European Training Wreck Essay Examples & Outline

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European Training Wreck


Situation

Two companies with different backgrounds in marketing had merged to form an improved company with global presence. The merger took place between US-based and European-based companies. Naturally, merging leads to some organizational changes that have to be implanted consistent with the new organization’s goals. modifications have to be made in order for the new company to function well otherwise the company will be operating as if there are two autonomous companies. To enhance teamwork, the merged companies undertook training sessions whereby they sought to inculcate a common corporate culture among the sales representatives. The initial phase of the training was conducted in the United States.

It was a success mainly because the mode of operation of the united sales representatives was interactive and most of the sales people were accustomed to each other. The European phase was a failure since the European based company was not keen on teamwork. The sales representatives often worked alone with their immediate managers as the only management members that they were accustomed to. Receiving training from a high-ranking manager in the new company was not appealing to the European salespeople. They could not accord the manager the expected level of seriousness hence the failure in the training session.

Problem

There are different issues that come out in the case. The first problem stems from the decision by the management to bring a US based sales executive to conduct training on the salespeople from different countries in Europe. There was a mirage that the success of the executive in the United States would be transferred to the European scenario. The sales representatives could not develop the respect needed for the executive since they did not recognize the authority that he bore (Mikula, 2004).

Arguably, they accorded more respect to their local managers than to the executive. Lack of respect led to some unethical behavior whereby some of them started analyzing the executive (Kotler, 2000). The leeway to behave in this manner could have come from lack of information on what was expected of them. The need assessment was also not conducted in the right manner. Due to this oversight, the management of the merged company failed in meeting the needs of the salespeople (Mikula, 2004). There was also a perception that the American executive was not respectful since they thought that he was treating them as children.

Solution

The solution to the problems identified above would be arrived at in the event that the management changed the executives conducting the training. Local executives would be better since they would understand the main reasons behind the behavior of the salespeople. Local executives would understand the underlying issues that the salespeople face and attend to them. The cultural issues that affect the sales people would be better understood by the local executives (Kotler, 2000). The second solution would be to conduct country-based training. Attempting to train all the salespeople in Europe at one meeting was ill informed. Therefore, the company would have to conduct the training in the respective nations as opposed to one training session irrespective of the imperative costs (Mikula, 2004).

Recommendations

Use local sales executives in the training since they understand the people better. However, the use of local representatives could be detrimental to the company since they will continue with the trends that they are accustomed to. This outcome is undesired for the company since it is implanting a joint strategy.

Conduct specialized training according to the country. Specialized training is effective in the creation of the right approach to the unique aspects of each area of the country. Coming up with a country focused training is expensive and time consuming. The joint purpose of the organization might be lost in the creation of a joint approach.

Ensure that the sales representatives understand the cultural issues that are important for the people and adhere to them accordingly. This recommendation may not work in that the sales representatives are rigid to change due to the long time that they have been working for the old company. Changing their approaches and perspectives to accommodate the cultural diversity could be difficult since they have their preformed perceptions on the best ways of doing business.

References
Kotler, P. (2000). Marketing management (1st ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall.
Mikula, J. (2004). Sales training (1st ed.). Alexandria, Va.: ASTD.