In our third and final part of the series, I examine the higher level learning that must occur at the executive level. It is hoped that as education becomes more prevalent, these processes can occur at the lower levels in the organization as well.
Moving toward the executive suite in an organization means moving from day-to-day thinking that handles task and objective level activities to strategic, long-term thinking. To complete this transition, development of critical thinking and synthesis of information that allow movement of the vision of an organization is a must.
A fire chief from the 1970’s would be in disbelief that fire departments would enter a building with the police on an active shooter event. This is a significant vision change from the 1970’s expectation of the fire service.
The difference between education and training is the level of thought process. In training, a skill is taught and the student repeats the skill. In education, knowledge is provided and the student develops thoughts that will allow the use of a concept in their organization.
Moving higher in degree levels, the student must gather more information sources and synthesis them into information used to benefit their profession. Finally, as the student enters the doctoral program, they take all of the past information and utilize it to develop and research new theory. This is key to any profession is the development of their own theories and empirical research. This development of theory and research is important for the movement of EDM into the future.
The discussion of a ”Flood, discussed as a result of the flooding in Baton Rouge on National Public Radio’s Here and Now, focuses on the benefits, but also the drawbacks related to human behavior to ignore low scale reports.
Research into the advantages/disadvantages allows for prior guidance.
Beyond educational degrees and scientific research, executives must continually compile data that allow case study review to ensure the organization can meet future demands. As noted by a former instructor of mine: If you sit still, you are actually moving backwards, as the world doesn’t stop and wait on you.
It is important that the executive remain engaged in profession-specific associations, local universities, and profession-related focus groups to gain the latest information that the executive can utile to build case studies based on their organization. It is important to take national-level input and insert local specifics to ensure any changes fit the community and organization and are not a force fit that can frustrate all of the stakeholders.
Executives must lead the way in training and educating their organization. This series aims to help spark thoughts towards this increased knowledge base that will help move EDM organizations into the future. What will you do next week to start your training plan?