Pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment mat­ters to busi­ness suc­cess

Mein­ders School of Busi­ness of­fers the goods

The Oklahoman (Sunday) - - BUSINESS - BY MICHAELA MARX WHEATLEY BrandIn­sight Ed­i­tor This ar­ti­cle is spon­sored by OCU Mein­der’s School of Busi­ness.

Amer­i­cans spent more than $70 bil­lion on pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment and cor­po­rate train­ing in 2016 — a 25 per­cent in­crease since the end of the last eco­nomic re­ces­sion, ac­cord­ing to Forbes.

Em­ploy­ers are rec­og­niz­ing em­ployee de­vel­op­ment as an in­no­va­tive way to at­tract and re­tain qual­ity tal­ent and over­come skill gaps. They have also no­ticed the im­pact this in­vest­ment can have on a busi­ness’ bot­tom line.

“Ok­la­homa com­pa­nies are no ex­cep­tion,” said Melissa Cory, di­rec­tor of Ex­ec­u­tive and Pro­fes­sional Ed­u­ca­tion at Ok­la­homa City Univer­sity’s Mein­ders School of Busi­ness. “In­vest­ment in pro­fes­sional ed­u­ca­tion is in­valu­able.”

“At Mein­ders we rec­og­nized sev­eral years ago the im­por­tance of con­tin­u­ous learn­ing and de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties for our grad­u­ates, in­dus­try pro­fes­sion­als and our com­mu­nity,” she said. “That’s how Ok­la­homa can pro­duce busi­ness lead­ers and the en­ter­pris­ing work­force that we need to com­pete.”

“The best com­pa­nies un­der­stand that growth and de­vel­op­ment of their tal­ent is one of the great­est driv­ers of en­gage­ment and re­ten­tion,” Cory said. “There­fore, they pri­or­i­tize and al­lo­cate the nec­es­sary re­sources to pro­vide en­rich­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties for con­tin­u­ous learn­ing — all while gain­ing a com­pet­i­tive edge to main­tain top tal­ent and be an em­ployer of choice.”

Ac­cord­ing to a re­cent sur­vey, 76 per­cent of em­ploy­ees want op­por­tu­ni­ties for ca­reer growth as one of the top three non­fi­nan­cial mo­ti­va­tors. Mil­len­ni­als rank th­ese op­por­tu­ni­ties even higher; 87 per­cent of mil­len­ni­als said pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties were very im­por­tant fac­tors in their de­ci­sions to stay at a job, ac­cord­ing to Gallup.

The Ex­ec­u­tive and Pro­fes­sional Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­ter in the Mein­ders School of Busi­ness at Ok­la­homa City Univer­sity pro­vides de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties through high­qual­ity pro­grams, con­fer­ences and spe­cial events. They have been rec­og­nized be­yond the re­gion for prepar­ing pro­fes­sion­als to earn cer­ti­fi­ca­tion in project man­age­ment pro­fes­sional (PMP); So­ci­ety for Hu­man Re­source Man­age­ment Cer­ti­fied Pro­fes­sional (SHRM-CP) and So­ci­ety for Hu­man Re­source Man­age­ment Se­nior Cer­ti­fied Pro­fes­sional (SHRM-SCP); ex­ec­u­tive coach­ing and lead­er­ship de­vel­op­ment, Na­tive Amer­i­can En­ter­prise Man­age­ment, Pro­fes­sional Land Man­age­ment (PLM) pro­grams and cus­tom­ized train­ing so­lu­tions.

“We are pas­sion­ate about ed­u­ca­tion and pro­vid­ing busi­ness and lead­er­ship so­lu­tions for to­day’s tal­ented and di­verse work­force,” Cory said.

“Our strat­egy is to pur­sue niches with an em­pha­sis on per­son­al­iza­tion where growth and part­ner­ships en­able us to de­liver qual­ity pro­grams and high value re­quired by the mod­ern-day busi­ness com­mu­nity.”

This divi­sion of the busi­ness school works with a di­verse clien­tele, from For­tune 500 com­pa­nies and gov­ern­ment agen­cies to small busi­nesses, non­prof­its and in­di­vid­u­als with a de­sire to sharpen their skills and reach their per­sonal and pro­fes­sional goals.

If skill de­vel­op­ment for high­po­ten­tials, man­agers and se­nior lead­er­ship is what you’re look­ing for, the ex­ec­u­tive coach­ing and lead­er­ship de­vel­op­ment pack­age in­cludes an in-depth as­sess­ment into one’s char­ac­ter, driv­ers and risks as well as the prepa­ra­tion of an in­di­vid­ual de­vel­op­men­tal ac­tion plan.

“With em­ployee en­gage­ment and job sat­is­fac­tion at his­toric lows, it’s im­por­tant to un­der­stand per­sonal lead­er­ship acu­men, vo­ca­tional suit­abil­ity and re­ward and recog­ni­tion pref­er­ences, to main­tain peak per­for­mance, Cory said.

“A stan­dard, one-size-fits-all ben­e­fits and re­wards pro­gram just doesn’t work.”

“Top em­ploy­ers with trans­for­ma­tional lead­ers re­al­ize the im­por­tance of de­ter­min­ing what mo­ti­vates the in­di­vid­ual em­ployee,” she said. “The CDR 3-D As­sess­ment Suite for ex­am­ple is a ro­bust tool used to pro­vide the unique in­sights into a leader’s key strengths and de­vel­op­ment needs in the ar­eas of char­ac­ter, driv­ers and re­wards and risk as­sess­ment.”

More­over, Cory said, be­ing able to add cer­ti­fi­ca­tions such as PMP, SHRM and PLM to a re­sume have be­come in­creas­ingly im­por­tant to pro­fes­sion­als — and Mein­ders is ready to pre­pare them for it.

The school is par­tic­u­larly proud of some of the part­ner­ships forged with the com­mu­nity. The Na­tive Amer­i­can En­ter­prise Man­age­ment pro­gram, for in­stance, was de­vel­oped in part­ner­ship with Gover­nor Anoatubby and the Chick­a­saw Na­tion. It is now in its third year.

“This has been a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity for all of us. We con­sider the strate­gic di­rec­tion with our client at the cen­ter of the con­ver­sa­tion, which strength­ens our part­ner­ship and drives fi­nan­cial re­sults,” she said.

Cory and her team have helped de­velop cus­tom­ized pro­grams for many lo­cal com­pa­nies to close skill gaps and drive cre­ativ­ity and in­no­va­tion in a for­mat that meets bud­getary needs and or­ga­ni­za­tional goals. They also of­fer ser­vices such as con­fer­ence and event plan­ning and help con­nect the com­mu­nity to ex­per­tise and other lead­er­ship.

From cus­tom train­ing, cer­tifi­cate pro­grams or con­fer­ences and events, the Ex­ec­u­tive and Pro­fes­sional Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­ter will help find a solution to any pro­fes­sional de­vel­op­ment need.

“Ed­u­ca­tion has the power to change lives,” Cory said. “We of­fer a great col­lec­tion of pro­grams with the high­est qual­ity con­tent avail­able to help our clients cre­ate in­no­va­tive ways to keep win­ning.”

Dis­cover what a pro­fes­sional ed­u­ca­tion from Mein­ders means at www.okcu.edu/busi­ness/pro­fes­sional-ed­u­ca­tion.

[PHOTO PRO­VIDED]

The Ex­ec­u­tive and Pro­fes­sional Ed­u­ca­tion Cen­ter in the Mein­ders School of Busi­ness at Ok­la­homa City Univer­sity pro­vides de­vel­op­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties through high-qual­ity pro­grams, con­fer­ences and spe­cial events.

LEFT: Melissa Cory, di­rec­tor of Ex­ec­u­tive and Pro­fes­sional Ed­u­ca­tion at Ok­la­homa City Univer­sity’s Mein­ders School of Busi­ness.

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