You are currently working for LRH Manufacturing as a manager overseeing the Information Technology department. LRH is a cross-functional corporation that develops medical devices used at hospitals and universities. The company has a history of developing innovative and creative products for their clients. All of the medical devices that are produced must first meet rigorous government regulations and guidelines. One of the regulations focuses on these points:
Professional development/standard employee training
System (process) in updating and monitoring of internal training records
Mandated employee training policy
Attendance records verifying employee training participation and completion
The majority of the executive management team has decided that the current training management system needs to be revamped and updated. The current training management system is done manually and stored in a binder; therefore, it is difficult to determine the accuracy of the information.
In a recent meeting the executive management team has announced a company-wide initiative?the implementation of a new web-based training management system. The new system will require all personnel to use the system to sign-up for training, document training competition and to monitor their involvement in their assigned projects. This would ensure that the government regulations are being followed and met.
To oversee this responsibility, the executive management team has created a new position, Web-Based Training Project Manager. The responsibilities of this position will be to select and oversee the training and implementation of the new training management system, as well as monitor company-wide training attendance and identify people who are "out of compliance."
You and the executive management team anticipate that there will be some resistance from various departments. Departments such as Manufacturing, will be required to use tools they have never used or refused to use before. Because instructional designers in the Training Department develop instructor-led training, they often have shunned implementation of any web-based system. Additionally, department managers' responsibilities will increase. They will be required to learn to use the system to assign courses to their direct reports and monitor the timely completion of the courses.
You are happy in your role as the manager of the Information Technology department, but you are very interested in pursuing the Web-Based Training Project Manager position for your professional growth.
Details: Executive management at LRH Manufacturing is known to be very strong and opinionated. However, departmental (middle) management has the opposite reputation. In fact, there have been several initiatives that have failed due to the lack of support and oversight that was given by department managers. Department managers provided minimal support in corresponding changes in procedure/behavior. The organizational structure is very hierarchical.
Traditionally, project managers have received limited access to speak directly with other department heads. As manager of the Information Technology department, you are very interested in becoming the project manager that will take on implementation of the new web-based training management system. In addition to an interview, your manager has sent you an email with a list of problems that are relevant to the position. Your email reply to the following problems will help your manager assess you for the position:
What are some leadership responsibilities of the project manager?
What types of experience, characteristics, and skills are needed by the project manager?
What are some reasons why you are suited for this role? As you describe your suitability for this role, be sure to identify your strengths, weaknesses, and strategies for overcoming your weaknesses.
How will you address the organizational culture and political environment to succeed on this project?
How will you use the strategy of walking the organization chart or will you try to work directly with department heads, and if so, describe.