Document Type Doctoral Thesis Author Botha, Deonie Francesca URN etd-07282008-165801 Document Title The strategic continuing training needs of executives and managers on a selection of large South African companies Degree DPhil Department Information Science Supervisor
Advisor Name Title Prof J A Boon Supervisor Keywords
- strategic training
- traditional training
- strategic environment
- Cynefin framework
- organisational sense making
- strategic human resource development
- South African companies
- strategic training needs
- training infrastructure
- knowledge management
- knowledge processes
Date 2008-04-23 Availability unrestricted Abstract
The strategic environment of companies is divided in four domains. These domains are the known, knowable, complex and chaos domains. The known and knowable domains are characterised by order while the chaos and complex domains are characterised by unorder. The factors present in the chaos and complex domains are emergent in nature and are regarded as un-ordered. Executives and managers need to be prepared to manage in all four these domains in order to ensure the long-term competitiveness of companies. This implies that the training needs of executives and managers need to be identified and addressed in order to prepare them to manage in the four domains in the strategic environment of companies.
Executives and managers are trained by means of traditional and/or strategic training. Traditional training prepares executives and managers to manage in the ordered domains while strategic training prepare executives and managers to manage in the domains characterised by un-order which are emergent in nature. Strategic training is “based on predictions of future job requirements” (Rothwell & Kazanas, 1994:425). Traditional training addresses the training needs of executives and managers as it flows from the current strategic orientation of the company while strategic training addresses the training needs of executives and managers as it flows from the emergent strategic orientation of the company.
Knowledge management entails the establishment of an environment within which knowledge processes (creation, codification, sharing, organisation and use of knowledge) are performed through a variety of tools and techniques to the benefit of the company. Knowledge processes regarding the emergent strategic orientation of companies are performed during a strategic training process and therefore strategic training is regarded as a knowledge management technique. Strategic training enables executives and managers to learn as regards the emergent strategic orientation of the company. Ahmed, Kok and Loh (2002:23) state: “The objective of organizational learning and knowledge management is to create a motivated and energized work environment that supports the continuous creation, collection, use and reuse of both personal and organization knowledge in the pursuit of business success.” Furthermore, Ahmed, Kok and Loh (2002:23) explain that the ability of companies to capitalise on their knowledge assets defines their competitiveness. Knowledge management techniques such as strategic training should be used to ensure that the knowledge assets of companies contribute to the long-term competitiveness of companies.
The literature on strategic training was studied and empirical research was conducted in a selection of 24 large South African companies in order to ascertain the nature and scope of training offered to executives and managers. The nature and scope of training in large South African companies were studied to ascertain whether these companies use a strategic training process to identify and address the strategic training needs of executives and managers and thus if companies perform knowledge processes regarding their emergent strategic orientation. It was ascertained that only a few of the 24 large South African companies which participated in the study use a strategic training process to identify and address the strategic training needs of executives and managers. A framework for the implementation of a cyclical strategic training process is therefore proposed as a guideline for companies that want to use a strategic training process.
© University of Pretoria 2007D455 gm
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