Lafarge Company China had a challenge in training and development of its workforce. The extreme need for training was as a result of initial recruitment influenced by nepotism, non-educated land owner peasants and a selection which was not based on merit. Since the start of the JV, there was only one training in 1989 that 200 people were sent t o train for cement production, vehicle maintenance, laboratory testing, 26 key workers and special equipment training. Thereafter, no more training or lacked incentive for an on-gong training occurred that posed a danger of low quantity and quality productivity of cement and numerous accidents (Lafarge internal company document).
The firm started retraining and redeployment of the workforce to different departments supported by international labour force through different acquisitions across the globe. The target workers were both technical expertise and management perspective with the ability to work in cross-cultural teams; an open mind-set to think in international terms; ability to listen and to lead; adaptability to new environments and Chinese language skills. In addition to the general training plans, the company had different training policies for top management under the corporate HR, middle management, and lower management. Since 1999, the firm introduced using learning organization methodology which encompassed learning from within the group, learning on the job, and coaching in the field. During the training session, is designed to be trainees centered and resource based (eds. Warner & Joynt, 2002), while the training managers play a role of facilitators of learning and development and help employees to learn and cooperate on the job. This enabled employees to collectively contribute to Lafarge massive wealth of resources by putting forward the workforce’s best practices and competencies.
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