Global Pharmaceutical Major | Virtual Learning Journey
Our customer, is a leading global specialty and branded multinational pharmaceutical company. Their portfolio compromises of over 100 products and 5000 trademarks. They supply to more than 150 countries around the world. They have supplied more than 500 million packs of medicine worldwide. They manage more than 3500 SKUs, from 60 manufacturing sites and 25 active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) manufacturers.
The learning engagement that they were exploring with us was for a group of 12 to 14 individuals from different parts of the organisation (and at different positions in the hierarchy), including two employees already in leadership roles. It was a group that had demonstrated fairly high levels of potential. However, it was felt that their performance could be enhanced, by a targeted intervention.
The objective of the learning intervention was hence to craft an impactful and interactive learning journey around the themes of:
1. Execution Skills (how to do it individually and collaboratively)
2. How to better collaborate with others (with a focus on how to communicate ideas across clearly and influence others)
3. Self-awareness (how they can stay self-motivated and perform to the best of their abilities)
It is always a pleasure for us to design an intervention when a client is very clear about their ask. This was one of those occasions. The intervention had to be designed keeping the seniority of the participants in mind.
After much internal discussions and brainstorming on what would be the best way to deliver the results in an impactful and engaging manner, we crafted a comprehensive learning journey spread over 4 months. The nuances of the individual programs were tweaked and fine-tuned in discussion with the client. What attracted the client to us from the word go was the use of the Experiential learning methodology.
This entire learning journey was conceived as below:
The Stage 1 of the intervention was done at the client location, with our Facilitator flying down there for the workshop execution. “How does one build their own personal brand?” – this was a topic that enthralled the participants. They were completely engaged in the workshop and were looking forward to the next few stages of the learning journey.
And then corona virus made its entry into the world! Face to face workshops were not an option anymore.
For us, the question was “How do we help our customers in this learning journey now?” We couldn’t leave them high and dry. That took us back to the drawing board to rethink the execution of the remaining part of this learning journey, in a virtual mode! What we were clear was that even if the delivery was through a virtual medium, the 4 steps of the Experiential methodology needed to be followed: Act – Engage – Share – Reflect. This turned out to be a very important decision, since participants brought in their own work experiences from across different functions during each VEbinar. That enabled real-time application, reflection and hence learning.
Also in line with our core philosophy of Digital-U workshops, the workshops had to have the human touch, follow a holistic approach and have actionable insights for the participants. Hence along with designing the workshop flow, we also designed customized workbooks for the participants for different stages of the journey, so that all learning could be captured and revisited. Learning in this way, makes it meaningful.
What we finally put together was a mixture of different virtual engagement methodologies that made the whole learning experience a very impactful and memorable one for our clients.
These is how the journey now morphed to:
• Stage 1: Face to face workshop – Build your personal brand – Drive yourself!
• Stage 2: Digital-U intervention using 2 VEbinars – Influence without authority – Drive others
Leadership is Influence. But how can leaders influence others when they have no formal authority over them?
• Stage 3: Online simulation using Evivve – Drive Work!
An immersive and high tech multiplayer simulation that teaches participants the importance of collaboration in order to achieve anything meaningful
• Stage 4: Digital-U intervention using 1 VEbinar – Road to Accountability
Quitting the blame game and owning up the responsibility – how can individuals and teams achieve that?
• Stage 5: Group Catch-up
Learning is not just about knowing new things. It is about assimilating it, pondering over it, questioning it, challenging it and finally coming to a new understanding of the topic and seeing it with new eyes. Group catch-up helps learners see topics through multiple perspectives, accelerates motivation and enriches learners.
Less by design and more by force, due to the pandemic – this is one learning engagement like no other that we had ever run so far. It was one of our first learning journey intervention with a mix of physical and virtual learning methodologies. The final impact that we created was something that we are so proud of ourselves. If we had been asked a month before we went into a lock-down, whether we would suggest a unique mix like this, we would have perhaps said “No!”
The client feedback for this whole engagement has been very effusive. We are thankful we could make an impact despite all the sudden challenges. Here are a few sample testimonials that we received:
From the stakeholders:
Thanks a lot. From my perspective, I found that you handled the face-to-face and virtual sessions with equal ease and dedication, and for that, thank you so much! It gives me great pleasure to see the team so energized.
Associate Manager – Talent Development, Human Resources
It has been a week of ensuring that the glass balls do not fall to the ground. I am really pleased to read the feedback – I would have loved to be part of the experience as well. Thanks a lot for the great work put in, and for ensuring high engagement levels of the team.
Associate Manager – Talent Development, Human Resources
Feedback for the Online Simulation (from different participants):
• Very dynamic and interesting :D, Great Collaboration with the team!
• Amazing experience – I was excited from the moment I read the briefing. Great platform and very interactive. It took us from our current roles and “forced” us to be in the others shoes. I wish i could play it outside of the training!
• Interesting and interactive session, really loved it and sad that we are not playing again on Friday!
• The simulation game was really interesting. It helped a lot in bringing the team together and putting all the “theory” in practice. Shoutout to the organisers – Please bring in more games 🙂
• Thank you so much FocusU for such an enjoyable session. First time, but big success
• Really great way to spark interest right from the briefing part. The motivation and collaboration really came through with the whole team. Thank you to the coordinators for ‘over’ delivering on the training- awesome job!! Thank you so much to each and everyone of you. @Organizers we need more games 😉
Feedback for the Digital-U VEbinars (from different participants):
• Well, I will start by thanking you for the great training delivered. I really enjoyed all the sessions, which I found very interesting, interactive and highly informative.
• It’s the first time that I attended a training where there are so many interactions and games. I believe this is what makes your training so successful. From Day 1, you managed to keep me engaged so that I would look forward to the next session. The games were refreshing, while they also helped in getting me to think, instead of the usual listen and absorb. Keep it up!
• I only wish we could have the last trainings face to face, but I understand this is not possible with the COVID situation. I would not hesitate to recommend your team to my relatives and friends
• As mentioned during last session, this training has been very successful. I enjoyed the ongoing self-introspection, and constant reminder that you are indeed Focusing on U (us).
• I would say if for another program with your Team, this time perhaps spending more time to go through the phases in greater depth (and more live sessions).
This has been an incredible journey and I am genuinely very sad that the sessions are almost over. By far, this has been the best training module I have been through. Kudos to the whole team behind the preparation as we know you’ve been cooking up a lot behind the scenes to make the trainings so complete. Indeed, COMPLETE is the word as it has included fun, learning, vulnerability, building strengths, sharing, experience, discussions, memories and so much more.
It is clear for me, this training has set the bar very high in terms of my future training expectations be it in terms of the content, ways of delivering and most of all the continuous grasp of attention you’ve managed to have over all the participants throughout the training. I will definitely miss the Evivve game. Wish we could have one more session. Awesome job FocusU team.
Order Management Planner, Supply Chain
Sharing some feedback for the overall learning journey here:
• Honestly, this program is one of the best training I have attended so far.
• Very interactive and everyone is engaged for a common goal during the different sessions
• Very good collaboration within the group
• This program helped me to think and tackle issues in a different perspective which is better compared to how I handled such issues in the past.
• Very good learning curve and it has helped me in my daily routines and activities both professional and personal. Definitely, on a long term approach, it will be more beneficial.
• Less theory (which reduces boredom), more practical stuffs, more interactions => This is how we should be involved in trainings going forward as we are more focused and our takeaway is much more compared to normal trainings we had in the past.
I would like to thank you for your time and energy invested on such programs. For me, it is definitely a success ☺. Special mention to the FocusU team. Guys, you were amazing, committed and passionate about what you do. Keep the same vibes ☺
Junior Quality Associate, Pharmaceutical Affairs
Thanks for sharing the video!! Amazing memories and to be honest I felt quite nostalgic when watching it during our last session (had to hide some tears). I want to take the time to share my most honest THANKS for the full journey! The training was amazing, with both physical and virtual structures. The support, communication and guidance of the full team was just awesome. And it was quite deep from a personal level – this should be mandatory for all individuals to get to know themselves better!
I would definitely recommend FocusU (10/10!) and hope we keep working with the team!
Senior Quality Associate