When I finished, many moons ago, what was then called matriculation, I went on to train as a primary school teacher. We were trained back then using an apprenticeship model. We had lectures and tutorials for half the day and we spent the other half day in a school. In our second and final year we had a long term placement in a school for some weeks at a time. It was very practical and experientially based and many professionals were trained that way at that time.
Many lamented the loss of that when professional training was moved into a strongly academic model in universities with much more limited access to practical work.
There is, however, a strong belief by many that learning on the job is the best way to learn and there are indications that some organisations are making commitments to do just that.
The Adecco Group Names Australian Apprentice CEO For One Month.
It was therefore interesting during the last week to read about a world-wide initiative, now in its fourth year, from leading global recruitment group, Adecco. It selects a young person between the ages of 18 to 26 years of age to be Australian CEO for One month and work alongside The Adecca Group Australia CEO, Ger Doyle, as an apprentice CEO.
2,100 people applied in Australia and a 22 year old Macquarie University undergraduate, Roy Hanna, was the successful applicant. Studying commerce and law this has to be a once in a lifetime opportunity to learn on the job about the complexities of leading a large global company.
Adecco has said “that CEO for One Month was launched to equip candidates with the skills and knowledge not offered in the traditional model of education”, that “the program’s goal is to complement students’ studies and give them the edge that few will possess before they leave university”.
So Why Is This Relevant To You As Leaders and Managers? Read On!
- Leaders and aspiring leaders, I recommend that you read more about this exciting initiative here.
- Leaders, then ask yourself how you might be able to offer apprenticeship-style training in your organisation.
- As part of your talent development and management system (don’t have one? maybe you could get one!) can you set up an arrangement that your selected employees work alongside your leaders, managers and co-ordinators to gain skills in leadership, management, co-ordination and supervision?
- Alternatively can they shadow you for a day?
- Or can you empower them by inviting them to take on a specific leadership task and coach them through the process, for example, leading a task force group or producing a report or representing you at a meeting?
What About Its Relevance To You as An Aspiring Leader?
- Be courageous and go to your manager and ask for these kinds of roles and opportunities.
With much flatter organisational structures today there are far fewer rungs to climb on the leadership ladder. In fact, there are many broken rungs and that old way of progressing your career by climbing the ladder is no longer the best way to go.
- You have to take charge of your own career and plan it out, seizing opportunities, even creating them for yourself. Horizontal leadership, where you go sideways to gain experience that then takes you up, is a very worthwhile option.