10 members. This way we could ensure individual
attention as well.
My previous experience allows for me to introduce new ideas and
approaches to convey effective and individual-specific knowledge.
However, GCA goes a little deeper (I’d say closer to the roots).
Previously, we would simply evaluate and specify what we would need
to polish and perfect. Here, we actually design new training modules
and introduce effective ways of launching them. Not to mention the
Global audience we target. It’s definitely much bigger! I’m actually
helping run an academy here!
Like any new idea in the business world or even in a community, if
you will, there will be those who will readily accept and support.
There will be more who will highlight the cons rather than the pros.
Our challenge here is to explain how the pros that we achieve can
easily overcome the cons in the business. I believe that
understanding the clientele and the market along with establishing
good relations, contributes a great deal to achieving such results.
My previous experiences have been in IBM and Dell, and both
organizations exhibit an excellent blend of working individuals. I
particularly liked the transparency that existed amongst associates
and the effect of team work. I strongly believe that nothing can beat
working together as one unit and I would like to sum it up this way,
‘Snowflakes are one of nature's most fragile things, but just look
at what they can do when they stick together.”
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Smart Moves: Cascading Strategies
|By Waleed Jameel
In last month's column, we discussed the powerful outcomes that can be
achieved when all company resources are aligned to the corporate
strategy. In the process of alignment, the overall strategy is shared
with all stakeholders, ranging from the Vice President of the company to
the Sales Executive on the ground. The corporate strategy is the
overall strategy of the company, however, each of the departments needs
to have their own strategy that fits within the big picture- this is
the strategy not only makes it seem clearer for the people working to
achieve it, but also lends a sense of ownership and pride in its
Let's say we're addressing a company's strategy towards existing
customers- at a higher level, this may translate into the number of
customer needs fulfilled, as measured by percentages or services
offered. At an operational level- this strategy applies to different
people within the company differently. For Customer Service
representatives, this may mean new processes to handle customer
relations. For Marketing representatives, this may mean a more
detailed campaign to inform consumers of what services are offered to
those people already holding accounts. For Account Managers, this
may mean a re-analysis of existing customer accounts to identify
potential areas of service. All of these fit within the greater
strategic goal, and these are all examples of how a larger strategy is
cascaded down into smaller, more department-specific objectives.
When strategic objectives come from on high, people can sometimes see
themselves as being imposed upon. Compare this to a more dynamic
perspective on the situation- when met with general company goals,
you view yourself as an interpreter rather than a victim. You have
the option of plotting the objective to your resource map, specifying
it to your skill-set or team, and essentially, making it your own.
Whether as wide as a departmental level, or as specific as the
team-level, determining how different parties with different skills
can contribute to the overall end objective is essential to getting
Cascading the strategy not only makes it seem clearer for the people
working to achieve it, but also lends a sense of ownership and pride
in its achievement. On a very simple level, think of the difference
in treatment when property is rented versus owned. Ownership bestows a
sense of concern for the well-being and positive outcome, whether it
be for strategy or property. In the case of corporate strategy,
ownership leads to a more optimal design and implementation of the
objectives at the local operational level.
Speaking on corporate strategy, a Fortune 500 CEO once noted how
delighted he was that his entire country wide workforce would spend
at least an hour each month reviewing strategy metrics via the
monthly newsletter. He viewed this single hour as the most important
hour of the month, which brought everyone together (alignment),
allowed people to reflect changes at their local level (cascaded
strategy) and work far more effectively and efficiently.
When you share your strategy with your team members, invite them to
share their perspectives on how to successfully implement that
strategy. By pooling these ideas, you will be able to create an
operational strategy map unique to your resource and skill-set. And
because your team helped create it, it will lend an element of
responsibility in its accomplishments.
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In a League of Their Own: The GLO Masterclass
Fifty GLO’s from the GAC world are currently enrolled in the GLO
Masterclass- an advanced learning community and forum for GCA Liaison
Officers worldwide. In this unique forum, GLO’s have come together
to share their accumulated wisdom in terms of best practices for
training, evaluating nominations, and assisting GAC personnel in
ongoing career development.
Vision Y- Global Values- GAC’s five year strategy plan, outlines a
series of initiatives that include focused development of human
resources throughout the GAC world. “GCA is a prime example of one of
these initiatives,” said Tom Johnston, a GLO as well as facilitator
for IGW- Introduction to GAC World. “The company has placed a very
high priority on employees having access to GCA and using GCA to
develop and enhance their skills to be able to meet the challenge of
change in the future.”
Chiranthi Paranamanage, a GLO from GAC Sri Lanka said, “Transcending
geographical boundaries, we can use GAC group synergies to strengthen
our market presence in the regions we operate in; and GCA is the
undisputed platform on which we can communicate in one language – the
language of VYGV.
“For our GLO’s,” says Waleed Jameel, Operations Manager of GCA,
“This means a global resource of knowledge, and for the rest of GAC,
it means more effective, more in-tune, and more knowledgeable links to
“Our first year we established the GLO’s,” Waleed concluded “And
now, in our second year, we are taking the GLO community to a higher
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