The Account Manager Development Programme supports account managers who are spread across EMEA, to help drive and develop the performance of their key accounts.
The brief / challenge
Juniper has been involved in the design, delivery and project management of PwC’s 12-month EMEA Account Manager Development Programme since 2013. However, due to the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020 and the travel restrictions as a result, we were given the challenging task of managing the virtual transformation of the second of the three module programme.
Our first task was to review the previous module materials, and make the required content and structural changes, whilst collaborating with all PwC guest presenters and contributors. Due to the limited time we had, effective project management was essential to the success of the module, as it allowed us to keep on track and ensure nothing was missed. Every stage of the process required meticulous detail, constant collaboration with core team members, and a fast-paced working rhythm, including virtual meetings and team calls.
Every module has specific learning objectives. Due to the time reduced delivery time ( half of the usual face to face time allocation), focus on learning objectives was even more critical on this occasion. We did this by:
· reducing the content to the essential elements of the module that participants would gain the most from
· designing interactive virtual sessions including virtual breakouts and role plays
· creating a schedule that optimised timing for virtual delivery. This included limiting each session to two hours, and an exercise or a change in delivery after 45 minutes (the optimum learning time). Breaks in between each session allowed participants to have a rest, and to refocus for the next topic.
· including a variety of virtual tools to keep participants engaged and to encourage participation. (e.g.Mural, Jamboard, Menti, Slido as well as the chat function within Google Hangouts)
The feedback from participants, facilitators, guest speakers and actors (who brought the virtual role plays to life) was some of the most positive feedback we have received. Through delivering the module virtually, we succeeded in meeting the learning objectives, whilst introducing virtual tools to the account managers (which they can now use with both their clients and internally), whilst also ensuring the safety of the participants and adhering to organisational guidelines.
As virtual delivery is likely to form at least part of the future of training, the hard work invested in in 2020 will see returns for years to come.