Human Resource Management of Cisco Systems, Inc. -
January 24th, 2011
Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO, SEHK: 4333) is an American-based multinational corporation that designs and sells consumer electronics, networking and communications technology and services. Headquartered in San Jose, California, Cisco has more than 65,000 employees and annual revenue of US$40.0 billion as of 2010. The stock was added to the Dow Jones Industrial Average on June 8, 2009, and is also included in the S&P 500 Index the Russell 1000 Index, NASDAQ100 Index and the Russell 1000 Growth Stock Index. Cisco is one of the world's biggest technology corporations
Training is essential for job success. It can lead to higher production, fewer mistakes, greater job satisfaction and lower turnover. These benefits accrue to both the trainee and the organization, if managers understand the principles behind the training process. To this end, training efforts must invariably follow certain learning-oriented guidelines.
Modeling is simply copying someone else's behavior. Passive classroom learning does not leave any room for modeling. If we want to change people, it would be a good idea to have videotapes of people showing the desired behavior. The selected model should provide the right kind of behavior to be copied by others. A great deal of human behaviour is learned by modelling others. Children learn by modelling parents and older children, they are quite comfortable with the process by the time they grow up. As experts put it. "managers tend to manage as they were managed"
For learning to take place, intention to learn is important. When the employee is motivated, he pays attention to what is being said, done and presented. Motivation to learn is influenced by the answers to questions such as: How important is my job to me? How important is the information? Will learning help me progress in the company? etc. People learn more quickly when the material is important and relevant to them. Learning is usually quicker and long-lasting when the learner participates actively. Most people, for example, never forget how to ride a bicycle because they took an active part in the learning process.
If a behavior is rewarded, it probably will be repeated. Positive reinforcement consists of rewarding desired behaviors. People avoid certain behaviors that invite criticism and punishment. A bank officer would want to do a postgraduate course in finance, if it earns him increments and makes him eligible for further promotions. Both the external rewards (investments, praise) and the internal rewards (a feeling of pride and achievement) associated with desired behaviors compel subjects to learn properly. To be effective, the trainer must reward desired behaviors only. If he rewards poor performance, the results may be disastrous: good performers may quit in frustration, accidents may go up, and productivity may suffer. The reinforcement principle is also based on the premise that punishment is less effective in learning than reward. Punishment is a pointer to undesirable behaviors. When administered, it causes pain to the employee. He mayor may not repeat the mistakes. The reactions may be mild or wild. Action taken to repeal a person from undesirable action is punishment. If administered properly, punishment may force the trainee to modify the undesired or incorrect behaviors.
People learn best if reinforcement is given as soon as possible after training. Every employee wants to know what is expected of him and how well he is doing. If he is off the track, somebody must put him back on the rails. The errors in such cases must be rectified immediately. The trainee after learning the right behaviour is motivated to do things in a 'right' way and earn the associated rewards. Positive feedback (showing the trainee the right way of doing things) is to be preferred to negative feedback (telling the trainee that he is not correct) when we want to change behaviour.
Learning takes place easily if the practice sessions are spread over a period of time. New employees learn better if the orientation programme is spread over a two or three day period, instead of covering it all in one day. For memorizing tasks, 'massed' practice is usually more effective. Imagine the way schools ask the kids to say the Lord's prayer aloud. Can you memorise a long poem by learning only one line per day? You tend to forget the beginning of the poem by the time you reach the last stanza. For 'acquiring' skills as stated by Mathis and Jackson, spaced practice is usually the best. This incremental approach to skill acquisition minimises the physical fatigue that deters learning.
The concept of whole learning suggests that employees learn better if the job information is explained as an entire logical process, so that they can see how the various actions fit together into the 'big picture'. A broad overview of what the trainee would be doing on the job should be given top priority, if learning has to take place quickly. Research studies have also indicated that it is more efficient to practice a whole task all at once rather than trying to master the various components of the task at different intervals.
'Practice makes a man perfect': so said Bacon. To be a swimmer, you should plunge into water instead of simply reading about swimming or looking at films of the worlds' best swimmers. Learning is enhanced when trainees are provided ample opportunities to repeat the task. For maximum benefit, practice sessions should be distributed over time.
Applicability of Training
Training should be as real as possible so that trainees can successfully transfer the new knowledge to their jobs. The training situations should be set up so that trainees can visualise - and identify with - the types of situations they can come across on the job.
Finally, environment plays a major role in training. It is natural that workers who are exposed to training in comfortable environments with adequate, well spaced rest periods are more likely to learn than employees whose training conditions are less than ideal. Generally speaking, learning is very fast at the beginning. Thereafter, the pace of learning slows down as opportunities for improvement taper off.
Last edited by netrashetty; January 24th, 2011 at 06:01 PM..