There's nothing accidental about the communication employees of Rockland, MA-based EMD Serono, Inc., receive. It's a studied process in which Michael Laffin, director, learning and organizational development, and his team know exactly what's being transmitted. "We have a strong partnership with our U.S. communications group to monitor how and when we're communicating to employees," says Laffin. "There's a strategy to how we communicate to them." The learning and organizational development department also works with its sales training team, Sales Excellence, to make sure reps are included in the communication loop.
The company uses a blended approach to training to provide flexibility in learning vehicles. A prime example of that, says Laffin, is the company's Desktop Coach Workshops, 26 90-minute tutorials focused on various desktop computer applications used at EMD Serono. One-on-one instruction through the Desktop Coach program also is available, either in the form of a live meeting for office-based employees, or a virtual classroom for those in the field.
Since reps are equipped with laptops, Webcasts are an efficient way to keep them abreast of company happenings. "In terms of linking them into an employee or business update meeting," says Laffin, "we will not only broadcast it via the Web, but also archive it, and put it up on our intranet so they can access it at a later time."