The MMC training is divided into 3 modules, each of which is 2-day training and there is a period of 4-5 weeks between one module to another. The trainees are middle managers from 6 companies, namely Bui Gia, Grande, Amore, Wood Plus, Woodsland, Hafele Hanoi) and researchers from Institute of Policy and Strategy for Agricultural and Rural Development (IPSARD), Vietnam Forestry University (VFU) and Vietnamese Academy of Forest Sciences (VAFS).
In the first module (21-22 Feb 2014), the trainees are first introduced with different characteristics of a production company, which include personnel, personnel assignment, input-output of a section, receiving a production order, difficulties of a production company, and decisive issues of supplier-consumer relationship. Then they are introduced with structure, management system (organizational chart, HR management, job description) and areas (development, work preparation, production, technical services-maintenance) of a production company. In the end of the first module, the trainees are instructed how to make a proposal of improvement project and how to collect data. They have four weeks to draft their own proposals of improvement projects and start to collect data for their projects.
The training topics of the second module (12-22 Mar 2014) are quite advanced to the trainees. They are guided how to calculate different costs of a production enterprises (such as direct-indirect costs, cost of a specific machine, cost of a specific furniture, and so on) and provided with measures to improve production efficiency (such as proposals for productivity improvement, proposals for quality improvement…). The trainees also have chance to share their draft proposals of improvement projects, which are revised by the trainer so as to be feasible for a short period of time.
In the last module (25-26 Apr 2014), first the trainees are introduced with A-B-C analysis which helps them define which type of products they make small investment, but bring big turnover. Then they are trained with basic management tools, namely authority, work planning, effective communication, rules in giving orders, advices for an effective meeting, guidance in probation time, steps to have proper decision, and effective group working. After that, they do self-assessment on their knowledge and application of those tools. Then they select one tool which they are not good at to make improvement plan (activities/steps they will apply it in their work). After implementation (4-8 weeks), they will make a short report on their results to be submitted to their management board.
At the end of the third module, the trainees/ trainee groups, who implement their improvement projects, have chance to present their results of implementation. Their CEOs are also invited to the presentation and give comments to those projects.
For a short time of implementation (5 weeks), the trainees only select a process or a machine for their improvement projects. Their results of implementation from those improvement projects will be lessons learnt for them to implement other improvement projects for other processes or machines in future.
CEOs expect improvement projects have no stop. They should be continuously implemented by middle managers at the production. The proposals of improvement projects sometimes valid and feasible, but sometimes not. However, CEOs should make comments to the poor improvement projects, guide their staffs to focus on feasible points, and motivate them to implement those projects. If they do not have chance to try, their enthusiasm and inspiration will go down and they will never do any other improvement projects.
The project has provided the trainees with the method. It is the turn of CEOs to give chance for their staffs to implement those improvement projects. They need framework and resources (such as time, workers, investment…) to do it.
After all, most trainers satisfied with the training content and method. More than 80% agreed that the training objectives for each topics were identified and followed, the knowledge they have learnt can be applied to their job efficiently as well as the content was organized and easy to follow. All the training materials were given out to each trainer. Furthermore, training facilities were considered good in terms of lighting, machines, fittings and so on. Trainers were evaluated as qualified and gave proper knowledge about each training topic compared to the trainees' levels. Class participation and interaction were encouraged also.
Following the first two training modules, in the 25-26th of April, the third training course was organized by component 5 for middle management training.
In this component, trainers were introduced to different basic management tools including:
- Work planning
- Effective communication
- Rules in giving orders
- Effective meeting
- Guidance in probation time
- Steps to have proper decision
- Effective teamwork
After that, each trainee evaluated his/her own knowledge and the level to apply basic management tools, and chose one tool that they were weak at to make improvement plan from 4- 8 weeks.
At the end of the training course, some trainers had chances to present their improvement projects. These projects were built between the course 1 and course 2 (1month), and was implemented between the course 2 and course 3 (1 month). Director of each company with trainers joining in the courses was invited to watch the presentations to give more comments.
Within a short time, the trainer chose only one part of procedure/ machine to implement the improvement project. Projects’ results help them draw much experience that they can apply to other procedures/ machines. These improvement projects are expected to be made frequently in companies.