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Leadership development in China

China launched a new manager fundamentals program in 2015 to support managerial skill development, deepen understanding of key business drivers, and increase communication and cooperation between managers across China. The program has two core components – one focused on managerial skill development and the other on leadership topics, with two new themes each month. 

Topic Town enhances managerial skills

The learning content in Topic Town is focused on the key tools and processes in place for managers at Valmet in China. Topics vary and range from HR-driven topics like manager role, rewarding practices, and individual and team development to legal, lean and quality topics as well.  

Topic Town Schedule“Since the program was kicked off in 2015, we’ve run more than 11 Topic Town modules. The program has done an excellent job of creating a strong foundation for line managers in China. In addition to the China-specific learning content, we’ve also connected the learning to our global manager development work, like ManagerAcademy, Forward for Managers and the renewed 360,” says Sherry Song, head of HR in China.

Talking business in Boss Town

Boss Town is the second component of the program, which focuses on business and strategic topics. The sessions are led by business leaders in China. Boss Town not only deepens China’s line manager’s business understanding, but also gives China’s leadership a platform to engage and expand their influence.

“China’s management team has embraced Boss Town and views it as an opportunity to engage with managers across China. Even people who were skeptical at first have actively come forward and asked for a slot. Perhaps the biggest benefit of the program is the opportunity to expand networks and the additional communication that comes with it,” Sherry continues.

Encouraging interaction

Managers are encouraged to ask questions and stay connected throughout the program. The program also uses modern technology to attract and maintain interest. The on-line format is balanced with dynamic networking tools like WeChat and online quizzes, as well as the latest technology to promote training content.

Topic Town Chat on mobile phone  

“Overall, I am pleased with how the program has developed. I see a difference in the level of communication among managers of all levels. It is extremely rewarding when managers approach me during lunch to share the new ideas they’ve gotten as a result of the program. That is when you know we’re on the right track,” Sherry concludes.