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The highest motivations for training

Category: Bank Management

The second thing that is a must, is to insure the highest motivations for training.

It can, moreover, be a precondition in order to increase turnover and/or to be able to charge higher course fees. In fact, since the introduction of course fees for bank training in C.I.S. countries, there have often been less managers and staff participating in the courses.

In the C.I.S., as of today, it has proved to be difficult to generate sufficient interest and commitment for training. Not all banks realise the importance of such an approach and take part in the process of training and building up the required qualified staff for the transition period. How can one increase the interest of local banks in training (and consulting) products?

Let us first try to understand the specificities of the motivation for training process in the C.I.S. banks. We have, for instance, observed that « despite the level (or amount) of the needs, if the training of eastern managers has often proved not to be very efficient, it was mainly because things went as if the managers’ willingness and capacity/ability to absorb and apply western management skills was restrained by several motivational factors. We still need therefore to find out how to implement western management knowledge in the C.I.S. organisations.

That requires us to be able to overcome those underlying factors which prevent success. We could, for instance, take into consideration the following negative aspects of eastern managers’ motivations for training:

For some of them, if not for most of them, the participation on a course means above all an all-expenses-paid trip, a distraction is their major purpose. Therefore they do not attend to the courses very carefully, they do not pay much attention to what they are taught, and they hardly try to apply anything in their professional lifes.

Most eastern managers feel there is some kind of urgency for them to catch solutions and tools that could be immediately used in the conditions they are facing, in their own professional environment. They have no interest in theoretical aspects, and would, therefore, reject any lecture where the practical side was not immediately obvious. Whatever does not appear to be directly applicable is felt as irrelevant, thus boring, leading to people reading newspapers during the courses («just as we used to do in Party meetings»). Even the most open minded eastern managers admit huge difficulties in relating theory to practice and thinking about how to apply management concepts into their environment.

Even if they would not agree with it, we several times felt that many eastern managers have ambiguous attitudes induced by the «fear of the Great Unknown»: wariness about acclimatizing to the new economic realities, fear of new ideas and practices, deep anxiety about change, etc.»

The obvious conclusion of these observations is that motivation for training depends mainly on the involvement of the bank’s management.

Sometimes, bank executives and top managers (who, in most banks, were initially central bankers) lack awareness of the necessity of permanent training, clearly do not consider training of great use for their banks, and are still reluctant to send their clerical staff to courses. We know, in some banks, cases of absolute unwillingness and conservative approach, towards training of staff members, on the part of top management. It will thus remain crucial to raise awareness about the necessity to manage change and the commitment for training among the top management of banks. For that purpose, it is possible to organise a workshop for banks’ top management and executives on the management of change.

Commitment of beneficiaries’ immediate management is also sometimes lacking. Contacts to the middle management of banks should be improved in order to increase training demand.

The active involvement of Human Resources Managers is also very useful. Through implementation of workshops with personnel managers, in order to develop their consciousness about their functions in the banks, it is possible to develop convincing arguments in favour of more training and to strengthening the personnel departments’ position vis-а-vis their respective top managements.

Finally, the motivation for training can be enhanced by working in collaboration with Banks Associations and Central Banks concerning the development of vocational standards for banking staff. The existence of such standards quite naturally leads to more demand for bank training.

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