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Spur everyone to become better leaders

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Jay Anders sought to change the way his company trained its 9,000 employees to grow into leaders. So he shifted its focus from traditional classroom seminars to self-directed resources.

Anders, head of leadership development at MillerCoors, knew that on­­line tools and Web-based mentoring programs would benefit the workforce more than old-fashioned classroom ­lectures. His team unveiled an online library of leadership books so that em­­ployees could view summaries of key learning points and map out ways to apply what they read. The training staff also designed MillerCoors University so that employees could access a range of leadership book abstracts on the in-house university’s website.

About 5,000 of the company’s 9,000 employees work in breweries so they don’t use computers in their job. But Anders and his team set up com­puters in common areas so employees could read about leadership on their breaks.

While MillerCoors didn’t abandon classroom training, it supplemented it with relevant readings. Before and after a workshop, participants were assigned readings on topics covered in the session. This increased the odds that attendees would incorporate the tools into their daily job.

When the company’s executives make instructive or inspirational presentations to brewery employees, they send book summaries in advance for their audience to read.

— Adapted from “Case study: MillerCoors,” www.getabstract.com.

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