Education as a Strategic Advantage

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In this white paper, Hirschey describes how companies committed to ongoing professional education empower people to become internal knowledge experts for specific processes. Strategic education also broadens an individual’s understanding of how those processes interact with other business activities. Functional silos are broken down, and people create an expanded personal networking within the company.

Hirschey explains the differences between education and training. He cites, with case examples, the downfalls of relying only on training, especially when transforming and improving business processes.

“A training mindset results in a training curriculum only loosely associated with current strategic objectives, or not at all,” Hirschey writes.

Hirschey presents an education model, the Oliver Wight Proven Path, which has been used successfully for more than 40 years in business process transformation and improvement. He provides guidance on choosing an optimal blend of public coursesprivate courses, and coaching, and cascade education. The pros and cons of each approach are detailed.

“A piecemeal training strategy disconnected from the overall strategic plan results in an under-educated enterprise that lacks the critical competencies and skills to deliver a unified plan,” Hirschey writes. When companies view education a top priority and investment, they turn human capital into an enduring source of competitive advantage.

About the Author

As a principal of Oliver Wight, Robert Hirschey has assisted companies in a broad range of industries in transforming their business planning and execution processes – consumer packaged goods, retail food and beverage, generic pharmaceuticals, downstream oil and gas, OEM transportation equipment, automotive lubricants, etc. His diverse executive background includes strategy development, execution, and measurement; business planning and analysis; capital investment analysis; mergers and acquisitions, and various corporate development activities.

About Oliver Wight Americas

Oliver Wight has a 40-year track record of delivering business improvement to some of the world’s best-known organizations. We believe that sustainable improvement can only be made through your own people. Unlike other consultancy firms, we transfer our knowledge to you, which means you can achieve performance levels and financial results that last. Our principals are seasoned professionals who have real-world manufacturing experience. They are thought leaders in the fields of supply chain management, integrated business planning, demand management, and product management. The largest worldwide consultancy of its type, Oliver Wight has offices throughout Europe, North and South America, and the Asia/Pacific Region.

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