Finnish Association of Business School Graduates (Suomen Ekonomiiliitto SEFE) ordered a research from Jyväskylä School of Business and Economics focusing on competence development especially from employer perspective. The aim of the research was to:
- Reflect the attitudes of the employers regarding competence development
- Find out how competence development is really done in organizations
- Employers also state that the employees are not that interested in competence development, and the employees say the offering of development possibilities do not meet their needs. Could these aspects be related to one another?
Interesting findings aren´t they? There are for example some differences about what are considered as the most effective methods of learning. What is actually effectiveness in competence development? Probably it means that the starting point for example management development is both the student and his/her organisation. In order to be effective, the learning experience has to be closely connected to the students’ personal development needs, as well as those of their organisation. Effectiveness also means maximising the impact of learning. Learning has to lead to actions that have effects on the ways in which organisations and individuals work.
We argue that the skill and act of applying the concepts learned should be seen as a systemic and continuous flow of actions that involves interaction with various stakeholders. Are we as effective as possible when it comes down to education and development?
Here´s another idea inspired by the research. Respondents are perhaps surprisingly happy about the development possibilities offered by their companies. Based on the research everything seems to be quite well. If that wasn´t the case, they wouldn´t be answering like this now would they? However we would like to challenge you a little bit: Do we actually demand enough from ourselves and from our organisations? Do we take the effort to totally renew your thinking instead of just updating? Do we take competence development seriously enough?
So the next time you are thinking about the future of yourself and our organisation, you could ask:
- How well have you been able to renew your paradigms and how deeply and actively have you applied the learned things in practice?
- What is your investment strategy for competence development, on organisational level, on a personal level?
Any comments and ideas about his blog post, for or against, are more than welcome!
Pasi Aaltola Anna Hartikainen
Director, MBA Education Researcher
Full research report (139 pages, in Finnish):
Ekonomien ammatillisen osaamisen kehittäminen -työnantajien asenteet ja panostukset