Your answers to commonly asked questions about management training programmes.
The premise of most MTPs is on-the-job training. A management trainee will be rotated between several departments within the company, staying for a month or two in each department. If you are in an organisation with an international presence, you might even be given a chance to work in various divisions around the world.
You will be immersed in the day-to-day running of each department, and given real responsibilities to handle. The purpose of this expansive exposure is to develop and groom dynamic leaders for the future. Often, a good way of doing this is to let you hit the ground running.
There is usually an element of coaching and mentoring in the MTP, with trainees being assigned to someone senior in the company. The coach, or mentor, will serve as a guide for them during their early months in the organisation, showing them good practices and work ethics. Guidance will be given on specific projects or any problems that crop up, enabling them to tackle obstacles in real time.
Trainees are expected to develop a broad understanding of the business as a whole. This business awareness is the first step towards industry awareness, both of which are crucial traits a future high-level executive needs to have.
In addition to learning how things work, trainees will also be expected to question the status quo. They have to learn to be innovative and think outside the box, and to brainstorm ways to bring about positive changes. In a progressive organisation, there may even be opportunities for candidates to challenge existing practices.
Yes, the MTP is a marriage between the practical experience gained out on the field, and the business and management theories behind that experience.
The formal training sessions serve as an effective bridge between the academic environment at university or college to a performance-based workplace.
Not really. The training is more extensive, expansive, and industry-relevant. Typically, trainees will be exposed to leadership, technical, and soft-skills training.
Companies are always on the lookout for future leaders. So it is only logical that leadership training is ingrained into MTPs. Trainees will be expected to take on key roles within a project, and possibly even lead a project. The objective is to test their mettle, so to speak.
Technical training gives the candidates a holistic view of the whole organisation, whether or not they choose to specialise in this area at the end of the programme. For example, if they join a manufacturing company, they will be allocated time to learn about the technical aspects of the business. If they join a developer, they will be posted on-site to get a real feel of the crux of the business.
Usually, technical training comes in the form of projects. For example, if they’re on rotation to the PR and marketing department of a beauty company, they will be given a product launch or an event to handle. This will give them hands-on experience and technical knowledge on how the industry works – from writing press releases to getting their hands dirty to set up a booth at an exhibition.
Soft-skills training covers a wide area of topics including people management, communications, negotiation, EQ, and the like. Future leaders are expected to not only navigate the business world with finesse but also to be able to deal with the world around him with personal savvy. Leaders must know how to motivate their teams and in their turn, groom other worthy candidates.
Trainees will be subjected to periodic performance appraisals with a final one upon completion. These appraisals will serve as checkpoints for trainees to get an idea of their progress and to determine if any additional training is needed in specific areas. Constructive feedback is exchanged, enabling a smoother transition into the organisation at the end of the training period.
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