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Learning a few things from India’s model

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in Leaders & Managers,Management Training

Conventional wisdom dictates that businesses will need to innovate like mad to stay competitive in a global economy. And who better to drive innovation than a talented workforce?

India’s business leaders have aimed a laser-like focus on workforce development, rapidly making the country a global R&D hub in several industries, despite the fact that it has a much smaller pool of highly educated graduates than the United States.

A few of India’s best practices:

De-emphasize résumés. Hire for aptitude. Indian companies assume they’ll bridge the skills gaps with training, so they often recruit from second- and third-tier colleges.

Train from scratch. Indian companies invest substantial time (up to four months) and money in training new employees. Even senior executives participate. Example: Technical leaders spend one to two weeks a year delivering classroom training at the Indian division of Cadence Design Systems.

Pinpoint employees’ weak areas annually and train them more. Example: Satyam Computer Services’ training requirement is 150 hours per year. 

Deepen your management pool. Most companies offer extensive management training, while others, such as Adobe and Genpact, have set policies to cultivate managers internally.

— Adapted from “What the U.S. Can Learn from Indian R&D,” Vivek Wadhwa, BusinessWeek.

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