Jessica Marquez, “Business First,” Workforce Management, October 23, 2006, p. 1. Kee Meng Yeo.
Human Resource Management, 10e
Lloyd L. Byars and Leslie W. Rue
Johnson & Johnson: Creating a Global Learning Organization
To provide current, cost-effective training in the fast-paced global business environment, many companies are turning to e-learning. One study shows that about 35 percent of large companies have implemented learning management systems, and another 45 percent are planning them.1 While the trend is to centralize learning to control quality, costs, and management, Johnson & Johnson launched a successful e-learning system using a different approach.
Headquartered on a small campus in New Jersey, Johnson & Johnson is one of the world’s most globalized firms, manufacturing health care and personal care products in 60-plus countries and selling them in virtually every country in the world. Known for its customer-based values, the highly decentralized corporation faces a major challenge managing its more than 230 diverse, independent business units. Central to the Johnson & Johnson culture and a source of competitive advantage is its Credo, a set of values that for 70 years has created the cultural ties that bind the organization. But by design, the Johnson & Johnson family of companies is anything but tied together. Johnson & Johnson, which began to decentralize long before it became fashionable in corporate America, enables each business unit to operate as a separate entity, deciding whom to hire and what products to produce.
The organization gains a competitive advantage by letting the diverse companies create their own identities and pursue their own markets. In this environment, current knowledge management injects life into the organization and translates into future profits. Every year Johnson & Johnson invests millions of dollars in workforce training and development, a practice consistent with...
References: Kee Meng Yeo, “Johnson & Johnson: A New Paradigm for Learning Systems Management,” Chief Learning Officer Magazine, March 2006. http://www.CLOmedia.com/content/anmviewer.as?a=1282&print=yes
Kee Meng Yeo.
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